Is gin vegan? Can vegans drink gin?

Most gins on the market are vegan friendly. So yes vegans can drink gin! Hurrah! And phew! 

The whole York Gin range is vegan - shop for our vegan gins here

Safe ingredients

Gin’s basic ingredients are spirit alcohol, water and botanicals - the herbs, spices, plants and fruits that give gin its flavour. 

One of these botanicals (juniper berries) must be present and has to give the spirit its predominant flavour. If it doesn’t have this predominant flavour, it’s not gin! 

The other botanicals can be pretty much anything else the distiller wants to add. Popular botanicals include lemon, coriander and peppercorns. These and many others are fine for vegans.

Watch out for these

But you should watch out for the following botanicals and practices which will make the gin out of bounds for vegans: 


Some gins use honey as a natural sweetener. It’s the most common non-vegan ingredient. As an animal product, many vegans avoid it. 

Other non-vegan ingredients 

Other non-vegan ingredients include ants, gelatin, isinglass (derived from fish bladders), and carmine (from insects - used for colouring). Anty Gin using red wood ants is made by the Cambridge Distillery, costing £220 a bottle! 

Beeswax is sometimes used as a cap seal. Another animal product. 

Is tonic water vegan? 

Most tonic water is vegan - combining carbonated water, quinine, sweeteners, and sometimes flavourings like elderflower and lemon. Quinine is derived from cinchona tree’s bark.

So, you should be fine drinking a G&T as a vegan. One of the York Gin range and a Fever-Tree is our recommendation. Both 100% safe for vegans!

Try a York Gin & Tonic Tasting Experience with six miniature York Gins and six Fever-Tree cans.

21st Apr 2022 York Gin

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