While it’s amazing to find there are no animal products in some “off the shelf” supermarket product (see Secretly vegan), there are others that you’d think were free from animal products, but are not.
The key offending products that pop up in many grocery items are;
- geletin (or geletine) – a protein made from bones, cartilage, tendons and skin of animals.
- carmine – made from crushed female cochineal bugs, is used as red food coloring
- isinglass – fish guts, used as a clarifying agent in some beers
- shrimp paste
Sample list of products to be wary of if you’re feeding a vegetarian or vegan;
- confectionery – often contains geletine,
- some roasted nuts contain gelatine to help the salt to stick
- products containing lecithin (E322) which is sometimes made using animal fat or egg yolks
- red food coloring E120, known as; carmine, carmine cochineal, cochineal extract, carminic acid or natural red 4
- curry paste – many brands of curry paste can contain shrimp paste
- herbs in tubes – can often contain whey (milk product)
- potato chips – often contain milk products, even if the flavor isn’t “sour cream” or “cheese” milk can still often find it’s way into these products
- biscuits and crackers – often contain milk products, different flavors across the same range may or may not contain dairy, you need to check every one! eg. Arnotts Entertainers or Fantastic Delites
- wine and beer – can contain milk, egg and even fish guts
- traditional worchestershire sauce – contains anchovies (some brands are vegan)
- vitamins can contain animal products
Remember, if you’re feeding a vegan or vegetarian, check and double check the label, oh, and get used to reading really really small print.