Do you know what is in your wine? Eggs, milk, fish, shellfish, wheat?

Do you know what is in your wine? Eggs, milk, fish, shellfish, wheat?

Allergykids Foundation had an interesting online article which stated that allergens can be added during ‘fining’, which is the process of clarifying wine, by removing undesirable odors, colors, and flavors. One of the most widely used fining agents is bentonite (a type of clay) which is vegan and gluten free and often used when making biodynamic wines.  Other fining agents are egg white, egg shell, casein (milk), hydrolyzed wheat gluten isolate, chitin (made from crustacean), gelatin (from animal or fish protein), isinglass (substance from fish bladders, often sturgeon) and a host of other synthetic and natural materials. Lysozyme, derived from egg whites, is used to control lactic acid bacteria in the wine.  It can be added at several different points in the wine making process.  The lysozyme is not removed nor settles so it stays in the wine. Studies measuring the presence of allergens have had mixed results.  In a study conducted in Australia in 2006 no measurable allergens were found.1    Contrary to the Australian study, the European Food Safety Authority showed there could be adverse allergic reactions from wine due to lysozyme. Before you purchase wine you should be aware that some vintners believe the filtration process reduces flavor.  Bottles of unfiltered wine will most likely contain allergens used in the production process.  Unfiltered wines tend to be ‘high end’ or expensive varieties.   The wine label may or may not disclose whether the wine is unfiltered.   This information further complicates choosing a safe wine. If you would like to make drinking your favourite wine experience a bit safer, we have a wide rage of alcoholic beverages that may assist in taking the worry out of your social interaction. Why not give us a try?

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