Welcome to Vegan Information! UK British Supermarket Vegan Food Labelling Information!
Vegan Food Labelling in UK British Supermarkets...7th March 2017 in one word..is a "MESS". Label with "WHITE V and word VEGAN underneath" or buy Raw.
I thought...not having GOOGLED this matter that it would be fairly easy ! however I struggled to find an easily accessible short clear summary of WHAT THE VEGAN LABEL even looks like or how THEY look like as they do vary it seems !
Well well well ! after noticing the word label VEGAN on some obviously VEGAN products like soups...I thought OK...a BIG V with word VEGAN means VEGAN ! easy ! I buy that ! unless obviously vegetables and fruit in their raw or frozen state !
Now I discovered some months after thinking I HAVE GONE VEGAN mostly...that in fact..the tyres on my car...the roads I drive on...the laptop I type and go online with...ALL HAVE like so many items in every day use ANIMAL PRODUCTS in them often GLUE made from animal bones. Because the rubbish not eaten of killed animals is used
WRONG ! on Christmas Eve in the Co operative Supermarket in Copthorne Shrewsbury...I had to discover to my surprise and the surprise of the shop staff...that some packets of Frozen Parsnips and Swedes were marked only VEGETARIAN and had MILK and possibly EGG products in them ! eeeek ! certainly there was Cow Milk or Whey in frozen vegetables ! Amazing...I had never until then thought that such products even NEEDED a Vegetarian or Vegan label ! must be obviously VEGAN ...but oh no...
The other product that shocked me was to discover Most BREAD products had EGG and ANIMAL MILKS in them ! I would never have thought that ! bread means wheat to me ! corn ! rye ! not EGGS and MILK ! but it turns out that bread IS made with Glazing shiney coating of egg and cows milk in the dough mixture ! amazing ! not even RYE breads are always 100 percent VEGAN !
So...I became SUSPICIOUS of VEGETARIAN LABELS...especially after seeing some QUORN and LINDA McCARTNEY Vegetarian labelled products had EGG and/or COWS MILK ingredients in them ! eeeek ! animal substances !
Ok now found THIS somewhere as the VEGETARIAN STANDARD LABEL. However...I don't always see THIS on products that have the word VEGETARIAN...or words SUITABLE FOR VEGETARIANS on them...and what is the difference ? between VEGETARIAN or SUITABLE FOR VEGETARIANS ?
Seems to me...SUITABLE for is more wishy washy a term... ? less CERTAIN...less CERTIFIED ? who knows ! cant find any explanations lol !
VEGETARIAN means the item can have DAIRY MILK AND/OR EGGS in it. So NOT VEGAN as it has ANIMAL PRODUCTS/EXCRETIONS.
What I HAVE seen in shops on food items were things like a SOLID BIG WHITE V and word VEGAN underneath it...and sometimes NO VEGAN word under such a big white V or sometimes a GREEN or BLACK V...and I dont know what all those symbols on labels mean !
THIS one is CLEAR it means VEGAN on Sainsbury Baked Beans and Spreads! Big White SOLID V with word VEGAN underneath it in a circle.
but then what does the V label mean when the word VEGAN does NOT appear underneath as I have seen on many products that I dont buy as it doesnt say VEGAN ? Vegetarian ? might have milk and/or eggs in it ? seems to to me ! no one is explaining these V labels anywhere...spent a few HOURS looking to date...and nothing about the V LABELS found ! why no explanations ? what is all this labelling ? not that labels mean much as HORSEMEAT is packed and passed as BEEF and we are surely not going to believe that was a ONE OFF mistake it was WIDESPREAD and EVERYONE just turned a blind eye and said...STAMP with LABEL means PASS and put in the BEEF shelves and ask no questions more. How many MORE less CONTROVERSIAL mistruths are being passed over and ignored just like that on a massive scale ? Loads I say...we just dont get a SCANDAL about them unless something kicks off and kills someone who is allergic to HORSEMEAT not BEEF type event.
Anyway. Fed up with this V labelling mess. CONCLUSION IS ?
