What makes wine non-vegan?
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vegan wine

Well it seems that being vegan is much more than just not eating animals. By-products of animals are found in numerous products and medications and wine is one of those. So, if you are vegan and drink wine, you need to know which wines are vegan wines and which have been processed with animal products. 

So why are some wines not vegan and are there vegetarian wines?

Wine naturally has insoluble particles that require a process known as clarification. Fining agents are used to bind the suspended particles to create larger particles that can then be filtered out. The fining agents are generally animal based and include organic substances such as: Gelatin made from animal bones; Cassein from milk; Isinglass from fish bladders; Albumin from egg white. So, to clarify, Ovo-lacto vegetarians should be contented to drink wines that have the Albumin from egg white but Lacto vegetarians that do not eat eggs would not and the vegans simply do not want any part of animal in there wine.

So how do you know if you’re drinking a vegetarian wine? After all, producers are not obliged to declare which fining agents they use.

In South Africa,  as in most countries, manufacturers of wine are not required to label what finings are used to clarify the wine. It seems that although there are numerous wineries in South Africa that offer vegan wines, unless the bottle is specifically marked Vegan on the label you would need to identify specific brands to be sure.  one of the over 100   but can you be sure that they are unless the bottle is marked ‘Vegan’. Those wines that are vegan generally use bentonite clay or activated carbon as the finings.

So, of you are vegan, and love your wine, do not panic as there are over 100 wineries in South Africa  that are listed on VeganSA that claim to offer vegan wines.

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