Jordi Casamitjana, the author of the book “Ethical Vegan”, defends the word “vegan” from the attack it has been exposed to from different fronts — including from within the vegan movement itself. 

I am an animal defender.

Since I had a poignant experience with a wasp in Barcelona in the 1980s that made me look at the members of the animal kingdom differently — you can read about it in an article I wrote about wasps — I decided that, in addition to studying non-human animals and hanging out with them, I needed to protect them from the harm caused by humans. That made me an animal protector, and eventually, I emigrated to the UK where I developed a career as such as in this country where animal protection has existed as a profession for longer. But in addition to trying to protect non-human animals (which I have been doing mostly by trying to stop people from harming them), I am also an animal defender.

In a broad context, a defender is a person who defends a particular thing or being that has been criticised or questioned, and who does so by arguing or acting in support of that thing or being. So, especially with my writing, I defend any group from the Animal Kingdom that has been unfairly criticised, disrespected, devalued, discriminated against, or misunderstood. This means that I used arguments and narratives to help change prejudicial perceptions about them and show the world how unfairly they have been treated. Part of such defending I have done with data, facts, and evidence that I have accumulated during research and investigations; part of it I have done by using philosophical reasoning and logic. However, to be effective in such defending, I have had to look beyond the animals themselves, into the circumstances of their lives that explain why they need defending. This means looking at those who disrespect them and abuse them and trying to understand why they do it, but also those who love them and help them and trying to understand why they protect them. That’s when I discovered the philosophy of veganism from which a transformative socio-political movement sprang. If successful, in a few generations it will create the Vegan World where there will no longer be any need to defend non-human animals.

But such a world will be difficult to build because those who are building it are in constant attack from different fronts. They are attacked by the preservers of the current carnist status quo who want to keep exploiting animals in a human-supremacist way, also by those who were supposed to be their allies but ended up betraying them for greed or convenience, or from those who were supposed to be vegans and ended up sabotaging their progress either by ignorance or naiveté. 

I realised that, in order to continue protecting animals, I had to begin defending veganism because this is the philosophy that will provide the most protection, and for longer — if it is successful in transforming society in such a significant way that it is no longer dominated by the carnist ideology. Nothing other than veganism can come close to achieving this, and this is why the veganism movement has been attacked from so many fronts and is at risk of either being cannibalised by other less effective movements, being diluted to the point of no recognition, or being outright destroyed without leaving any trace.

For example, in a new study, researchers at the University of Southern California set out to learn how vegan labelling influenced consumers, and they found that the basket without animal products that they were offering to 7000 participants was chosen just 20% of the time when it was labelled “vegan” but when it bore labels like “healthy” and “sustainable” more than twice as many people in the study selected it. An article from WedMD discussing this research is titled,  “Is ‘Vegan’ a Dirty Word? Study Finds It Turns Some People Off?

I must defend the vegan world, and to do that I must defend the veganism movement, the veganism philosophy, and now, it seems, I must also defend the word “vegan” for what it truly represents (not the “dirty word” some people think it is). This article is my attempt to do this at some length. 

The Origin of The Word “Vegan”

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Not always we have the luxury of knowing the precise origin of words we use, but we do know how the word vegan was created. Well, we know for sure that it happened in either late 1944 or early 1945 in England, and that the founders of the newly formed Vegan Society created the word (and later in 1988 the society finalised its definition after many years of fine-tuning it). What there is still some debate is about which of the pioneers of the Vegan Society came out with the word, and how exactly it was conceived. There are a couple of theories. 

Most people would assume — as this is even written in Wikipedia —  that the word was created by Donald Watson, the most well-known co-founder of the Vegan Society, during the meeting he had with other “separatists” of the Vegetarian Society (such as Sally Shrigley), one Sunday in early November 1944 (probably the 5th) at the London’s vegetarian restaurant called The Attic Club. They assume he made up the word that day, the very day they decided to leave the Vegetarian Society and create a new one, The Vegan Society, whose members would also abstain from milk, eggs, and honey, not just meat. However, it seems that it might not have been Watson who conceived the name and that it did not happen that very day, but some time later, after they asked other members for suggestions.

