The term Vegan was first used in 1944 when a small group of vegetarians decided to take all dairy, eggs and other animal products out of their diet completely and used tjhe term 'The emancipation of animals from exploitation'. In 1979 the Vegan Society became a registered charity.
What is a vegan?
A vegan is someone who avoids meat, chicken, fish, shellfish, eggs, dairy, honey and any food or drink containing ingredients that come from animals. This includes marshmallows, gummy sweets and chewing gum!
They do not wear leather, fur, wool or silk.
They eat vegetables and fruit, lentils, beans, tofu, nuts, seeds and a wide variety of grains.
Why do people become vegans?
There are three main reasns for becoming a vegan.
For ethical reasons regarding cruelty to animals and farming techniques.
For health reasons as plant based diets lower the risk of heart disease and type 2 diabetes and to avoiod the side effects of the hormones and antibiotics that are fed to animals in te food chain.
For environmental reasons. Animal agriculture (cows, pigs, sheep etc) contribute 65% of nitrous oxide emissions and comprise 35-40% global methane emissions and 9% of carbone dioxide emissions. These are considered the three principal greenhouse gases involved in air polution and climate change. It takes up to 19,550 liters of water to produce 1/2 kilo of beef, this is 43 times more water than it takes to create 1/2 kilo of wheat or other grain. Deforestation is another environmental issue as so much ground is cleared to be available for growing the crops to feed animals for our food.