22 Mar Is Beer Vegan?
Is Beer Vegan?
For the longest time I assumed beer is one of those beverages that cannot be classified as non-vegan. After all, it’s made up of hops, grains, water and yeast right? You will never hear of beer with a steak thrown in it or a juicy drumstick added into it. So general assumption for many has all beer is acceptable to vegans. The truth however could not be further from that.
To better understand why vegan beer exists, we need to define who a vegan is and how beer is made. Vegans do not consume any animal products or derivatives of animal products. Different kinds of beer are manufactured differently. Some beers are strained using animal products such as fish bladder (isinglass) or gelatin. There are also beers that contain honey, which is a byproduct of bees.
How Can You Tell Beer Is Vegan?
The most obvious way to tell if a beer is vegan is by checking out the ingredients indicated on the labelling. Some traditional brewers use the old methods of brewing and in most cases do incorporate some animal products and/or byproducts in their brewing. Some of them do not indicate these animal products and byproducts on their labelling.
However business survey brewers understand that today’s market is more specialized and they therefore put effort to provide as much information on the labelling as they possibly can. The ingredients indicated are more detailed and some actually state is the beer is vegan friendly or not so that if you don’t understand what some of the ingredients used are, you will at least be able to know with certainty if the beer is good for you as a vegan.
Knowing how the particular beer is filtered can also be helpful. Traditional filtering methods made use of isinglass and gelatin both of which are animal byproducts and therefore not vegan friendly. However, to meet the demand of the growing vegan market, newer brewers have started using modern filtration methods that do not incorporate use of animal products or their derivatives.
The issue of filtration is also controversial because some argue that even though beer is filtered using animal byproducts, the fact that those finings fall out of beer and are not part of the final product means it’s vegan friendly. Strict vegans will however argue that the fact that they were used in the first place makes such beer unacceptable.
You can also use the site barnivore.com to check out which beers in the market are vegan friendly. With many varying opinions within the vegan community, the information given might not be acceptable to everyone but it is a good starting point.
Vegan Beers In The Market Today
To get you started, we have put down a list of brewing companies that make beers that are 100% vegan friendly.
- Allagash brewing company
- Coors and Coors Light
- Anchor Brewing Company
- Budweiser and Bud Light
- New Belgium
- Lagunitas Brewing Company
- Samuel Adams Boston Lager
- 21st Amendment
- Sierra Nevada Brewing Company