Calling all vegans


Britain's Co-op stores may not be the most glamorous supermarkets in the land but they are the most active in giving their customers maximum information, and that includes ingredient labeling in wines. Back labels on bottles of the Co-op's own label wines at the Co-op are far, far more explicit than anyone else's and I believe are the precedent for what will become the norm.


It's probably not surprising then that the Vegan Society have given the Co-op's vegan wine range their Best Drink award at the 2006 Vegan Society AGM on Saturday. The Co-op explicitly labels appropriate own-label products as "suitable for vegans," indeed all the wines listed below can be drunk by vegans, those who eschew animal products of all sorts, so not just meat and fish but also milk, cheese, eggs and so on. All sorts of fining materials – casein, isinglass, gelatin – are therefore out of the question and indeed the vegan and vegetarian movements have had a hand in the current tendency to use these organic fining agents less in favour of the likes of bentonite. Bad news for vegans is that of course all those top quality wines fined by egg whites or albumen are out.


Not that the vegan movement seems particularly widespread in Western Australia. Michael Kerrigan, winemaker at Howard Park, was in London recently talking about his experiences labelling Tesco's Tingleup Riesling. "Vegans? What the **** are they supposed to be? I'm supposed to make wines and labels specially for them?"


Co-op's own-label vegan wine range:


Co-op Champagne Les Pioneers

Co-op Beaujolais

Co-op Fitou

Co-op Cotes du Rhone

Co-op Cotes du Rhone Reserve Red

Co-op Vin De Pays D'Oc Cabernet Sauvignon

Co-op Vin De Pays D'Oc Shiraz

Co-op Vin De Pays D'Oc Chardonnay

Co-op Chablis

Co-op Vin De Pays Cotes de Gascogne

Co-op Vin De Pays D'Oc Shiraz Rose

Co-op Lambrusco Bianco

Co-op Orvieto Classico

Co-op Fairtrade Cape Cabernet Sauvignon

Co-op Fairtrade Cape Cinsault Shiraz

Co-op Fairtrade Cape Chardonnay

Co-op Fairtrade Cape Sauvignon Blanc

Co-op Fairtrade Cape Chenin Colombard

Co-op Australian Lime Tree Grenache

Co-op Australian Lime Tree Merlot

Co-op California Ruby Cabernet 'Laid Back Ruby'

Co-op Argentine Bonarda Shiraz

Co-op Argentine Malbec

Co-op Centolla Pinot Noir

Co-op Chilean Cabernet Sauvignon

Co-op Chilean Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve

Co-op Chilean Merlot

Co-op Fairtrade Argentine Bonarda Shiraz

Co-op Fairtrade Argentine Shiraz

Co-op Fairtrade Chilean Carmenere

Co-op Cape Cellar Springs Sauvignon Blanc

Co-op Cape Young Vines Shiraz Rose

Co-op Explorers Vineyard Sauvignon Blanc

Co-op California Colombard Chardonnay 'The Big Chill'

Co-op California The Pink Chill White Zinfandel

Co-op Chilean Chardonnay

Co-op Chilean Gewurztraminer

Co-op Fairtrade Chilean Oaked Semillon

Co-op Fairtrade Chilean Merlot Rose

Co-op Island Vines Cyprus Red

Co-op Romanian Prairie Merlot

Co-op Bulgarian Chardonnay

Co-op Spanish Red

Co-op Casa Del Sol Sauvignon Verdejo

Co-op Sparkling Chardonnay

Co-op Cava Rosado Brut

Co-op Tempranillo Brut Red