BUY RAW or BUY VEGAN or spend hours doingn a check list on what visible ingredients of these long complex words if on the products are...and then do nothing else having spent so much time just shopping after that lol. MAKE IT A HOBBY even ? not e ! no clear labels ? no sales to me. ONLY VEGAN WORD and BIG V but WORD VEGAN is needed if not fruit and vegetables in their RAW state and I will NOT buy FROZEN FRUIT AND VEGETABLES LABELLED VEGETARIAN as yes they sometimes like bread contain milk of cows and/or eggs !
Can't load the DEFRA UK Gov page on the issue of Vegan and Vegetarian labelling on food items in the UK...so where else gives information ?
ok this site has information... HELLS BELLS ! OMG !! all those LONG COMPLEX INGREDIENTS WORDS to have to CHECK to be CERTAIN a product is VEGAN ! EEEEK !
Stuff that hey...I WANT 1 WORD MAX to have to Squint or take reading glasses out over...VEGAN ! all this long list of complex words is a pain in the butt ! just ridiculous ! time consuming !
7th March 2017....I look at this page for the 1st time NEVER having seen anything like it on any of the VEGAN Organisations sites easy to find...and I think what ? stuff this. GO RAW I am NOT wasting my time on this MAGNIFYING GLASS reading of non VEGAN labelled food products...if it is not Fresh Fruit and Vegetables now...or not simply with the word VEGAN on it...I WILL NOT BUY. End of MY time waste and reward companies that do save me and everyone time to scrutinies and waste time on every single cusotmer to wants to know IS THIS FOOD VEGAN OR NOT ? I mean the TIME spent in a supermarket asking that when it should be CLEAR and SIMPLE with VEGAN on any food not simply raw fruit and vegetables...is ridiculous ! the price of food will have to go up to deal with this time waste if this carries on !
"Below are a few tips that’ll have you throwing items into your shopping trolley with confidence! Refer to this as often as necessary. And if in any doubt, it is probably best to leave it out.
Does it say vegan on the label?
There’s never been a better time to go vegan! There are more options available than ever before, and the internet means we can check up on almost anything, whenever we need. However, the food labels of the world are still playing catch up, and it’s a rarity to pick up something and find it labelled ‘vegan’. So does that mean your food choices have suddenly plummeted to the sum total of the fruit and veg aisle? No. It just means you have to be a bit clever.
Many labels will obviously state if something is vegetarian, so our first tip is to look for that…
Legally, a company must explicitly state what allergens are contained in a product, and these will typically highlighted in bold within the ingredients list, or stated separately below it. If you see a non-vegan allergen ingredient (eggs, milk, whey and casein are the usual suspects) then that item is vegetarian only. If there are none listed, then it is very likely vegan. But this is where the list below becomes your best friend. Always scan any ingredients list (vegetarian labelled or not) for any of the following.
If you see one of these listed then the product is not *vegan:
• Carmine/cochineal (E120) – red pigment of crushed female cochineal beetle, used as a food colouring
• Casein – from milk (a protein)
• Lactose – from milk (a sugar)
• Whey – from milk. Whey powder is in many products, look out for it in crisps, bread and baked products etc.
• Collagen – from the skin, bones, and connective tissues of animals such as cows, chickens, pigs, and fish – used in cosmetics
• Elastin – found in the neck ligaments and aorta of bovine, similar to collagen
• Keratin – from the skin, bones, and connective tissues of animals such as cows, chickens, pigs, and fish
• Gelatine/gelatin – obtained by boiling skin, tendons, ligaments, and/or bones and is usually from cows or pigs. Used in jelly, chewy sweets, cakes, and in vitamins; as coating/capsules
• Aspic – industry alternative to gelatine; made from clarified meat, fish or vegetable stocks and gelatine
• Lard/tallow – animal fat
• Shellac – obtained from the bodies of the female scale insect Tachardia lacca
• Honey – food for bees, made by bees
• Beeswax (E901) – made from the honeycomb of bees, found in lipsticks, mascaras, candles, crayons etc.
