Is Irn Bru Vegan? (Not for Strict Vegans)


On social media and other blog posts, many claim that Irn Bru is vegan.

And by the most basic definition of a food being allowed to be labeled vegan, it is, but there’s one ingredient I’d like to point out.

Ingredients in Irn Bru

Here’s the ingredient list of Irn Bru:

Carbonated Water, Sugar, Citric Acid, Natural and Artificial Flavors, Sodium Benzoate (Preservative), Caffeine, FD&C Yellow 6, Ferric Ammonium Citrate.

Since it’s made in Scotland, we don’t need to worry about bone char being used to make the sugar.

The makers of Irn Bru themselves have said it’s “vegan” on social media, so that rules out any concerns about the natural flavors as well.

irn bru vegan mention on social media

And yet, I wouldn’t drink it because of the Yellow 6.

“Yellow 6,” also known as Sunset Yellow, is one of the most popular artificial colors that are often tested on animals.

Now, artificial colors are controversial among vegans, but most strict vegans won’t consume them.

It’s not a “huge” deal in the grand scheme of animal suffering, but it’s still a small part, and you should at least consider it before buying Irn Bru.

In summary: Yes, Irn Bru meets the minimum standards for being called “vegan” by most, but many vegans will still not want to drink it.

About the author

Dale Cudmore

Your friendly neighborhood vegan from Toronto. Chemical engineer turned semi-professional soccer player and freelance nutrition writer. I've been vegan for years and try to make life easier for others by sharing what I've learned.

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