The Vegan Society says that the group felt a new word was required to describe the people who abstained from all animal products, something more concise than “non-dairy vegetarians”. They rejected words such as “dairyban”, “vitan”, and “benevore”. They settled on “vegan”, and even if Donald Watson was who made the final decision to choose this name, it seems that it did not come from him, but it was a suggestion from co-founders George A. Henderson and his wife Fay K. Henderson (who said the society should be called Allvega and the magazine Allvegan), or from his wife Dorothy Morgan, also a co-founder of the society. Later, Donald Watson described the word as containing the first three and last two letters of “vegetarian”, as the term marked “the beginning and end of vegetarian” — I am not sure if that was meant to be simply just a stylised version of the word, or he meant that veganism would finish vegetarianism, either as “complete” it for being incomplete, or replace it for being insufficient). Also, “Vega”’ was the name of a London vegetarian restaurant at that time, which might have provided some inspiration.

The word “Vegan” ended up being the title of the society’s magazine. In the second issue of the Vegan News magazine, published in February 1945, Watson reported: “Before the appearance of our first issue [November 24, 1944], Mr. and Mrs. G. A. Henderson suggested the word “Allvega”, with “Allvegan” as the magazine title. It was from this that the word Vegan was taken, and recently Mr. and Mrs. Henderson have written stating that they prefer the shorter version.”

However, at Donald Watson’s funeral in 2005, his daughter Janet mentioned that her mother Dorothy and Donald attended a dance one day, and there they discussed the founding of a new society, which Dorothy suggested could be called vegan. Regardless of who invented the word, the fact remains that Watson, in charge of the society during the first years of its formation, had to be the person to choose it — and he chose right. This is what he said in 1989 about it: “Looking back over the years from the vantage point of old age (78) I feel honoured to have been at the birth of this movement, and that as the person in sole charge for the 18 months before it was made democratic I had the awesome responsibility of choosing its name. I hope you all like it.” Later, in the year 2000, he said, “I sometimes feel that we had reached a watershed and if I hadn’t formed the Society, someone else may have done it, very soon, although it may have had a different name. I did appeal to my readers to suggest what the name might be, and I had a list of very bizarre suggestions, which some people may already have heard of – I won’t list them now – but, in an inspired moment, I settled for the word “vegan”, which was immediately accepted and, over the years, became part of our language and is now in almost every world dictionary, I suppose.”

The word “Vegan” can now be defined as, “Someone who practices veganism (noun); of or related to veganism (adjective); suitable for those who practice veganism (adjective).”  The Vegan Society has been defining “veganism” since its inception, having finalised the official definition in 1988, which is the following:  “Veganism is 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 animals, humans and the environment. In dietary terms, it denotes the practice of dispensing with all products derived wholly or partly from animals.”

“Vegan”, the Magical Word

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It is quite possible that many people came out with the word vegan at the same time because it is a pretty good word. I also think that, once anyone would have mentioned it, it would have stood up from all other suggestions pretty quickly. In many respects, it’s a perfect word. This is why I think it is:

  • Only one simple word, with no hyphens
  • It’s a short word, with just two syllables, and only five letters (all common letters)
  • It’s aesthetically pleasing, with a tall letter at the beginning (v), and a long letter in the middle (g) to balance up the look (or if in capitals, the V and the A balance each other well).
  • It’s easy to pronounce once you know how it is pronounced. 
  • It’s easy to abbreviate with just the letter V, as it is not one of the most common letters (some menus used Ve to differentiate it from vegetarian).
  • It’s a soft-sounding word which does not sound aggressive or sharp (It does not have sharp consonants), but mellow and gentle (like the philosophy) 
  • It’s easy to make a sign of it with one’s hand (the “V-sign” which some vegans started to reclaim)
  • It’s easy to translate in most languages (many of which decided to adopt it as it is), with just slight modifications (“vegana” in Portuguese/Italian, “veganer” in German/Norwegian, веган in Russian/Ukrainian, “vegà” in Catalan, “vegaan” in Estonian, “Weganin” in Polish, or “veganistisch” in Dutch,). 
  • It ends with “an” which works well for both “identities” (as in Frenchman, veteran, or lesbian ) and as an adjective (as in avian, Asian, or urban) 
  • It’s not too similar to any other existing unrelated word
  • It’s easy to transform into other derived words (such as the verb “to veganise”, the nouns “veganism”, “veganisation”, “veganhood”, and “vaganist”, or the new adjectives “veganic” and “veganish”)
  • It’s very easy to use to create good-looking idiosyncratic branding, especially in social media, such as “The Cranky Vegan”, “Revel Vegan Life”, “The Grumpy Vegan”, “Dirty Vegan”, “Slutty Vegan”, “Veganuary”, “Bite Size Vegan”, “Mic the Vegan”, Vegan FTA, etc.
  • It’s historically (and phonetically) connected with the words “vegetarian” and “vegetable” that everyone knows (the word “vegetarian” comes from the Latin vegetare which comes from vegetus, meaning vegetation, and the word “vegetable” comes from the late Middle English meaning “growing as a plant”). 
  • It’s not a new word, it has been used for almost a century and can be found in most dictionaries.
  • Veganism, the philosophy associated with the word, has had an official definition unchanged for 36 years.
  • Most people in the Western world have come across this word before
  • It has already been legally defined in some jurisdictions.
  • Several international product accreditation schemes use the term (such as the Vegan Society label, Certified Vegan, or the BeVeg certification), and they are quite consistent with one another 