• Propolis – used by bees in the construction of their hives
• Royal Jelly – secretion of the throat gland of the honeybee
• Vitamin D3 – from fish-liver oil; in creams, lotions and other cosmetics
• Lanolin (E913) – from the oil glands of sheep, extracted from their wool – in many skin care products and cosmetics
• Albumen/albumin – from egg (typically)
• Isinglass – a substance obtained from the dried swim bladders of fish, and is used mainly for the clarification of wine and beer
• Cod liver oil – in lubricating creams and lotions, vitamins and supplements
• Pepsin – from the stomachs of pigs, a clotting agent used in vitamins
*We’ve only addressed the ingredients that are likely to be unfamiliar to Veganuary participants. We haven’t listed the ‘obvious’ like chicken or beef, or specific types of fish or shellfish. If you are at all unclear about what vegans eat, please refer to this definition:
A vegan does not eat the flesh of any animal (including fish, sea creatures and birds), eggs, dairy products, honey or any other animal product.
‘May contain’ labelling
In the UK, a manufacturer must declare whether a product is made in a factory where allergens are present. You may be confused when you see a label that appears to be free from any non-vegan ingredient and then states ‘may contain milk’ (for example). This is a legal requirement and does not mean the product is not vegan.Please visit the Food Standards Agency website for further information.
A few things to watch out for…
• ‘Non-dairy’ or ‘lactose-free’ doesn’t necessarily mean vegan – in fact, more often than not, they’re not vegan. Read these labels as you would any other.
• Glycerin(e)/glycerol, lactic acid, mono or diglycerides, and stearic acid can all be from slaughterhouse fat, but could also be vegan. If they are plant-derived then it should say so on the label.
• In the USA, white sugar can be refined using animal bone char. (Also, don’t be fooled by the name ‘brown sugar’, as it is just white sugar mixed with molasses.) Click here for a list of vegan sugar suppliers.
If it doubt about any of the above then it is best to contact the manufacturer directly.*
Contacting the manufacturer
There will be instances where you might still be unsure if something is vegan. Typically this is when an item is labelled as ‘vegetarian’ and contains an ingredient which could or could not be vegan, but there are no further details to confirm this either way. What you do here is entirely over to you, but you may want to make contact with the manufacturer directly* (especially if it is a preferred food and you’re wanting peace of mind). If you do choose to get in touch then here’s a little tip: be specific. If you just ask ‘is it vegan?’ a lot of the time they’ll just play it safe and say no. A good question to ask is, ‘I notice this item isn’t listed as vegan, but there isn’t anything obviously not vegan in its ingredients. Could you please confirm if there is anything that makes it unsuitable, i.e. cross-contamination during manufacture, or ingredients involving animal products?’ You are more likely to receive a detailed reply.
*Contacting these companies directly is also positive in that it highlights the need for better labelling, and promotes demand for vegan products at the same time.
If you are interested in further researching the animal-derived ingredients/products used in manufacturing today, click here.
There’s an app for this! Spoon Guru is a free food search and discovery app available for UK users on iOS and Android. Using the inbuilt barcode scanner, recipe library, and search function, you can quickly and easily find products that are suitable for your diet. You can also read more about the app in our blog post."
I Left a commentn on the page today 7th March 2017
Although many UK supermarkets and restaurants are reasonably good at labelling vegetarian food as vegetarian, the situation still leaves a lot to be desired. I have started a petition to introduce a mandatory labelling scheme for the following reasons:
A product labelled "vegetarian" is (usually) vegetarian, but a product which is not labelled "vegetarian" may or may not be vegetarian, so people often have to resort to reading the ingredients.
Explicitly labelling non-vegetarian food as "non-vegetarian" would ensure that vegetarians don’t accidentally buy or consume products which are not suitable for them because of hidden ingredients (such as calf rennet in parmesan).
Products labelled "vegetarian" are occasionlly labelled incorrectly, due to a misunderstanding of what is and is not veggie. This is especially true of restaurant menus.
For vegans, the situation is much worse. When shopping for vegan products, you have to read the ingredients on almost everything.
When it comes to alcohol, there’s very often no way of knowing if something is vegetarian or not. A beer, for example, may or may not contain isinglass, but there’s no way of knowing without contacting the brewery.
Similary, medicines are often not labelled adequately.
