Is Cider Vegan?


Vegan diets are becoming increasingly popular day by day. Whether it’s burgers, chicken wings, mayo, or even eggs, there’s probably a vegan-friendly alternative available. 

Owing to shifting preferences, we are seeing an emergence of vegan-friendly alcoholic beverages, too. While many clear liquors have always been vegan, plenty of beers and wines aren’t. But that’s changing... After all, why can’t one help save the environment & animals and enjoy a nice drink, too?

And that brings us to vegan-friendly cider. One might think that asking if cider is vegan is a silly question (after all it’s just apples right?!) but when it comes to alcohol and veganism, it’s somewhat of a minefield! It can be difficult to navigate what is and isn’t vegan.  There certainly is a mass of misinformation and lack of knowledge when it comes to knowing what goes into our drinks, making vegans often surprised to learn that their favourite tipple contains hidden animal products. So, is cider vegan?

You might be surprised to learn that the vast majority of cider are in fact not vegan friendly!

How can cider not be vegan?


image: thegrowlermag

Vegan or not - you might be surprised just what your favourite drink has hiding in it!

Many popular commercial brands such as Kopparberg, Strongbow and Rekorderlig incorporate animal derivatives (such as gelatine) in their manufacturing process, either as an ingredient in the drink itself or used in the filtering process thus rendering the final product unsuitable for vegans.

Some ciders actually contain pork, egg, dairy and fish!. Animal finings such as casein, albumen, gelatin, Carmine  and isinglass are used to help remove impurities, for clarity and even for taste. Sorry guys it’s time to put down the Kopparberg…

 *Fining is the process by which alcohol is filtered or “refined” during brewing.

So if you’ve ever wondered “is cider vegan”, the straight answer is no, it most definitely isn’t.

So what are these animal products?

You might be wondering about these animal products that make cider non-vegan. Well, there are quite a few products that make it so.

Isinglass: A lot of alcohol (including ciders) is strained through isinglass, which is a form of collagen prepared from  dried fish swim bladders (nice).

Gelatin: We’re all familiar with term - it’s often used in sweets but you might have missed the memo that gelatin is actually an animal pro protein derived from the skin and connective tissue of pigs and cows.

Carmine: Carmine is derived from the bodies of dried cochineal beetles, and is used to color drinks. Carmine is also called Cochineal, Cochineal Extract, Crimson Lake, Natural Red 4, C.I. 75470, E120, and Carminic Acid so be careful - it’s not always easy to spot this one!

Casein: Casein is a protein derived from milk.

Albumen: Egg white, or the protein contained in it.

Stabilizers/clarifiers: Filtering ciders can be a challenging task as there are so many options out there. While many are natural and produce vegan-friendly ciders, plenty of them don’t. Aside from some of the animal products mentioned above, filtration can also use a substance called chitin that’s derived from crab shells.
Sounds pretty disgusting, doesn’t it?

What vegan ciders to choose? 

That brings us to the next question for the day—what vegan cider options do we have? I mean, surely there must be some saving grace, right? Unfortunately, it isn’t always easy to spot the use of animal products.

But fret not, we’re in luck!

Whilst many commercial ciders use processes that mean they aren’t vegan, many craft ciders tick the vegan box! And we mean that quite literally, as many vegan ciders have proudly display that on the can, box, or bottle.

Whilst many commercial ciders use processes that mean they aren’t vegan, however many craft ciders tick the vegan box! By using more traditional methods, avoiding preservatives and other unnecessary nasties however that’s not to say all craft ciders are vegan - making the world of vegan cider a confusing one! But worry not… we’ve compiled a list of three vegan ciders that you shouldn't miss out on, so you can sit easy that you’re sticking well and truly to the vegan lifestyle.


You could also look for unfiltered ciders as this directly eliminates the odds of picking up a cider that uses animal products for filtration. Unfiltered ciders are on the rise in general, so this gives vegan cider enthusiasts even more reason to celebrate!

Additionally, searching for vegan-friendly cider options on Barnivore and PETA might help. While this list is not complete, it does provide some useful information about vegan ciders.

Our top three vegan cider options:

All cider is not vegan cider, but there are plenty of high-quality options available in the market that are vegan-friendly ciders and many of them are delicious, if I may add. In fact, craft ciders can taste much better than commercial ciders, so vegan ciders possibly taste even better!

Discover some of the best vegan craft cider options on the market at the moment. 

1) Crafty Nectar no.7 

Now we might be bias when it comes to this particular cider (it’s our brand after all) but rest assured this cider has the public's backing! Crafty Nectar No7 is the world's first crowdsourced cider. Born from the flavour profiles of 1000's of cider drinkers, Crafty Nectar No.7 is the perfect blend of complexity, character & body. Made from 100% fresh pressed apples. Dabinett, Michelin, Harry Masters and Yarlington Mill. This cider is medium, mellow and sparkling. And most importantly its a vegan cider!

 2) Crafty Nectar No. 8 Rhubarb Cider 

This cider uses special rhubarb juice in just the right amount. The result? A beautiful blend of sweet and sour. And being our in-house cider, we ensure that you receive only the finest quality rhubarb ciders. And like all good ciders, this one's perfect for vegans & vegetarians, is gluten-free, and contains zero cheap additives or flavourings unlike a lot of other fruit cider brands. And if you need more reasons to try rhubarb cider, check out our in-depth guide where we walk you through the origin of this delicious nectar!

3) Vegan Friendly Cider Box

100% Real Apples. No Additives. Gluten-Free. Vegan-friendly. 

Our handpicked vegan-friendly cider box is all those things wrapped in one delicious package. This box gives you an assortment of six spectacular ciders. All ciders in this box are 100% fresh-pressed and use the highest quality ingredients, no artificial colors, flavorings, or any of that other nasty stuff. 

Choose Craft over Commercial for Vegan Ciders

Finding the right cider can be hard, even more so if you’re looking for a vegan cider. Thankfully, with quality craft ciders ticking the vegan mark, the vegan cider options we have are plenty, especially among craft ciders. 

The three we’ve chosen are some of the finest ciders you can buy, vegan or not. Our home brand ciders are made using the best quality ingredients and only natural methods. This automatically makes them vegan ciders. 

Our vegan-friendly cider box comprises the choicest ciders in the market right now. Our selection criteria include a host of checks to ensure that we pick the best of the best. This way, you get the best cider experience. 

The beauty of craft ciders is that most of them are vegan-friendly without compromising on taste, quality, or experience. So it doesn’t matter whether you opt for fruit ciders, traditional ciders, keeved ciders, or others. Not only do they taste the best, but most are also vegan-friendly.

Have a favourite vegan cider of your own? We’d love to hear more about it!


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