Those who adhere to a Vegan diet vow to not eat any animal products. Products that obviously come from animals such as meat and dairy are easily identifiable in our meals, but some animal products may be more difficult to see or taste. The origins of the following ingredients surprise many for not being vegan-friendly:
Vegans generally believe that bees are animals, and therefore deem consuming honey to be unethical. This endangered insect species plays a vital in our ecosystem comparisons made between harvesting honey to factory farming deter many vegans. Saying this, some parts of the vegan community separate insects from animals and therefore have no objection to honey.
Jelly, Marshmallows, Gummy Lollies, Skittles, Some Jams, Cough Lollies…
What do all of these foods have in common? Gelatin, which a thickening agent that gives food a soft, squishy consistency. It is made from a mixture of peptides and proteins produced by partial hydrolysis of collagen extracted from the skin, bones, and connective tissues of animals such as domesticated cattle, chicken, pigs, and fish.
Beer and Wine
Isinglass, a gelatin-based substance derived from fish, is used as a clarifying/fining agent in some beer and wine. This process is used to remove protein, yeast, cloudiness, “off” flavours and colorings, and other organic particles. Other non-vegan ingredients sometimes used for this purpose are casein (from milk) and egg whites. Thankfully, there are several common fining agents that are animal-friendly and used to make vegan wine, so check your wine label before making your purchase decision in-store.
Some Supermarket Breads
Traditionally, bread is made from yeast, flour, water, and salt, therefore would be suitable for vegans. Unfortunately, some commercially sold breads (e.g. sold at supermarkets) contain dairy such as whey (a milk protein) or eggs to act as fillers or stabilisers, making such varieties unfriendly to vegans. Be wary of other baked goods such as brioche, croissants, due to the use of butter, eggs, and dairy.
Although vegan-friendly brands are available, traditional recipes for this condiment include anchovies.
Soups and Sauces
Many soups and sauces that may be seemingly vegetarian, are often made with chicken stock, beef stock, or fish stock. Check the label or ask the chef for clarification if you’re unsure.