Which other term for something or someone who avoids all animal products and exploitation is so pleasing, versatile, user-friendly, organically created and helpfully concise? The term “vegan” it’s a jewel of a word that sooner or later someone would have discovered as it shines above all the alternatives ever conceived. I really like it. 

Is “Plant-Based” Synonymous with “Vegan”?

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In modern times, a new word has appeared that is competing with the word “vegan”, but which has now taken a different meaning too. I have no idea who invented the adjective “plant-based” to be synonymous with the word “vegan” as an adjective, but you would find it these days in many restaurants, menus, and food labels intended to mean the same thing — I say “intended” because vegans who read it may interpret it differently.

Some of those who use it instead of “vegan” may do it because they might have a problem with the philosophy of veganism, and they do not want the product they are describing to be associated with it. These may be people who may not want to eat animal products but they don’t have any problem with animals being exploited (and they may even think people against all animal exploitation are some kind of undesirable radical woke people they would hate to be confused with). 

Other people using it may sympathise with vegans, but they may not be sure if a product is suitable for them, so they lazily label it as plant-based to simply state that it does not contain animal products in it. Others may be actual vegans who either feel insecure with their philosophy or are still “in the closet”, and who do not want to make any philosophical statement with the labels they use in case this draws negative prejudices. Finally, others using it could be vegans trying to build the vegan world but who feel that this has to be done, somehow, surreptitiously and not openly, as they may believe non-vegans are put off by veganism, so they think is better to hide under another term.

Regardless of how any of these types of people use the word plant-based, the problem is that the term does not have an official definition (there is no “plant-based” certification either), so it may be interpreted as something different depending on who you ask. 

I don’t like this term precisely because of its ambiguity. I find it incomplete because those who eat a vegan diet don’t only eat plants, but they also eat fungi (mushrooms), algae (seaweed) and bacteria (probiotics), which are neither animals nor plants, and it is confusingly used for products that may contain other non-plant-and- non-animal ingredients. Also, I found it unhelpful, as it is awkward to use and “based” doesn’t mean “exclusively” (for instance, you could argue that a typical burger meal from a classic chain is based on plants as most of its ingredients come from plants, such as bread, lettuce, cucumber, potatoes, tomatoes, etc.). I know of cases where animal products were in food labelled as plant-based, and the unacceptable excuse of those who mislabelled them was that they were just a small amount and most of the ingredients came from plants. 

The next problem is that something labelled as plant-based may not be suitable for vegans because animals may have been used in the manufacturing process, such as in acquiring ingredients (i.e. using monkeys to get coconuts or pigs to find truffles) or during processing (i.e. using fish bladders to purify wines or cows bones to filter beer), even if there are no animal ingredients left in the final product. And plant-based products may not be suitable for vegans either if the products, or any of their ingredients, have been tested on animals (such as some ingredients of the Impossible burger).

Therefore, a non-vegan may use “plant-based” as a synonym of “vegan” but a vegan would not think it means the same, making it very confusing to new vegans who may be asking “Is this vegan?” 

