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You probably thought THAT was vegetarian too
You probably thought THAT was vegetarian too

Those who are vegetarian or vegan are used to carefully studying the ingredients of food. However, unfortunately not everything is here! Because in the course of the manufacturing process of products that actually appear meat-free, sometimes something comes up that you wanted to avoid.

You probably thought THAT was vegetarian too!
You probably thought THAT was vegetarian too!

Crisps? Cheese? Wine? Isn't everything purely vegetarian? With the quiz below you can find out which foods can actually end up on your plate and which, as a vegetarian or vegan, surprisingly, you prefer to avoid!

Jam, wine, bread? No - these foods are not necessarily vegetarian

From unnecessary to unsavory: These foods hide ingredients of animal origin

Carmine dye: With crushed scale insects for colorful confectionery

Scale insects in candy? What at first sounds like a food scandal is in reality a common procedure for coloring fruit gums, jams, candies and the like.

The so-called real carmine is hidden in the list of ingredients behind the label E120. In contrast to the synthetically produced carmine (E124), it consists of female scale insects. These are bred specifically to produce the dye, mostly in Latin America. In order to obtain the coveted red pigments, the lice are first boiled and then dried and ground.

For a vegetarian and vegan diet, foods containing carmine are therefore completely unsuitable. But regardless of such a diet, it is worth taking a closer look, because allergic reactions are not infrequently triggered by the red pigment. There are also animal-free and natural alternatives: beetroot and the alkanna root are equally suitable for obtaining a purple food coloring.

Gelatine and fish bladders: this is how wine and juice become sham packaging

Quite a few are surprised at the declaration of certain juices and wines as "vegan" in the supermarket. After all, both wines and juices consist mainly of fruits and water - it goes without saying that they are vegan! Or?

Unfortunately, it's not that simple. Because even if no animal ingredients are added to the finished products, this does not mean that they are not used during production either. On the contrary: fish bladders and gelatine are often used to clarify the liquids. However, this is hardly comprehensible for the end user, since there is no corresponding labeling requirement.

So if you value juices and wines that are filtered animal-free, you should pay attention to the V-label when buying or get information directly from the producer. The latter are not dependent on the vegan filter methods, because there have long been numerous alternatives: Natural mineral earth, activated charcoal and vegetable gelatine achieve the same result.

Of pigs and baked goods: How the bristles get into bread

The amino acid L-cysteine is contained in many baked goods. The flour treatment agent supports the consistency of the dough and makes it easier to knead and process. So far, so inconspicuous. If it weren't for the fact that L-cysteine is obtained from pig bristles and bird feathers.

Hidden behind the E920 label, this is only declared for packaged baked goods. At most because there is no binding declaration requirement here either. Similar to gelatine in wine and juice, the bristles are only used as so-called technical aids in production and are therefore also affected by the labeling gap. As always, to be absolutely sure: ask! Many bakeries now offer a growing range of vegan breads and pastries.

It is not only worth taking a look at the list of ingredients for industrially produced foods from the perspective of vegan or vegetarian consumers. Many hidden animal ingredients serve a very specific purpose, but can be exchanged for synthetic or plant-based alternatives without much effort - these are not only more culinary, but also reduce animal suffering.

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