Are you trying to stick to a vegan or dairy-free diet? If so, you might be wondering if vegan food contains dairy. The answer: vegan food is always dairy-free and below, we get into how and why that is.
By the most traditional definition, vegan food includes no dairy. That’s because vegan foods have no substances derived from animals in them, and since the dawn of time (or at least since the dawn of cows, sheep, and goats) dairy has always been derived from animals. Bottom line: choosing vegan food means you’re choosing dairy-free products.
Not always. Dairy-free food can still contain ingredients derived from an animal source such as honey or eggs. For a product to be truly vegan, it must be completely plant-based without any ingredient derived from animals.
Lactose-free dairy isn’t vegan. Foods labeled as “lactose-free,” which are still made from real dairy, have enzymes added to them to break down the lactose so your body doesn’t have to. This means lactose-free milk still has milk in it. As a result, it’s not a vegan option.
Your search for vegan and/or dairy-free foods can be accomplished in four ways:
First things first, you should choose a variety of fresh fruits, vegetables and whole grains which are always vegan, dairy-free, and plant-based. Yet, if you’re looking for more options in your grocery aisle, start your search by looking at the label, ingredients, and allergen statements.
You’ll want to then check the ingredient list for any animal-derived ingredients, especially when considering vegan or dairy-free options.
If you have health reasons for avoiding dairy, your best bet may be to look directly at the allergen disclosure statement. Sometimes products that might not seem like they have dairy in them may have dairy ingredients. Be sure to check the ingredient list and allergen disclosure statement to make sure a product is truly dairy-free.
Again, if you’re lactose intolerant, you might still be able to consume these products without problems. If you’re allergic to milk or animal dairy, avoid them.
A company with unclear or contradictory labeling practices is not worthy of your trust. Instead, try to source products from companies you know you can trust to provide clear, accurate, and transparent ingredient information.
We invite you to look closely at Pacific Foods’ product labels to see whether we pass the simplicity test. While not every ingredient comes straight from the garden, all of our ingredients will be familiar to you. To find Pacific Foods at a retailer near you, shop now.