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Gifted Gourmet

Beer May Not Be So Vegetarian Friendly...

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Article in Beer Advocate:

I found this to be a real eye-opener:

Beer for vegetarians and vegans? What? But beer only has water, malt, hops and yeast in it?" Wrong. Beer (and cider & wine) has everything from ....

And that's just a handful of the potential ingredients that can be found in beer. Currently there are no US laws that protect the consumer, and breweries are not required to include the ingredients on labels, let alone divulge them in any other manner.

Has anyone thought about the potential ramifications for this?

Do your vegetarian friends discuss this issue?


Melissa Goodman aka "Gifted Gourmet"

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article in Beer Advocate

I found this to be a real eye-opener:

Beer for vegetarians and vegans? What? But beer only has water, malt, hops and yeast in it?" Wrong. Beer (and cider & wine) has everything from ....

And that's just a handful of the potential ingredients that can be found in beer. Currently there are no US laws that protect the consumer, and breweries are not required to include the ingredients on labels, let alone divulge them in any other manner.

Has anyone thought about the potential ramifications for this?

Do your vegetarian friends discuss this issue?

Most craft beers, and in fact, a large number of major brewery products, do not have any of this in them. Isinglass, for example, is a traditional clarifying agent. In fact, as with isinglass, several of these agents are not really components IN the beer but are used to take things OUT of the beer. Sure, there's contact and I suppose if you were really hard core about it that you should call the brewery that you are dealing with and ask them if they use any of this stuff. Generally though, especially with craft brewed beer, you won't have many issues (though small breweries are pretty likely to use isinglass, as it is a very traditional way of doing things).

Charcoal derived from bone? Huh?

Caseine? That's glue, you use it to put the labels on, though many people use other types of products

Sure, all of these may occasionally appear in small amounts. I would suggest that they drink water anyway-just in case. More beer for the rest of us.


Brooks Hamaker, aka "Mayhaw Man"

There's a train everyday, leaving either way...

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Well, if vegans are worried about miniscule bits of animal byproducts in beer, the solution to that is easy: brew your own. It's easy, safe, the results are quite satisfying and the ingredients are entirely under one's control. But other ingestants are more troublesome: what would a careful analysis of, say, metropolitan drinking water reveal? Or what about airborne particles? I know for a fact that I have unwittingly ingested several pounds of cat hair and dander in the last year or two -- I shudder to think what other far more gross-sounding animal proteins have sifted onto my food in public eating places. Where does one draw the line? Even the Jain, who gently sweep the path before them as they walk to avoid brining harm to insects, must eat and drink -- although they do eschew some root vegetables because the measures required to harvest them seem unnecessarily injurious to the plant. Now that's what I call integrity. Worrying whether your Heineken was filtered through charcoal that may have once been a horse's femur is to close one's eyes to the far greater problem of vegetable torture.


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ID

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I'm in agreement with Brooks. The only thing on that list possibly used in the production of beer (and likely only in small breweries) is isinglass. It would be easy for a concerned consumer to call a brewery and ask if they use finings.

Casein is a widely-used glue for the application of the label to the bottle. Not used in the beer itself. Shouldn't be a problem unless you're in the habit of licking the label off.

All the other stuff listed is not used by anyone in the brewing industry.

---Guy

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Worrying whether your Heineken was filtered through charcoal that may have once been a horse's femur is to close one's eyes to the far greater problem of vegetable torture.

Well, this sentance started my day with a laugh! :laugh:


I'm a canning clean freak because there's no sorry large enough to cover the, "Oops! I gave you botulism" regrets.

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I'm in agreement with Brooks.  The only thing on that list possibly used in the production of beer (and likely only in small breweries) is isinglass.  It would be easy for a concerned consumer to call a brewery and ask if they use finings.

Casein is a widely-used glue for the application of the label to the bottle.  Not used in the beer itself.  Shouldn't be a problem unless you're in the habit of licking the label off.

All the other stuff listed is not used by anyone in the brewing industry.

---Guy

Spoken like a true, Weheinstaphen trained, big boy brewery brewmaster.

And he is.

Hiya Guy! Come see us. It's a mess! Now, for the first time ever, you don't even notice all of the broken windows at Dixie-

I can find the bright side in anything. Always.


Brooks Hamaker, aka "Mayhaw Man"

There's a train everyday, leaving either way...

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Generally, almost exclusively, commercial beer is filtered by centrifugal force or, in many smaller breweries, through a plate and frame system using cellulose filter pads. Carbon filtration would be something that is much more akin to the spirits industry.

Most left coast breweries I've been to use diatomaceous filters; but, yeah, sheesh, carbon filtration? There'd certainly be nothing left in your beer.

I think most breweries use some sort of filter for the water they use in the beer. I wouldn't be surprised if carbon filters were involved at this point in the process.


---

Erik Ellestad

If the ocean was whiskey and I was a duck...

Bernal Heights, SF, CA

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Most left coast breweries I've been to use diatomaceous filters[...]

Is anyone lobbying to save the lives of those little diatoms?


Michael aka "Pan

 

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Is anyone lobbying to save the lives of those little diatoms?

Don't worry, they died millions of years ago...

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Most left coast breweries I've been to use diatomaceous filters[...]

Is anyone lobbying to save the lives of those little diatoms?

You're overlooking all those poor yeast beasties.

April


One cantaloupe is ripe and lush/Another's green, another's mush/I'd buy a lot more cantaloupe/ If I possessed a fluoroscope. Ogden Nash

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SAVE THE ALES!!!!

I had that bumper sticker on a car I traded in, and have been looking for another one ever since. :biggrin:


Life is short; eat the cheese course first.

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And that's just a handful of the potential ingredients that can be found in beer. Currently there are no US laws that protect the consumer, and breweries are not required to include the ingredients on labels, let alone divulge them in any other manner.

Does this surprise anyone else or am I just naïve?

PS: I would think that, for a vegetarian/vegan, it would matter just as much whether animal substances were used for making the product as if animal matter actually made its way into the final product...

PPS: Interestingly enough from an evolutionnary standpoint yeast and fungi are much more closely related to us than plants


Martin Mallet

<i>Poor but not starving student</i>

www.malletoyster.com

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Thank you, GG! You are the Link Queen. :smile: I ordered it.


Life is short; eat the cheese course first.

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Generally, almost exclusively, commercial beer is filtered by centrifugal force or, in many smaller breweries, through a plate and frame system using cellulose filter pads.

And, it's a damned shame. Some of us like the yeast left in our beer.


I always attempt to have the ratio of my intelligence to weight ratio be greater than one. But, I am from the midwest. I am sure you can now understand my life's conundrum.

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