I also find it unfortunate that some animal protection or vegan organisations are beginning to use the term “plant-based” instead of vegan as I believe this does not help people to understand their vegan message. In the last ten years or so, I have noticed a shift toward this alternative word in some organisations, which may be doing it because they think reducing their “ask” increases their chances to achieve their goals, or due to pressure from some of their major donors who may not be that interested in the philosophy of veganism when applied beyond food. I think this is a tactical mistake as the term is ambiguous and confusing, and because it is devoid of moral and social connotations, it has become incoherent, shallow and relative — the opposite of the veganism movement and the term vegan which is cogent, profound and relevant. 

I understand that, when dealing with politicians during lobbying, it may seem a good idea to use the term plant-based instead of vegan if you are asking them to change policies, pass laws, or sign treaties. Considering that most politicians are avid carnists who may feel allergic to the idea of veganism, it may be tactically sound to distract them away from it by not using the loaded word. However, when that has been done, has it worked? Have politicians signed up in mass for plant-based policies because they do not believe they have anything to do with veganism (even when proposed by clearly vegan organisations)? Those who did show some support, would have not shown it if the word vegan had been used instead?  I am not sure.

The Competing ”Plant-Based” Identity

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The next problem is that the term “plant-based” is now beginning to be used as a noun referring to a human identity to mean a type of quasi-vegan person. Although some use it as a noun regarding identity with the inelegant word combo “plant-based people” (PBP) or “plant-based person”, others just use “plant-based” (as in “He is not vegan he is plant-based”). In essence, it is used to describe people who eat the diet that vegans eat but do not apply veganism in any other aspects of their lives (such as in clothes, cosmetics, entertainment, etc). Again, this is confusing, because people under this label may be eating the exact diet vegans eat (and if that is the only aspect of the philosophy they follow they can be better called “dietary vegans”), or may just be eating food that does not contain animal products but animals may have been used in their manufactory process, or in testing some of the ingredients. 

For me, the latter cannot be called vegans (as I would not call vegans the so-called beegans who consume honey, the veggans who consume eggs, the ostrovegans who consume bivalves, or the entovegans who consume insects). They fall better within the “flexitarian” framework (a flexitarian is someone who consumes mostly a plant-based diet but does not exclude any animal product), perhaps as more radical flexitarians who have begun to avoid animal ingredients in one aspect of their life, but only in one. 

However, I accept to call “dietary vegans” those who eat the same diet as vegans (no animal ingredients, no animal involvement in the production, and no animal testing) when we use the term “ethical vegan” to describe the proper vegans who follow the official definition of veganism to the full. I wrote an article titled “The vegan case against ‘plant-based’”, in which I explain why. In it, I wrote: 

“For me, the simple division of “vegans” between dietary and ethical does the job, as I prefer terms that unify rather than divide, and concepts that are more inclusive (with appropriate adjectives added for precision, as in the case of “abstinent’, “intersectional”, etc.).

I rather see dietary vegans joining us in an extended fertile vegan family than see them moving away to the sterile plant-based space. In there, they will be encouraged not to commit to any philosophy or campaign to help others in need, and just keep looking at themselves and their reflection in their portable devices.

I hope vegan organisations that, seduced by ideological pragmatism, are gradually replacing the word “vegan” for “plant-based”, would reconsider. Because although they may be attracting more “blood money” from carnist donors, they may be moving us away from our desired vegan world.”

In other words, if someone eats the same diet that vegans eat and no less (which covers a lot of daily decisions as food choices represent the majority of commercial choices people make in an average day), I rather see them as pre-vegans who just need a little bit more veganisation, than a completely different identity that has become a competing easier alternative to the vegan identity for those who feel a bit scare about it (and the Vegan Society sees it in the same way as it allows dietary vegans to vote in their AGMs). And why are they scared about it? Because many vegans, rather than showing them there is nothing to be scared about, hide under the term “plant-based” as if validating their fears. Besides, completely removing “plant-based” people from the vegan family also reduces the percentage of recorded vegans in a population, and we need higher percentages to gain political influence and begin developing policies that will eventually lead us to the vegan world.

The vegan community is still a small minority anywhere in the world, and if people considering joining us choose not to become vegan (not seeing themselves as pre-vegans on the way to reaching veganhood) and instead they comfortably stay for life in this new alternative identity that demands less effort and commitment, it will be difficult for the vegan community to grow. The “plant-based” word is stealing our future vegans, and we should get them back. Before we try to veganise carnists, we should put more effort into veganising Plant-Based People, as this not only should be easier but will help us keep the integrity of our movement. 

