This article was originally posted on Constant Delights
Did you know that vegan claims may mean virtually nothing and cannot be trusted?
Simply stated, vegan claims are often wishy-washy as any company can self-proclaim “vegan” on a label, and that’s misleading when there’s a global lack of definition, accountability, and testing for vegan label claims.
Beveg Certified Vegan
You may be asking yourself, what does that really mean? It means that vegan claims without vegan certification and on-site audits are like the wild west. Anyone can claim vegan, and there’s no required standard or technical definition in place to make that claim credible, which means any vegan label claim cannot be trusted.
Though transparency in ingredients and processes are necessary and expected under consumer protection laws, somehow existing laws dub the vegan consumer at this time. This matters not only to the ethical vegan but is a mainstream concern.
Allergen sufferers, those that follow a Kosher diet, and even flexitarians leaning into a plant-based diet, for example, rely on “free-from” animal contaminant vegan labels to make their purchasing choices.
“We live in an age of information, where we are used to getting all facts and expect transparency. Whether it’s transparency in politics, relationships, or labels… no one wants to be lied to,” says Carissa Kranz, Esq., BeVeg International Vegan Certification Firm founder and CEO.
It’s no secret that plant-based vegan products are taking over store shelves, and sales are skyrocketing at unprecedented rates. An allergic customer or Kosher customer cares about valid certified vegan claims for different reasons (health safety / legal liability / religious law) does not dilute the vegan message but empowers the bottom line.
Brands that market vegan and benefit from plant-based purchasing trends should be required to certify vegan and undergo a rigorous audit. While consumer demand is driving more plant-based products to hit store shelves, consumer demand will also drive proper truthful vegan labelling.
While the consumer drives this demand, it is crucial to understand that adequately labelled certified vegan products are plant-based, but something labelled plant-based is not necessarily vegan.
Plant-based is a newer term coined for the flexitarian that comes with a less strict, more flexible meaning. It means it is based primarily on plants, but it does not represent or legally imply it is “free from animal contamination” and cruelty-free.
So how does the consumer gain clarity on what’s vegan and help the cause?
Even though consumer protection laws are in place to help consumers make informed purchasing choices, many plant-based consumers are misled and unable to make such informed decisions. “This can only change if the consumer understands the plight and begins to demand factory vegan certification transparency of process with audits and testing,” says Kranz.
BeVeg, set out a robust and uniform global vegan certification standard and is educating about the realities of factory production and products claimed to be vegan. BeVeg is leading the world with its robust ISO accredited vegan certification trademark.
Many may not understand the importance of “accreditation”, but that means BeVeg set out a globally recognised vegan certification technical standard to hold vegan label claims accountable. BeVeg is the first, and only, accredited vegan certification standard in the world to achieve this level of industry expertise.
The BeVeg vegan symbol is considered the most credible benchmark for vegan quality control and assurance, giving plant-based brands the confidence to access new capital markets and establish a new business that meets vegan, plant-based, flexitarian consumer expectations.
Global certification bodies, as third-party auditing firms that audit against technical standards and warrant assurances that are consistent with set out standards, see the value in the Beveg program and are enrolling globally to include the BeVeg vegan certification program audit as an add on audit or additional audit to other food safety, and quality management standards.