The scheme I am proposing would resolve these issues by providing a clear definition of what is vegan and what is vegetarian, and by ensuring that all food, drink and medicine is labelled as follows:
Vegan products would always be labelled "vegan".
Products which are vegetarian but not vegan would be labelled "vegetarian".
Anything else would be labelled "non-vegetarian".
The petition has been published on epetitions.direct.gov.uk and can be signed by UK residents and British citizens.
Well petition over...ouff hey...hardly any signatures ! eeek ! but there are HALF A MILLION VEGANS in the UK ! and a million more vegetarians AT LEAST ! What is it with this VEGAN and VEGETARIAN LABELLING ? it is unclear !
Petition Introduce mandatory labelling of food, drink, and medicines as non-vegetarian, vegetarian or vegan
We, the undersigned, call on HM Government to introduce a system of mandatory labelling which would require all foodstuffs, alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages, and oral medications to be clearly and explicitly labelled as being either non-vegetarian, vegetarian, or vegan.
Additionally, this labelling scheme would also require that people who avoid certain foods for religious reasons, or who have any other special dietary requirements, can always ascertain from the labelling whether or not a product is suitable for their consumption.
The labelling scheme would also apply to food and drink served in restaurants.
This petition has been archived
It was submitted during the 2010–2015 Conservative – Liberal Democrat coalition government
Deadline 18 August 2012
Right...well what does the VEGAN SOCIETY say about LABELS ? I cant recall seeing this information on their website...I am a member ! where is FOOD LABELLING advice ?
HOLY SHIT ! this is a nightmare ! not a V LABEL explanation in sight !
I see news of a VEGAN label I have rarely seen if ever on foods...this one...
and a load of words and more long lists of scientific complex words to have to get magnifcying glass out and know to look at anything to see if not vegan ! shit ! I cant deal wtih this ! I want LABEL VEGAN simply !
Companies and manufacturers are responding to the demand for vegan products with everything from cream cheese to creme eggs. Vegans have never had it so good! It’s just about knowing what to look for when you’re out and about with your shopping basket, says Sarah Hoyle.
Searching for the sunflower
Do you often find yourself wandering through the supermarket aisle staring blankly at a label, trying to convince yourself that you’re happy with the ingredients list before placing your desired item inconspicuously back on the shelf, hoping that nobody has noticed? You’re not alone. Though there are 18,000 products registered with the Vegan Trademark, I bet for many of you there are other items on your shopping list that still cause some confusion. Until some supermarkets and manufacturers help us out a bit more with adequate (and correct!) labelling, vegans will continue to face this shopping dilemma.
Even the most meticulous reader can make mistakes, especially when the most unassuming products turn out not to be vegan. E numbers in bread, silk in shampoo, pearls in deodorant, Vitamin D3 in cereal, glycerine in shower gel...it can be a bit overwhelming. Did you know that apples can be coated with shellac after they have been cleaned? And, just in case your soya milk isn’t ‘milky’ enough, some manufacturers have even been known to add whey powder to it! But don’t despair. Realising that it was taking me three hours to do my weekly shop, I decided to educate myself on which ingredients are vegan-friendly, and which are not. I’d like to share my findings with you, in the hope that it might help you to finish your shopping before the store closes.
How to avoid buying things that aren’t suitable for vegans
Use allergy advice as a guide
Under EU Food Information to Consumers 2011 regulation, companies must specify exactly which allergens are in a product. Not only do companies operating in the EU have to state which commonly-named allergens (i.e. 'milk') are contained within the product, these allergens have to stand out in some way: you may find them in bold, or underlined. While this will not cover you for ingredients like honey and egg lecithin, it at least identifies the usual suspects. Very similar regulations operate in Australia, Canada and the USA.
A quick internet search can prove fruitful, or you can ask manufacturers directly if you are unsure. Many companies have a statement on their website or can provide a list. There are also apps available for smartphones such as Is It Vegan? Remember that there are certain 'rules' to buying vegan-friendly too. For example, juice containing lots of pulp is less likely to have been filtered with animal ingredients. Moreover, organic citrus fruits such as lemons are likely to be waxed with shellac for a 'natural' finish, meaning non-organic may be safer. However only fruit marked as unwaxed will be safe, so do ask in-store to find out more. And don't forget that unless the Vitamin D in cereal is specified as D2 or Vitashine (the only plant-based D3) it is likely to be from lanolin. This is what unfortunately makes all Kellog's cereals not vegan-friendly.
