As we all know, Vegans are an opinionated and passionate bunch, saving the planet and sticking it to those meat-n-dairy eaters at any given opportunity.
But those there Vegans aren’t always the unified front that they may seem.
There is a spectrum of reasons that one may choose a plant-based diet, be that for the benefit of personal health, ethical values, global sustainability or even a financial choice.
The personal reasons for becoming vegan are as varied as the personal decisions on how they are vegan, which can cause somewhat of a schism in a community!
Here are 5 Things That Vegans Just Can’t Agree On!
Hoooootchy Mama! Honey is such a hot topic amongst Vegans that most vegan forums have banned the discussion of it, lest fists fly like a butterfly and sting like a bee!
There are 2 main schools of thought here. The first is that honeybees actually make too much honey for their hive and it makes no impact on them whatsoever to harvest a carefully calculated amount. No suffering = no problem.
The second is quite simply that honey is the by product of animals so does not fall within the vegan diet. Also, there’s suspicion about the treatment of the bees and the effects of human interference causing colony collapse.
4. Second Hand Leather
Obviously, if you are in the game for ethical reasons, wearing the skin of your bovine sisters is an understandable and flat out no-no…
Buuuuuuuut, if you are choosing a plant based diet for sustainability reasons, which will include considering the carbon cost of creating new products, you may feel that purchasing a piece of clothing (that already exists and you have no moral objection to wearing) would simply be wasteful! Especially if you were buying it from a charity shop, where by the proceeds would go towards benefiting others.
3. food that would be wasted anyway
“Hey, want the last slice of this vegetarian pizza? I’m just going to throw it away anyway!”
!MORAL DILEMMA FOR SOME!
This falls into a similar argument as the second hand leather; the logic goes that if food is going to be wasted anyway and you’re not contributing to it either financially or carbon-ally, surely it’s ACTUALLY for the best..?
(As a side note, this argument doesn’t include “occasionally eating meat” as that is “Flexitarian” and I think everyone agrees that that is in no way ‘vegan’)
2. Ethical eggs
Here is a question that Vegans get asked A LOT:
“Yeah but… right… what if, right… what if, you knew someone that owned chickens and you knew they were well looked after and happy and healthy? Would you eat those eggs?”
Once again, this comes down to the reason why someone chooses to be Vegan; if it’s sustainability, you might be able to justify to yourself (which is the only person you have to justify it to!).
If you do it for health reasons, you may also be able to justify it to yourself, dependent on whether science says eggs are healthy that week or not.
There is actually a dietary group of vegans who allow themselves eggs called vEGGans, which I think deserves acknowledgement, just for the pun alone!
Yeah, this one is bad news, team.
It was recently revealed that Avocados (that’s right, muvva chuffin’ Avocados!!) AREN’T TECHNICALLY VEGAN!!!
Almost all avocado farmers use bees in an “unnatural way” (it’s not as kinky as it sounds) to pollinate and grow avocados, meaning that animals are being exploited for this by-product of their hard work! #ShockedFace
The Vegan Society swooped in on this with some reassuring reassurance.
"Vegans avoid using animals as far as possible and practicable.
"We are aware that many forms of farming involve indirect harm to animals but it is unfortunately not possible or practicable to avoid the destruction of other animals in most farming at this time.
"However, we do not consider that just because it is not possible to avoid one hundred percent of the cruelty, suffering and exploitation to animals that we should not bother at all.
"Vegans make a huge contribution to the reduction in suffering and death caused to animals and we would welcome any changes made to farming practises that support this."
So rest easy, your official Vegan Membership shan’t be revoke for eating avocados but I do think that it’s interesting in highlighting that even The Vegan Society have created a grey area in which veganism can operate.
Ultimately, one thing that vegans can agree on is that anyone making any sort of effort to move to towards a plant based diet is doing the right thing and should be supported.
Also, I think it’s universally agreed, by vegans and non-vegans alike, that no one has ever had their mind changed by being told their wrong on social media but, good lordy, I’m sure that’s not going to stop some of you =P
GARY TRO is a stand up comedian and writer.
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