In August 2022, a new official code for food standards was published in the Argentina Official Gazette which, for the first time in the country, defines what are vegan and vegetarian food products, and how can be labelled — in essence, officially recognising the existence of vegan food. Both vegan organisations and the meat and dairy industry have welcomed the new code, as they consider that it will prevent customers from getting confused. 

With Resolution 5/2022, Article 229 is incorporated into the Code, which was drafted as follows: “Products that do not contain ingredients of animal origin and/or their derivatives (including additives and adjuvants) may include the legends ‘Only with ingredients of vegetable origin’, ‘100% vegetable’, ‘Made from plants’, provided that the processors and importers prove such condition to the competent Health Authority within the framework of the authorization of the product. 

The term ‘vegan’ is reserved for products that do not contain ingredients of animal origin and/or their derivatives (including additives and adjuvants) and whose manufacturers and importers certify before the competent national bodies that their processes and management system guarantee compliance described above, which may be verified by an entity with official recognition. These products may include the following legends on their labels: ‘VEGAN PRODUCT’ or ‘VEGAN FOOD’.

The term ‘vegetarian’ is reserved for products that do not contain ingredients of animal origin and/or their derivatives (including additives and adjuvants), except for the following ingredients and/or their components or derivatives: milk, dairy products, eggs or egg products obtained from live animals, honey or bee products.”

The resolution also says that, in 2020, 12% of the Argentine population is vegan and vegetarian. The Argentine Vegan Union thanked “the responsible authorities of the Ministry of Health and the Ministry of Agriculture for the work done to be able to carry out this regulation that aims to order the hilarious confusion that exists in the labelling of products free of ingredients of animal origin.” This code only affects food, which means that clothes or cosmetic products not tested on animals are not included. We hope that the next step would be the Argentine state or its judiciary recognising veganism as a philosophical belief, and therefore protecting vegans from discrimination and harassment, as happened in Great Britain in 2020.  

Jordi Casamitjana
“Originally from Catalonia, but resident in the UK for several decades, Jordi is a vegan zoologist and author, who has been involved in different aspects of animal protection for many years. In addition to scientific research, he has worked mostly as an undercover investigator, animal welfare consultant, and animal protection campaigner. He has been an ethical vegan since 2002, and in 2020 he secured the legal protection of all ethical vegans in Great Britain from discrimination in a landmark employment tribunal case that was discussed all over the world. He is also the author of the book, ‘Ethical Vegan: a personal and political journey to change the world’.