Ask your friends
Join a vegan group in your area through our Local Contacts. Share what you eat, experiment with new ideas or support local vegan-friendly restaurants together. I’ve made some jaw-dropping discoveries while eating with friends.
Getting your head around all those E numbers
E numbers are code names for food additives, and they can seem confusing to the untrained eye. But it doesn’t take long to get the hang of them. Here are a few to remember:
What is it?
Action to take
Cochineal (another name for carminic acid, a pigment taken from the abdomen)
Food colouring and cosmetics
Lecithin (can be made from soya or, less commonly, from eggs)
Emulsifier used in wide range of foods
Check the label for the Vegan Trademark or contact supplier
Glycerol (is mainly plant-based but there are still instances of it being derived from animal fat)
Sweetener and solvent used in wide range of foods, beverages and cosmetics
Check the label for the Vegan Trademark or contact supplier
Edible Bone Phosphate (a product made from the bones of cattle or pigs)
Cosmetics, toothpaste, nutritional supplement and anti-caking agent
Disodium Inosinate (can be produced from meat, fish or tapioca starch)
Flavour enhancer often found in snack foods
Check the label for the Vegan Trademark or contact supplier
Glazing agent, candles, confectionary, comestics like moisturisers or lip products
Shellac (derived from the lac beetle)
Furniture polish, glazing agents, confectionary
Mono and di-glycerides of fatty acids (sometimes derived from animal fats)
Crisps, bread, dairy-free spread
Check the label for the Vegan Trademark or contact supplier
Shopping at the supermarket
In the UK, supermarkets such as the Co-operative, Sainsbury’s, Waitrose and Tesco usually label their own brand packaging quite well. It is, at the present time, harder to find supermarket branded products labelled ‘vegan’ at either Asda or Morrison’s. Vegan Society Trademarked products are widely available online and at most supermarkets and health food stores, including Holland and Barrett: the latter offer a 10% discount to Vegan Society members too. Beware of products generally targeted at allergy sufferers, such as the 'Free From' sections; these products aren’t automatically vegan. I’ve known people to pick up the ‘free from chicken nuggets’, expecting meat alternatives but instead finding gluten-free versions of the real thing. That said, I’ve been pleased to find vegan-friendly biscuits and chocolate in these sections with little effort.
Look out for the ‘V’ symbol
Living in a non-vegan world, all that we can do is try to be vegan as far as is practical and possible. Some accidental contamination from animal substances is likely in many situations, for example on production lines that are not dedicated to vegan products. Vegetarian products are a good indication that you’re on the right track, as this symbol eliminates many of the ingredients that you would like to avoid as a vegan. Watch out for eggs, dairy, and products derived from insects, such as silk, honey, beeswax, and shellac. Take care to avoid lanolin from sheep’s wool, found in many soaps, cosmetics, and creams."
and THIS IS THE VEGAN ANTHEM ! by Vegan Chrissie Hynde of the Pretenders ! let us not PRETEND to love or even LIKE animals and our fellow humans...if we kill them for unnecessary pleasures that are easily satisfied other less cruel and healthier ways ...I' LL STAND BY YOU !
Other page links to come, vegan athletes, vegan videos of animal agriculture realities, famous people vegans etc
Summary of the Animal Agriculture Issues. Cruelty, Unnecessary Deaths, Unhealthy Diseases to humans, Starvation of poor people, Climate Change and Pollution, Wildlife habit destruction and wildlife, water and food reduction. There is nothing NATURAL about the farm animals we humans kill, nothing NATURAL about how these caged animals are BRED and FED so much unhealthy fodder and chemicals that pass into our bodies also, nothing NATURAL about the mass excretions that pollute our AIR and WATER killing off natural wildlife and their habitats.