We Aim for the Vegan World, Not Just the Plant-Based World

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The veganism movement is a transformative socio-political movement that aims at the vegan world, not the plant-based world. In fact, we already live in the plant-based world, a world full of crops that was mainly plant-based but which carnists took over and imposed a patriarchal human supremacist animal-based ideology on top of it to gain control. Humanity flourished in a plant-based system where plants dominated but exploiting animals was not banned — and that was the mistake. As I wrote in my article “ The Ultimate Vegan Answer to the Remark “It’s the Circle of Life”, there has never been a human civilisation that was not based on plants (grasses such as wheat, barley, oats, rye, millet or corn, or of other staple plants such as beans, cassava, or squash), and there has not been any empire that was not forged on the back of plants (tea, coffee, cacao, nutmeg, pepper, cinnamon, or opium plants). 

A recent article titled “The World’s First Cities Were Powered By Peas, Not Meat” talks about recent research from modern-day Ukraine and Moldova that shows the inhabitants of the earliest human mega sites got most of their protein from peas (the towns of the ancient Trypillia culture were founded more than 6,000 years ago and contained around 15,000 residents, making them the largest known prehistoric settlements in the world). We still live in that plant-based world, but it has gone rogue and out of control, as we plant most of our crops to feed animals (which apart from being immoral is a waste of land and water), and then most people eat those — getting ill in the process. 

The vegan world of the future, on the other side, will be different from the plant-based world, as it will be immune to carnism domination because animal exploitation will not be tolerated at any level. It will be a world where veganic agriculture (without animal manures or pesticides) and precision fermentation (from bacteria, algae, and fungi) will replace traditional plant-based and animal agriculture. It’s a different world that humanity has never lived in but is achievable because is in alignment with our physiology and the ecology of the planet. It’s a different concept based on veganism (the exclusion of all forms of animal exploitation and oppression), not on plant-basedism (basing our society on plants). 

We should not be aiming for the plant-based world, which is the world of reducetarians and flexitarians, but the vegan world, which is the world of true vegans. We don’t want a commercially driven patriarchal white supremacist colonial plant-based world, but a truly revolutionary egalitarian anti-oppression non-speciesist vegan world where animal exploitation has been completely abolished. 

Other than to describe celebrities who many people assume are vegan but they may not be, or to describe food products which despite not containing animal ingredients are not suitable for vegans, I don’t think the ugly term “plant-based” is very helpful. Using it as a synonym of “vegan” for something that is truly vegan (like a food item or a meal), or someone who is an ethical vegan, feels like an attack on the word “vegan” by accepting that there is something wrong with it, and by extension an attack at the philosophy of veganism and its social movement — seeing it as TOO radical or TOO fringe to be acceptable in mainstream society. It feels defeatist and demoralising, as if we have already given up on trying to build the vegan world. This is why I do not like the term, and I am immediately put off by any organisation, company, or eatery that uses it when they could have used “vegan.”

The Other Competitors of the Word “Vegan”

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In addition to the term “plant-based” which has been used to water down both the philosophy and the social movement of veganism, other words have been proposed for the opposite reasons. Some vegans, in particular animal rights vegans who have not realised that the veganism movement and the animal rights movement overlap very closely but are not identical, may feel that veganism is not strong enough, and it has watered down the animal rights movement perhaps deviating it to other movements (such as the environmental movement or other social justice movements). These people often complain about the official definition of veganism as it contains the clause “as far as possible and practicable”, claiming that it opens the door to unwanted behaviours and makes the definition not strict enough. Because of this, they suggest other terms instead of “vegan” should be used to describe their identity, such as “anti-speciesist”, “anti-oppression”, “anti-animal-abuse”, “cruelty-freeist”, or “animal-liberationist”. 

