Do you want to be sure that you don’t get fish or meat? Then it is wise to check the ingredient list of a product more often. Indeed, there are a lot of foods and drinks that at first sight seem vegetarian, but that are not.
I list ten products with surprising ingredients for you.
1. Red candies
In fact, all the candy and ice cream (and sometimes also yogurt) that has been given a red or pinkish color is not vegetarian. Their chemical red color comes from the color “carmine”, which in turn is made from the scale. This red louse is crushed and then put into all kinds of foods that have a red or pink hue.
You would think that beer only consists of water, grain, hops and yeast and is therefore as vegetarian as it can be. So no. Fish glue is also added to some types of beer, a substance derived from the dried swim bladder of a fish. This component ensures that the beer becomes nicely clear. Because producers are not required to report this, you can unfortunately not always find this on the ingredient list. It is known that the Guinness brand often uses fish glue.
Yes, there is also fish glue in wine.
4. Parmigiano reggiano
A cheese in its time is of course delicious, and seems the perfect choice if you do not want to eat meat or fish. But did you know that not all cheeses are vegetarian? Rennet is used to give cheese a fixed structure. And that is made from an enzyme that is extracted from the stomach of newborn calves, goats or lambs. Animal rennet is mainly found in cheeses such as parmigiano reggiano or pecorino romano.
5. Refined white sugar
You wouldn’t expect it, but even sugar is not completely free of animal products. The remains of animal boats are often used in refined white sugar. This type of sugar comes from sugar cane and comes into contact with tiny coal bones from cow bones during the processing process. The remaining sugar juice that is heated and then crystallizes is then filtered and bleached with the help of bone coal. Because of this, sugar arrives in that snow-white crystal color. If you want sugar that is truly vegetarian, then look a little further. Because nowadays it is increasingly for sale.
6. Worcestershire sauce
Worcestershire sauce is often used as a seasoning in a variety of dishes. And the following also applies to this sauce: it is anything but vegetarian. Traditional Worcestershire sauce contains anchovies, although more and more vegetarian varieties are available.
7. Corn snacks
Snacks like this often contain gelatin, which is made from, among other things, the bone and skin of cows and pigs. Corn snacks are therefore generally not vegetarian.
8. Vanilla ice cream
The vanilla aroma that gives vanilla ice cream its recognizable taste is usually not derived from vanilla pods. Producers often use beaver horn instead, which has a similar aroma and is much cheaper. It is also known as “castoreum”. Beavers secrete it and use it to grease their skin. It is produced by a gland that is located between the anus and sexual organs of the animals.
Yes, even with chips you have to believe it … If you see whey powder on the ingredient list of a bag of chips, chances are that the content is not strictly vegetarian. Whey is a by-product of cheese making and has therefore been in contact with animal rennet.
Animal rennet is also often used to make pesto. Do you want to keep it completely vegetarian? At many organic supermarkets you can buy pesto that does not contain any animal constituents.