Organic ethyl alcohol is made from organic sugar cane that has been grown in farms without pesticides or chemicals and processed in specific distilleries; certified by the Food Chemicals Codex (FCC). Some uses of organic vegan ethyl alcohol include liquors. In fact, many distilled spirits are vegan. Organic vegan ethanol is in skin care products, medicine production and the perfume industry. Lab Alley offers a wide variety of certified vegan organic ethanol at the best prices.

The maximum concentration of ethanol that can be achieved via distillation is 95.6% since water and ethanol form an azeotropic mixture. For many applications in food research and food production, absolute ethanol (obtained through subsequent adsorption treatments) is not required, and 95% ethanol meets the chemical requirements. The most common substrate for bioethanol in the United States is corn, due to its abundance, but it requires pretreatment including wet-milling and enzymatic de-saccharification, and may still result in byproduct impurities. Sugar cane alcohol requires less preparatory steps because sugar is readily broken down by yeast, and therefore has a lower risk of non-water biproducts of fermentation. Consequently, the production of 95% ethanol from sugar cane is a relatively efficient process compared to other substrates and other concentrations.

Sugar and its derivatives (including ethanol) are generally accepted as vegan by virtue of being plant-derived. However, many strict vegans are aware of transgressions in the food system such as the widespread use of bone char during processing of sugarcane. Bone char is made by charring animal bones, most commonly from cattle and pigs, resulting in a black porous material that works well as an adsorbent. Hence, many ethical vegans are wary of sugarcane-derived products. Activated carbon is a more modern vegan alternative to bone char, which can be used to refine sugar from sugarcane. It is also commonly used in the purification of food grade ethanol. This allows sugarcane-derived ethanol to be eligible for vegan labeling. Furthermore, the use of bone char is not permitted by USDA organic regulations. Our ethanol meets the standards for USDA Organic certification, which restricts the use of bone char in processing, as well as the types of pesticides/fungicides permitted during farming.

Any food product intended to bear the label “vegan” or “organic” must account for all ingredients and processing aids. Ethanol is a common antimicrobial, carrier solvent for flavors and other additives, and processing aid for many common foods. These functions may be even more necessary where traditional, non-vegan processing is not feasible. For example, traditional baking may incorporate animal products such as butter and eggs. Where those products are eliminated, new innovations are needed to compensate for the change in flavor, texture, and baking chemistry. Ethanol is an excellent carrier solvent for flavor extracts and texturizing “gums” that can be used to make vegan substitutes that are acceptable to consumers. Moreover, many food innovations are concerned with the production of plant-based substitutes for animal products like meat and cheese. These products often use plant-sourced protein isolates as a base, including pea and lentil isolates. The best method to manipulate the flavor and functional chemistry of protein isolates is via treatment with ethanol. Food grade, vegan ethanol can be used to remove grassy off-aromas from protein isolates, and control physical properties to create better foaming and emulsifying agents.

The supply chain is becoming longer and longer and consumers are becoming further removed from the food they eat with each innovation. Therefore, labels such as “organic” and “vegan” are becoming more important to consumers because it helps to keep them in touch with the entire life cycle of their food. While only a small proportion of the US population is vegan, nearly 40% of Americans strive to eliminate animal products in favor of plant-based foods where possible, according to research performed by a market research firm, NielsenIQ.

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