Some vegans do not use the term vegan anymore, and, possibly because they had big arguments with other vegans, have gone as far as spending most of their time and energy criticising other vegans (I call them “anti-vegan vegans”) but most of those animal rights people who are questioning the use of the term “vegan” they do it for understandable legitimate concerns. For instance, not long ago I found this post on LinkedIn

“Are vegans making a huge mistake? Is it time to rethink our message and phase out the word ‘vegan’? I think it is. When we’re talking about animal rights. We are constantly explaining that it’s not a diet. Every discussion seems to be about what people think of vegans. While we’re desperately trying to speak up for the victims of violence, every discussion devolves into “Here’s my opinion about vegans”. And animals are forgotten once again. I can’t tell you how many times I have been mistaken for gluten-free. Gluten-free is not a justice movement! “Vegans should live and let live.” This completely misses the fact that we are trying to do exactly that. I usually love irony, but not this time. “Vegans are self-satisfied.” This one gobsmacked me. If she only knew. Veganism is not about vegans. It’s about justice for innocent animals and a commitment to doing the right thing. What if we said, “against animal abuse”? Or something similar. Would our message become clearer? Would this show them that we are speaking up for the innocent victims of violence? Would they understand that we would do the same for them, if they were the victims? Of course, when ordering food or shopping for shoes, the word “vegan” would still be used. But maybe it’s holding us back as activists. Maybe in the minds of non-vegans, all kinds of assumptions come up when they hear the v-word. And a wall goes up that closes their ears to our message. Messaging matters and word choice is essential.”

As a response, I posted the following comment:

“I am a fan of the word vegan as it is the perfect adjective for the concept of veganism. It is short and easy to translate and pronounce in most languages (as opposed to plant-based). And I love the concept of veganism as it is well-defined and has a lot of history. Those who react to the term vegan as you describe would equally react to whatever alternative name you suggest, but the difference is that it may take decades for the general public to begin to know what the new term means, effectively eliminating us from the map until then, and pushing us back for decades. Better stick to what works, and there is no doubt that more people know about the word vegan every day, and every time they misunderstand it thinking that it is just a diet it’s an opportunity to correct them (better than if they just ignore us if they don’t have a clue who we are because a new name nobody uses is chosen instead). Veganism, vegan, veganising, veganic…they are all perfect words for me. I am a fan, and my only issue about it is that it is not used often enough by vegans because they buy the narratives of the carnists instead of using our own.”

The person who posted the original post replied, “Excellent point. The word has been around for a long time. Maybe it just needs a brand strategy! An unapologetic one, of course.”

Another person commented the following about my comment: “That’s a really good point -it suddenly occurs to me that there is a squeamishness around using the word and that I’ve internalised that shame. But the solution could be to embrace rather than shy away from the word. So consider the N-word or Q-word both were terms of abuse but now are matters of pride. So let’s embrace VWA Vegans with attitude. Vegan Joy, Vegan Pride!”

I get it. It is demoralising when vegans see other people who call themselves vegans but support horse riding, keeping “exotic pets”, visiting zoos for leisure, or wearing wool. But the solution is surely veganising these people, not leaving them alone and putting all our attention to doing outreach to carnists who are more difficult to veganise because, in addition to doing all this, they contribute much more to animal exploitation in other areas. We should not blame the vegan philosophy or the word “vegan” for their existence. These people are not following the official definition of veganism, as neither are dietary vegans, and this is why we do not call them ethical vegans (another way to say proper vegans). But it’s not veganism’s fault that they do that. If we just create another completely different word for us, would this make them change? Of course not. Unless we try to veganise them, they will keep themselves away from veganism and the new word if they continue to willingly contribute to animal exploitation. And as far as the vegaphobes and vegan sceptics are concerned, their hate and ignorance will still be directed to us whatever we choose to call ourselves. 

The solution is not to create a new word, so we have an even smaller, less known, more misunderstood, more discriminated against, and less influential “tribe” to keep us still further away from mainstream culture in a more powerless position to stop animal exploitation. The solution is to veganise them and everyone else, to bring them into the vegan community so they change their attitudes and behaviours and become ethical vegans like us. The solution is not to hide away from veganism and its symbols but to defend them openly and convincingly. The solution is not to see the ‘vegan’ word as a cursed word but as a magical word, which is loaded with significance, power, gravitas, and transcendence.   

If vegans don’t defend the word ‘vegan’ and the philosophy it so brilliantly represents, who will? There have been vegans for millennia but only when the vegan philosophy started to crystallise under the shine of this simple elegant word that vegans began to organise themselves in a global transformative socio-political movement that has the chance to save the world, and all its inhabitants. No other alternative word before or after has had this effect. 

I am a vegan defender, and proud of it.

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’.