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The History of Veganism

Vegan: noun

noun: vegan; plural noun: vegans

A person who does not eat or use animal products.

Vegan, this isn't just a noun, it is something that you do. Being vegan means more then just not eating animals or using animal products, it also mean living in a way that causes the least harm to animals and the environment.

Living like this is very deliberate and involves making a lot of choices that may not help you, but do make a positive difference. For example, on a hot day you and your family decide to go out to eat, when you ask for a drink you are offered a straw. Straws are only small things, but millions of them are used every year and many of them end up in the sea, choking and poisoning the creatures that live in the water. Deciding to not use a straw would be the right thing to do and as a vegan these are the type of choices that you will be making everyday.

The History of Veganism

The word "vegan" was created by Donald Watson in November 1944. He was vegetarian, he did not eat meat. He then decided to give up dairy products and eggs and he began publishing a newsletter which he called Vegan News. He got the word vegan from vegetarian by taking “etari” out of the word which left v e g a and n – vegan.

Watson decided that "veganism" was a type of vegetarian diet that excludes eggs, dairy products and all other animal-derived ingredients. Watson said that veganism was

“[…] a philosophy and 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; and by extension, promotes the development and use of animal-free alternatives for the benefit of humans, animals and the environment. In dietary terms it denotes the practice of dispensing with all products derived wholly or partly from animals.”


Watson started writing a newsletter called Vegan News and later started the vegan Society which is still running today, helping vegans all over the world and fighting for animal rights.

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