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What Alcohol is Vegan?

Many drinks are made with alcohol, and you may be wondering what alcohol is vegan. This article will find recipes for distilled spirits, liqueurs, beer, and wines. Also, you’ll learn how to make cocktail recipes using vegan ingredients. Vegan alcohol is available at almost every store that sells beer, wine, or liquor.

People assume that drinking is relatively safe because most governments allow it, which is ingrained in most cultures. This could not be further from the truth. Alcohol is one of the most harmful drugs due to its propensity to cause widespread harm. If there was ever a time to use the word sobering, it would be when discussing alcohol statistics. Here are some popular vegan drinks.

Some Vegan Alcohols

Distilled Spirits

While most distilled spirits are vegan, not all flavoured liquors or wines are. The reason is that wines, beers, and other non-vegan alcohols use animal products in the distillation process. That said, the vast majority of neat liquors are vegan. The following list contains a few examples of non-vegan liquors and wines. For more information, read our guide to avoiding non-vegan liquors and wines.

Liqueurs

Several types of liqueurs are vegan alcohol. One of them is the horchata liqueur, which is light in taste and alcohol. This beverage is typically made with Irish whiskey and tiger nuts. The brand has received a lot of press, but it is not entirely vegan. While a vegan liqueur can be used as a substitute for Baileys, many vegan alternatives are available.

Beer

Not all beer is vegan. It’s important to note that some specialist ingredients in beer production are made from animal products. For example, fining agents used in beer production may be made from animal products. But, as long as you know your limit, you can enjoy a beer on a vegan diet. Here are a few vegan beers you should look out for. The following list is a partial list, and the list may be updated.

Wines

As the number of consumers adopting a plant-based or meat-free lifestyle rises, the demand for vegan booze increases. According to a recent Finder study, there will be twelve million vegans in the UK by 2020. The trend has already crossed into the alcohol market, with more restaurants and bars turning vegan and serving drinks made with plant-based ingredients. Here are some of the vegan-friendly brands to look out for in 2014.

Cocktails

If you’re looking for a drink with alcohol but don’t want to risk animal ingredients, try a cocktail made with a plant-based liqueur. The Hibiscus Cherry Mocktail is an excellent example of a cocktail made with hibiscus tea, frozen cherries, and half a cup of vegan sugar. A lime garnish rounds out the drink. Another vegan cocktail is the Passion Fruit Cocktail, made with passion fruit, sugar, and seeds.

Meiomi’s wines

Meiomi’s wines are an excellent option for people with food allergies. Their organic grapes, free of animal ingredients, and sustainable practices make them an excellent choice. Pairing their wines with various foods, including cheese, crackers, and vegetables, is sure to make a good pairing. While they’re a relatively new wine brand, Meiomi’s wines have gained popularity in recent years. Currently, they produce Chardonnay and Pinot Noir.

Courvoisier Cognac

Many alcoholic beverages are naturally vegan. However, some beverages still contain animal products. The ingredients in some drinks may be apparent. For example, honey in honey beers and Lactose in milk stouts are not vegan. Even Coca-Cola states that its vast majority of beverages are vegan, but this brandy uses fish gelatine to stabilize its beta-carotene colour. Regardless of the ingredients in Courvoisier Cognac, you can still find plenty of delicious ways to enjoy this famous brandy.

What are Alcohol’s Social and Public Health Costs?

So, before we get into the fantastic vegan drinking options, let’s look at some alarming facts. Alcohol kills 88,000 people in the United States every year, approximately thirty times the number of people killed in the 9/11 terrorist attacks. This number includes the almost 20,000 Americans who die each year from alcohol-related liver illness and the more than 10,000 people killed in drunk driving incidents. Colon cancer has also been linked to heavy drinking.

1.3 million Americans seek treatment or go to rehab for alcoholism each year. In 2016, alcohol-related hospitalizations outnumbered cardiac attacks in Canada.

The death toll is shockingly high around the world. The World Health Organization states:

Drinking impairs judgment and lowers inhibitions, making this drug a vital role in many crimes. Alcohol has been connected to roughly half of all domestic violence and sexual assault cases, according to numerous research.

What are Some of Finding Vegan Alcohol?

It’s not always easy to locate vegan alcohol.

While some firms voluntarily identify ingredients, it is not required in the United States or Europe for most alcoholic beverages (25).

Companies rarely list fining agents, anyway. Isinglass and gelatin, for example, are rarely found on labels since they were utilized during processing and then removed (26).

Here are some pointers on how to spot vegan alcohol:

Inquire with the manufacturer. Asking the maker if an alcoholic product is vegan is the most reliable way to find out. Contact information is usually available on company websites.

Look for signs of Veganism. On some labels, vegan symbols or wording denote vegan status.

Look for allergy information. Some alcoholic beverages contain milk, eggs, fish, and shellfish, also common allergies. Companies may voluntarily list significant allergies in the United States, but it is not mandatory.

Look for a statement in carmine. Carmine must be mentioned by manufacturers in the United States. On the label, look for words like “contains carmine” or “contains cochineal extract.”

