Although veganism is the fastest growing lifestyle movement in the UK, many people still know little about it. Here are some frequently asked questions, along with their answers.
Q: What is the definition of a vegan?
The Vegan Society defines veganism as a “way of living which seeks to exclude, as far as is possible and practicable, all forms of exploitation of, and cruelty to, animals for food, clothing or any other purpose.”
Q: What is the difference between a vegan and a vegetarian?
A: A vegetarian abstains from eating meat. A vegan does not eat any products or by products from an animal. This includes: meat, dairy, eggs and honey. Many vegans also choose not to wear animal products such as leather and wool.
Q: How many vegans are there currently in the UK?
A: The Vegan Society estimates the number of vegans in the UK to be at 542,000 and counting.
Q: Isn’t it hard to find vegan food in normal supermarkets?
A: Surprisingly, no. Many supermarkets now offer a variety of vegan options such as dairy free milks and cheeses, and vegan meat alternatives.
Q: Is concern about animal ethics the only reason people go vegan?
A: In short, no. There are lots of reasons people go vegan, but the three main ones are animal ethics, the environment and health reasons.
Q: How does veganism help the environment?
A: Animal agriculture is responsible for 18% of greenhouse gas emissions and requires massive amounts of food, land, energy and water. Many vegans cut out animal products to reduce the demand for agriculture of this kind.
Q: Why do vegans not eat honey?
A: Vegans believe that bees make honey for bees, and not humans, and therefore it is not theirs to take. Contrary to popular belief, bees do need a certain amount of honey to survive, but many commercial operations may take all of the honey.
Find out more:
- Interactive map of vegan restaurants in Bournemouth, Poole and Christchurch
- Social media and stigma: vegans from Bournemouth (and beyond) speak out