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Checking ingredient lists carefully is part of everyday vegan shopping. Many products are vegan, but not marked with an official vegan logo. In addition, sometimes animal ingredients are hidden there, which are not easily recognizable at first glance. They often have a chemical name that lay people do not recognize. This makes it all the more important to check the ingredients carefully in order to discover hidden, animal-based ingredients immediately. In this article you will find a listing of additives that are of animal origin and often overlooked. We also clarify the biggest misconceptions when it comes to vegan ingredient lists.

What are E numbers?

E-numbers are additives in food products that have a European approval own So the “E” stands for Europe. There are over 300 different E numberswhich stand for emulsifiers, colorants, thickeners, flavor enhancers and preservatives, among other things. Some of them are vegan, others are not. Some E numbers can be be of animal origin, must but not.

Which E-numbers are hiding animal ingredients?

Animal ingredients may be hidden behind these E-numbers.

Added vitamins with animal components

In many products, vitamins are often added that appear vegan at first glance. However, sometimes they can contain animal ingredients. Therefore always pay attention to the vegan certification if you see products with these vitamins in the ingredients list:

Frau mit Maske und blauen Gummihandschuhen greif in einem Kühleregal nach einem Fertiggericht und liest sich die Inhaltsstoffe durch

Is lactic acid vegan?

Many are putting food products with lactic acid and pectin (E340) listed in the ingredients list back on the shelf. But in fact, pectin is now mostly produced from apples or citrus fruits. Lactic acid is a natural preservative. It is produced from the fermentation of plant foods such as sour chews and is therefore vegan.

More hidden animal ingredients

Our tip: The app Codecheck for a quick check of the ingredients

Our tip: Use the app as a verification tool

If you’re in a hurry and don’t have the time or inclination to study long lists of ingredients, you can use, for example, the
app Codecheck
can help you. By scanning the barcode, it will quickly and reliably provide you with all the
important facts about the ingredients of the product. At a glance, you can see if there are any hidden animal ingredients in the product.

It pays to ask

In general, of course, if you’re not sure whether an ingredient is vegan or not, check with the manufacturer. There you will usually get an answer quite quickly and can thus be on the safe side. And don’t worry: the manufacturing companies have to pass on such statements to the consumers in a safe and precise manner, since possible allergic reactions with certain substances are to be avoided at all costs.

If you are now unsure and worried about actually recognizing all this, don’t worry: these additives are often found in convenience foods and sweets. With a balanced and varied vegan diet , these products are probably less on your menu anyway.

But if you then sometimes fall back on ready-made products and packaged and do not feel like going through the list of ingredients, rely on the vegan certification by, for example, the Veganblume or the V-Label. Meanwhile, there are so many delicious alternatives. Effort and sacrifice are not necessary and you can enjoy your plant-based food without a guilty conscience.

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