Find vegan resources on the internet. One method is using websites like Barnivore, which tracks the vegan status of over 47,000 alcoholic beverages.

If you’re still not sure whether an alcoholic beverage is vegan, stay away from ones without a vegan claim on the label.

Why aren’t there Vegan Beers, Wines, and Cocktails?

Because of the products used in the filtration process, such as Isinglass, gelatine, and casein, beer, wine, and cider might be non-vegan. Non-vegan flavourings, like honey, may also be used, and some drinks contain milk and eggs. Castoreum, a musky flavouring obtained from the castor sacs (near the anal glands) of dead beavers, is used in various cocktails. Anyone for a drink?

Instead of Isinglass, some producers may utilize egg whites (albumin) or chitin (produced from crustacean shells) to filter their alcoholic beverages. Lactose, honey, and anything else you can think of are used in certain current craft beers to produce unique flavours. The most famous of these is cock-ale, a brewing beer made with an entire chicken carcass added during the 17th and 18th centuries.

Are Vegans Allowed to Drink Alcohol?

Let’s start with the basics. Vegans are allowed to consume alcohol, and Veganism and alcohol are not mutually exclusive words!

In reality, vegan-friendly alcohol is probably more popular than non-vegan alcohol, so you won’t have to stop drinking if you switch to a plant-based diet. When it comes to alcohol, the problem for vegans is that some drinks may include trace amounts of animal ingredients, while others may have been manufactured using non-vegan methods.

Unfortunately, there is little regulation on how beverage manufacturers label their bottles. While it’s becoming more frequent for manufacturers to clarify whether their drinks are vegan alcoholic beverages, many more still don’t make this information readily available.

However, most wine, beer, and spirit makers are moving toward vegan preferences and advertising whether or not their products are vegan.

Is Alcohol Vegan?

In alcoholic beverages, vegan ingredients are more prevalent than not; nonetheless, is all alcohol vegan? Regrettably, no.

While specific non-vegan components are precise (Baileys uses cream, for example), it’s not so easy to tell whether your favourite wine has been filtered through fish guts (yep, it’s a thing, and no one ever advertises it).

For example, winemakers have long used Isinglass to filter their batches before bottling, a procedure known as ‘fining.’ Isinglass is a fish product (yep, fish guts) used to remove impurities from liquids. Some beers utilize Isinglass in the filtering process, but it’s rarely stated on the bottle – and without you knowing what Isinglass is, you might not realize it’s a non-vegan product in the first place!

However, in your hunt for plant-based alcohol, you should be aware of various non-vegan alcohol constituents. Non-vegan components include the following:

Alcohol can contain cream or milk in dairy goods, and Lactose is present in some beers (for example, Milk Stouts). Many beers have traditionally employed milk proteins, such as casein, in the brewing process or as a fining agent for filtering.

Eggs may sound unusual, but eggs may be present in your booze. Albumin, or egg white protein, is a commonly used fining ingredient in wines.

Isinglass is a traditional fining agent for wine and beer made from the intestines of fish.

Another famous fining agent is gelatin, which is made from animal sources.

Chitin is a less common fining agent that should nevertheless be avoided. Shellfish provide the source of chitin.

Non-vegan sweeteners – classic non-vegan sweeteners include honey, often used in flavored beers.

While most big alcohol makers have already transitioned to vegan fining agents, the majority of fining agents used to filter alcohol have traditionally been non-vegan (Isinglass or casein, for example). Guinness, for example, used to use Isinglass in their beer but stopped using it in 2016.

Is Champagne Vegan?

For all you champagne drinkers out there, the same issue arises as it does with wine and beer.

Champagne is essentially a sparkling wine. The wine is carbonated at one point throughout the production process, giving it that unmistakable fizz and pop when we open a bottle to celebrate.

Champagne, like wine, must be ‘fined’ with a fining agent, and Isinglass or another animal-derived substance would have been used in the past. Champagne is a reasonably traditional drink (in fact, the bottle must technically originate from the Champagne area of France to be named ‘Champagne’); thus, the manufacturer may be still using old procedures.

Again, see if you can find it on the manufacturer’s website. The same can be said for other sparkling wine kinds, such as Prosecco or Cava.

How to Determine Whether Gin is Vegan?

Alcohol is exempt from the labelling regulations for food goods, according to the legislation. Unlike food and most non-alcoholic drinks, you can’t just read the label to find out what’s in them.

Even though alcoholic drinks are suitable for vegans, they may not include the words “suitable for vegans” or the Vegan Society Trademark on the label.

Barnivore.com keeps track of which beers, wines, and spirits are suitable for vegans by contacting the makers via email. If the drink you’re interested in isn’t listed, the only way to be sure is to contact the producer and inquire.

Conclusion

If you’re aware of the risks and drink responsibly, alcohol can be a part of some fantastic experiences. Barnivore makes it simple to check the vegan status of any major brand of wine or beer.

Alcohol executives, like those in the gambling and soft drink sectors, try to maximize profits regardless of social consequences. They are well aware that alcoholics account for a significant share of sales. The hardest-drinking ten percent of the population consumes more than half of all alcohol marketed in the United States. Every week, people in this category consume more than 70 drinks!