Which lagers are suitable for vegetarians?

Sometimes being a vegetarian is a bit of a minefield. Supposedly ‘vegetarian’ friendly produce turns out to have either animal produce in it, or animals have been used during the making process.

The reason many lagers a not vegetarian is because a fish bladders are used in the filtering process – where the lager is passed through the bladders, called isinglass, to clear traces of yeast. However, not all lagers are made this way.

I’ve done a bit of research to find out which lagers are vegetarian friendly. Please feel free to get in touch should you have any further lagers I could add to the list.

Vegetarian friendly lagers (suitable for vegetarians)
The following lagers have been approved by the vegetarian society

Budweiser (keg, can and bottle)
Coors Extra Gold (keg, can  and bottle)
Grolsch (keg, can and bottle)
Harp (keg, can and bottle)
Harp Extra (keg)
Heineken & Heineken Export (keg, can and bottle)
Holsten Pils (can and bottle)
Knight’s (can and bottle)
Labatt’s (keg)
Skol (keg, can and bottle)
Tuborg Goki & Tuborg pilsner

The following lagers are also suitable for vegetarians

Stella Artois
Carlsberg
Cobra
Corona

Grolsch has won vegetarian lager of the year on numerous occasions. While Stella Artois used to be made using isinglass, this process has now been stopped and it has been vegetarian since 2009.

Helpfully, on the Ocado website, you can select ‘vegetarian’ when filtering products and this will bring up lagers and ciders that are classed as vegetarian. Interestingly, there are a lot of the big brands missing from this list: http://www.ocado.com/webshop/getCategories.do?tags=|20000|20977|19996|43227&Asidebar=1

I have recently been made aware of the excellent website Barnivore  which lists out a huge range of vegan beers, wines and spirits. It is a really comprehensive site with loads of great information. It is more tailored towards veganism but does have some useful vegetarianism guidelines as well. It does have all the information needed after a bit of sifting, but it is sometimes unclear if products are suitable for vegetarians when unsuitable for vegans. It is well worth checking out though.

The Vegetarian Society has also directed me to their list of approved products with can be found here.

If anyone knows of any other good websites which lists out vegetarian lagers then feel free to get in contact!

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5 comments

  1. Hello! Wondering if you are still sure about this list? I have just recently found out about Guinness brews and was so disappointed to find out the only beer I actually love is off limits to me, a 20 year+ vegetarian. When I do a search on “Harp”, I see it is also a Guinness brew. Wondering if this (Harp) is the exception I have been looking for? Thank you!

    1. Hi Julie – unfortunately many beers are made with isinglass and Guinness is one of them. Barnivore and the vegetarian society are good sources to look if you’re looking for more information. I’m not sure what you mean by ‘Harp’? Thanks, Helen

  2. Hi
    Does anyone know if Singha beer is
    Vegetarian?
    Thanks

    1. Hi Sarah – I’m afraid I don’t know. It certainly isn’t vegan, but it might be vegetarian. I’ve had a look at their website and it doesn’t say anything. It might be worth contacting them directly. They might be more likely to reply to a tweet than an email. Let me know if you find out!

      1. Thanks, I’ll try the tweet, as I emailed them about 4 months ago and heard nothing 😦

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