Would you have ever said that the wine obtained from traditional processing is not a 100% cruelty free product? Difficult to notice, but there are some derivatives of animal origin that are commonly used in the production of wine and that make it a drink not suitable for consumption by vegans. This is the case, for example, of adjuvants for clarification, that is, substances through which food liquids can pass, such as wine, to make them clear and pure: among these are the egg albumin, casein and caseinates, bone glue, isinglass, gelatine.
Production of vegan wine: vegetable proteins replace animal ones
Substances, these, to which a vegan consumer is forced to give up. How to remedy their absence? Simple: just as you usually do in the kitchen, ie folding on alternatives of plant origin, such as minerals such as clay, kaolin, bentonite, or vegetable charcoal and some wheat and pea derivatives. And the results are excellent: a recent survey conducted in teams by the University of Milan and Naples has established that the adjuvants for the clarification of wine of plant origin provide the same performance as those of animal origin.
But the “risks” for those who follow a vegan diet do not end there, as even some dyes are of animal origin. This is the case of the E120, used to reinvigorate the color of some red wines.
Certifications for vegan wine
If the presence of dyes is indicated on the labels, the same is not true for clarifying agents, nor for the productions that require the use of animals in the fields during processing, another element not compatible with the vegan philosophy. This is why more than one organization has worked to introduce certifications that guarantee the exclusion of all forms of animal exploitation, from the use of animal adjuvants in the processing of wine, to the materials and glues used for packaging, up to to manufacturing auxiliaries, i.e. additives added to the paper mixture to improve its performance. Among the newborn brands, two examples are the Bio Vegan certification of the Bologna Acea (Institute for Ethical and Environmental Certification) and the Vegan® Vegetarian Quality certification, promoted by the Avi, the Italian Vegetarian Association, and by the Csqa Certifications. On the other hand, for wine-producing companies that for economic or bureaucratic reasons do not want to be certified but still want to respect the cruelty free rules, there is an alternative: to indicate the words “European Regulation 1169/11, art. 36 (b) “on the label.