Packaged Foods

Some pre-packaged foods that don’t seem to contain animal products, such as meat or dairy, in fact contain ingredients coming from animals. For this reason, it is recommended that if you choose the vegan lifestyle, you make as many recipes from scratch as possible, so you control what ingredients are used.

  • Cake Mix – It has been found that some powdered cake mix boxes contain some beef fat in order to add to the taste and longevity of the product. Most Hostess products including Twinkies, also contain some beef fat.
  • Refried Beans – If you aren’t making your own refried beans with vegan fat choices like oil, then you may be at risk of consuming non-vegan refried beans. Many restaurants will make their refried beans with beef lard, as well as some canned refried beans.
  • Margarine – Vegans often choose margarine over butter since it is not made from dairy products, but that doesn’t make it vegan. In fact most margarine varieties contain whey, gelatin and casein, which is a milk protein.
  • Salted Peanuts – Some brands of packaged salted or roasted peanuts also contain some meat byproducts, including Planter’s Dry Roasted Peanuts which have gelatin.
  • White Sugar – Though this fact isn’t surprising to all vegans, some have not done sufficient research and will be shocked to learn than plain white sugar is not vegan. Most white sugar manufacturers process the sugar using bone char from animals.





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  1. this article freaks me out a little bit! bird feathers?! EEK

    • @Alissa Fleck:

      They also use human hair to produce cystein to make breads fluffy.Mostly hair from the asian country because it is less loaded with chemicals..bleaching, colouring and so on.

  2. As a meat eater, I actually appreciate learning that so much of the animal is able to be put to use. This is not to say that I think it’s right to deceive vegans, though.

  3. Bone char from animals? wow…

    • @Ms. Information:

      It would also be possible to use char made from plants/wood..but the industry has to dump their waste somewhere.

      And since it isn´t possible to use all the skeletons for fertilizing/chemical industry matters, you dump it into the food sector by whatever means you can think of.

  4. truth might nothing we eat that we ddid not grow is safe- this is scary and really a bitter sweet truth

  5. for me, being vegan is about embracing a nonviolent lifestyle and working towards ending exploitation and commodification. this blog makes it seem like veganism is about extreme restriction and perfection. there are vegan alternatives to almost everything listed there and they’re not hard to find.

    i was hoping the article would talk about moving beyond obsessiving over byproducts and talk about things like palm oil and chocolate from child slaves.

  6. This article is actually a bit misleading and also condescending to me as someone who lives a meat free lifestyle. I consider myself a vegetarian with vegan tendencies and like many of which I know, we tend to be knowledgable of certain terms that would consider an item not to be vegan; plus we read labels. Also, it is not true that “many” beers contain geletin & egg whites. Some do, but not “many”, which is probably why only one brand name was given. Again, people who have been vegetarian or vegan for years know which brands/companies to stay away from because the labeling clearly states the ingredients and there are also numerous references to confirm what companies/produce remains free of animal products.

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