The FUTURE is to STOP BREEDING DOMESTIC animals that we kill...these are Frankenstein suffering breeds humans created wrongly...chickens suffer heart and limb pains due to being designed and pumped full of fast growth chemicals to be freak unnatural animals that suffer in pain due to the shape and form humans have selectively bred extremes from...just like our pedigree pets...humans have created freaks of nature with many physical deformities in the human engineered breeds. Cows pigs chickens suffer terribly due to this. WE are creating the MASS unnatural suffering and pollution of our planet starving people to waste resources on animal feed plants instead of feeding ourselves on NON GMO CROPS as is possible if we stopped wasting processing plants through unhealthy suffering animals we do not need to breed and kill for our food or anything we need. The EXTINCTION of natural WILDLIFE in our world is also LINKED to this MASSIVE over production by HUMANS of animal agriculture destruction activity !
Cruelty, Deaths, Suffering, Starvation, Pollution, Climate Change is all affected massively by this mass animal holocaust of totally unnatural levels and totally unnecessary to our needs and health let alone the lives of those bred and killed and people starved in our world that we could feed if we chose to not eat unhealthy dead herbivores who have never threatened us and do not deserve to be bred to die for our selfish unhealthy uses of them.
EU FARMER SUBSIDIES...just like USA FARMER SUBSIDIES take 40 PERCENT of all the tax payers funds ! Doesn't matter if we call it EU or NATIONAL that is HUNDREDS OF BILLIONS of wasted MONEY on CRUELTY and POLLUTION creating NHS, Health Costs created by animal agriculture abuse ! WASTE OF MONEY ! lets not whine about the cost of Triple heart bypass operations hey when ANIMAL flesh and products like eggs have MASSES of CHOLESTEROL that PLANTS have NONE of hey ! eating flesh is eating PROCESSED plants ! cut out the middle man ! the middle MEN the ANIMAL farmers are living off the blood of innocent unnecessary deaths of animals instead of picking carrots healthy alternative farming crop agriculture !
Nestle, Unilever, Mars, Coca Cola, Associated British Foods, Mondelos/Kraft, General Milk, Kelloggs Danone, PepsiCo the big 10 companies of FOOD are the BIGGEST WORLD POLLUTERS ! and BIG ADVERTISING BUDGETS to shove their food products in all our faces constantly ! governments afraid to upset them or contradict them or tell us the TRUTH about the harming the animals our health and the planet effects they are having ! as it was for the tobacco industry for DECADES we were told smoking doesn't cause cancer lol ! aha...Heinz the baked beans manufacturer are now of course owned by usa multinational Kraft and have NO VEGAN LABEL on even their baked beans but OTHER ORGANIC BAKED BEANS sold in uk supermarkets do !
Forget taking a shower instead of a bath trivial hype...don't eat a flesh burger saves many times more WATER for the planet and asthma costs of air pollution due to excrements of mass numbers of animals. The cost of a glass of milk isn't just deaths of baby cows born forcibly every year to be killed for mother cows to produce unnatural for humans unhealthy milk...it is pollution disease and flood defences due to climate changes cause MORE by animal agriculture than all the cars driving on our roads ! bullshit about diesel emissions when MORE THAN HALF the air pollution is caused by ANIMAL EXCREMENTS !
Now. I think like most vegans that IGNORANCE is why anyone doesn't make CHANGES needed to anything in our lives. I like most was IGNORANT of even the way cows milk didn't just flow on tap without producing babies that were taken away AT ONCE and KILLED ! or that male baby chickens are ground up ALIVE as part of the EGG industry ! this is barbaric ! but when you don't realise...that animals bred today are FREAKS that suffer pain in chests and legs as part of the norm of their aweful purpose of existence we human farmers have done to get more money out of these verbally handicapped living creatures...well...ignorance about WE DONT NEED THEM AS FOOD even as it is POISONING us...
Webpage created start date 12th Feb 2017. It doesn't matter what we think most people currently think or do...if we think we can do something good even if we think it small and insignificant...it makes a difference. As the fairy queen said to Frodo in the Lord of the Rings...even the smallest person in the world can make a difference. ONE makes a difference. of about 11 thousand killed animals in 1 human lifetime, just for FOOD ! Totally unnecessarily. Just to put a FIGURE to what 1 PERSON can achieve ! SUCCESS !