Guinness to pour vegan-friendly pints from 2016

LONDON - Vegans and strict vegetarians will soon be able to sup a hearty pint of the black stuff, after Guinness revealed it will remove fish guts from the brewing process.

British drinks giant Diageo announced on Tuesday that its iconic St James's Gate Brewery in Dublin will stop using isinglass - a gelatinous byproduct of the fishing industry - in its filtration methods for Guinness.

"We are at the beginning of the project to install the new system," a company spokeswoman told AFP.

"It is a complex project and will take many months to install and test before it goes live and is used in the production of Guinness.

"We hope to have the new system up and running by late 2016 with the liquid on the shelves for consumers to buy soon after." Diageo has long faced demands from vegans to remove isinglass from its production of Ireland's unofficial national drink.

"Our brewers and engineering teams at St James's Gate are continually working to drive improvement as well as assuring the quality and craft of the brewing techniques developed here over the last 256 years," Diageo added in a statement.

"Isinglass has been used widely within the brewing industry as a means of filtration for decades.

"However, because of its use we could not label Guinness as suitable for vegetarians and have been looking for an alternative solution for some time.

"We are now pleased to have identified a new process through investment in a state-of-the-art filtration system at St James's Gate which, once in place, will remove the use of isinglass in the brewing process."