Veganism and vegan shopping in Finland

This website, wegaanituotteet.net, gathers lists of vegan (food) products available in Finnish grocery stores and supermarkets. The site serves as a tool to help find and recognize vegan products when grocery shopping. You can also learn about animal ingredients found in food, drinks, shoes, clothing, and cosmetics, as well as information on cruelty-free cosmetics, supplements and vegan-friendly specialty shops in Finland.

The product lists can be helpful for those just beginning with veganism and for long-term vegans alike, those who are interested in reducing their intake of animal products, people with food intolerances and allergies, as well as for family members and friends of vegans.

An example of refigerated veggie products sold in regular supermarkets.

On this English summary page you will find a translated list of animal ingredients and terminology, and a basic overview of vegan product availability in Finland.

Shopping for vegan food in Finland

In recent years, vegan products have gained popularity, and are becoming more readily available in Finnish supermarkets and even smaller corner shops. In many stores you can find a separate designated veggie (“vege”) product shelf. Several Finnish food companies have developed plant-based product ranges and new products are launched seemingly weekly. Vegan options have become appealing to the population at large, and vegan products are consumed by many others than just vegans.

Basic vegetarian staple items are abundant, such as fresh and frozen vegetables, fruits and berries, bread (nearly always vegan), grains, beans, canned goods, dry soy/bean products, condiments, margarine, juices, sweets, snacks and chocolate.

Every store carries tofu and plant-based dairy products. In dairy-loving Finland you can find a wide variety of vegan milks, creams, ice creams, cheeses, puddings, yogurts, even quark and creme fraiche by the brands Alpro, Planti, GoGreen, Almond Breeze, Rice Dream and Oatly.

Grocery shopping in Finland: meat substitutes in the frozen section (mostly, but not all vegan) and vegan-labeled loose candy assortment.

Some processed meat-subtitutes (Hälsans Kök sausages, , Huhtahyvät vegetarian meats, most Quorn products) found in supermarkets are non-vegan, as they contain egg. Vegan meat-like products are sold by the brands Anamma, Oumph, Hälsans Kök, Wheaty, Bon Vegan, LikeMeat, Terra, Tzay, Apetit, Familia verde, Gold & Green (pulled oats), Verso (Härkis) and Pouttu, just to name a few. Frozen and microwavable ready-meals, lunch options and salad bars are also increasingly common.

vegekauppa

Vegan shop Vegekauppa in Turku.

Products such as nutritional yeast, gluten flour, seitan, tempeh, egg replacers, agar-agar, vegan white and milk chocolate, vegan vitamin D and omega-supplements are usually sold only in specialty shops (health food or organic) and online. In Finland there is a vegan store chain Vegekauppa, which carries an impressive variety of vegan products in its three locations (Helsinki, Tampere, Turku). Check out the rest of Finland’s vegan-friendly shops! Most larger cities have oriental or Asian markets which sell vegan items not found in regular stores.

Animal ingredients and vegan terminology in Finnish

Many packaged products have multi-language ingredient lists, sometimes including English. Very few manufacturers have adopted labelling products vegan, but once in a while  you do find some sort of logo or mention on the package.

Please note: many of the following words are also used joined with other words in the form of a compound word. Some examples: “lihaliemi” (meat broth), “kananrasva” (chicken fat) , “voiöljy” (butter oil), “juustoaromi” (cheese flavoring) and “herajauhe” (whey powder).

  • Liha – meat
  • Naudanliha / Nauta – beef
  • Sianliha / Sika – pork
  • Kinkku – ham
  • Kana – chicken
  • Kala – fish
  • Lohi – salmon
  • Poronliha / poro – reindeer
  • Hirvenliha / hirvi – moose/elk
  • Kananmuna / muna – egg
  • Keltuainen – egg yolk
  • Valkuainen – egg white
  • Maito – milk
  • Kerma – cream
  • Jogurtti – yogurt
  • Piimä – buttermilk
  • Rahka – quark
  • Kermaviili – sour cream
  • Juusto – cheese
  • Voi – butter
  • Hera – whey 
  • Laktoosi – lactose
  • Kaseiini – casein
  • Liivate – gelatin
  • Gelatiini – gelatin
  • Hunaja – honey
  • Mehiläisvaha – beeswax
  • E120 – carmine (from insects)
  • E901 – beeswax (from insects)
  • E904 – shellac (from insects)
  • Vegaaninen – vegan (adj.)
  • Vegaani – a vegan (noun)
  • Vegaaniruokavalio – a vegan diet
  • Kasviperäinen – plant-based / plant origin
  • Kasvipohjainen – plant-based
  • Vege – veggie (vegetarian or vegan)
  • Kasvissyöjä – a vegetarian
  • Kasvisruoka – vegetarian food
  • Kasvisvaihtoehto – vegetarian option