Hey, I’m vegan. What does this mean for my beloved brew?
Vegan coffee and vegan-friendly coffee: is there a difference? And what about decaf? Is decaf coffee vegan, too?
Although it might seem simple at the outset (coffee bean = plant = vegan), we know that there are lots of questions you might have if you’re following a vegan diet. And that’s good! We like questions. And we like coffee (who’d have thought it). So that’s why we’ve put together a cover-all-the-bases guide to help you choose a coffee that’s right for your lifestyle and still tastes awesome.
Is coffee vegan?
We’re guessing that there are a fair amount of coffee lovers amongst the 1.5 million vegans currently living in the UK. 1,499,999 coffee lovers, perhaps?
If you’re following a plant-based diet and vegan lifestyle and don’t want to put a lid on you beloved java, then we’ve got some good news for you… you don’t need to! Because coffee is 100% vegan. Whoop whoop!
Coffee beans come from a bush-like plant, so ticks the ‘is it plant-based?’ box. The beans (which are in fact seeds) grow in pairs inside the coffee cherry. Cherries are red or purple in colour and encase the beans with their pulpy white fruit.
We would always recommend being uber-wary of coffees marketed as ‘exclusively vegan’. All coffee is vegan; it’s impossible to have a non-vegan coffee when it’s drunk black. So, good news, plant-based pals, you can keep on brewing!
Ahh, yes, but is coffee vegan-friendly?
We know that veganism is not just about choosing plant-based options. Veganism is a way of life that’s all about treating the world well and giving our planet one mighty hug. So, although all coffee is vegan, vegans (or anyone, for that matter) might not want to drink all brands of coffee.
That’s because not all coffee brands are ethical and sustainable. You might find a commodity coffee that’s cheap as chips, but is it ethical? Were the farmers paid a fair price? Perhaps not. Take a look at speciality coffee and you’ll find a different story. Here at Two Chimps, we roast the very finest speciality coffees; top-scoring coffee beans that are ethical, sustainable and 100% traceable. Our beans might cost a little more than the freeze-dried stuff you can grab at the supermarket, but this assures you that the growers receive a fair price. A bit more than fair (and Fairtrade) because we pay between 30 and 150% more than the going rate for all our speciality beans. So take a sip of Two Chimps and do a little jiggle, because you’ve found a coffee that’s vegan, vegan-friendly and outright delicious!
Eco-friendly coffee from a climate-positive roastery
The planet is top of the list, whatever lifestyle choice you opt to follow. Good news, then, that our speciality coffee beans get big green ticks from every angle. We’re a climate positive roastery, which means we offset our carbon footprint through tree-planting and other carbon reducing projects. We’ve got our own little (well, kinda big…) forest, which you can check out for yourself!
The perfect coffee packaging doesn’t exist (does the perfect anything?), but we searched high and low for sustainable packaging that meets our high standards. And we’re pretty chuffed with the result. All our 250g and 500g bags are made from low density polyethylene, which bears the ‘group 4’ recyclable logo. They are made from a single material, which helps to avoid complications at the recycling plant, and can be recycled along with carrier bags and bread bags at most supermarkets or kerbside if your council allow.
We use eco-friendly glue dots and recyclable stickers, too, so no pesky extras stop the process at the final stage. Top stuff from start to finish, then!
Is decaffeinated coffee vegan?
We love decaf! Decaffeinated coffee is obviously a little different from regular coffee and this poses a question: is decaf coffee vegan too?
Simple answer here – yes! Coffee can be decaffeinated in a number of ways, none of which involve animal-derived products. The indirect-solvent and direct-solvent processes use chemical solutions to remove the caffeine from the unroasted coffee beans. Neither of these methods are chemical-free, but they are vegan.
We prefer to source beans decaffeinated through the high-quality Sparkling Water and Swiss Water processes. Why? Because they preserve every last bit of coffee flavour, while the chemical methods can leave your coffee tasting, well, a bit less coffee-ish. The Sparkling Water and Swiss Water methods, meanwhile are entirely chemical-free. They are organic and sustainable, too, because the by-products can be purified and reused.
Fancy a decaf that tastes a bit like cosy fruit crumble? Get brewing The Waving Goldfish!
The best vegan milk for coffee
Gone are the days when vegans could only dream of sipping smooth, milky coffee. Now, there are a LOT of plant-based milks on the market. Whether you’re crazy for cashew or are all about the almond, there are plenty of ways to enjoy milky coffee minus the dairy. Finding a good vegan milk for coffee can take some time, so we’re giving you a head start with our guide to the best non-dairy milks for coffee. Whether you’ve been vegan for years or just fancy a new flavour, this is the one-stop guide you need to check out!
Oh, and we’ll take a latte, please.
We’re not going to deck our coffee beans out in bells and banners to tell you they’re vegan. Because all coffee is vegan. It’s just that we go a bit further to give everyone coffee that’s ethical, climate positive and vegan friendly. Get a bag now!
Join the troop
And we will plant a tree