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What is a Vegan?

Vegans, much like vegetarians, do not eat animal meat. But vegans go beyond simply avoiding animal meat by also steering clear of animal byproducts such as milk, eggs, and cheese as well. Vegans also don't consume honey, whey, lard, or gelatin, or use things like goose down, leather, or wool. Also off limits are cosmetics and other products in the marketplace that have been tested on animals.

The word Vegan dates back to 1944 when Donald Watson, founder of the Vegan Society, coined the word Vegan in the first issue of The Vegan News, by taking the first and last letters of the word vegetarian to create his orthodox version of vegetarianism.

Anticipating the possibility of reluctance in his new found vegan lifestyle, Watson made this statement:

    “A common criticism is that the time is not yet ripe for our reform. Can time ever be ripe for any reform unless it is ripened by human determination? Did Wilberforce wait for the ‘ripening’ of time before he commenced his fight against slavery? Did Edwin Chadwick, Lord Shaftesbury, and Charles Kingsley wait for such a non-existent moment before trying to convince the great dead weight of public opinion that clean water and bathrooms would be an improvement?”

There are several reasons for choosing a vegan lifestyle:

  • Vegans don't contribute to the mistreatment and slaughter of animals.
  • Vegans generally enjoy better health through a cleaner, plant based, whole foods diet.
  • As a vegan your environmental footprint is greatly reduced.

To learn the many reasons for living a vegan life, check out our page; Why Go Vegan?

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