Vegans argue that animal farming is not only cruel but also bad for the environment. World Vegan Day, on 1 November, puts the focus on the vegan way of life.

Do the preparation task first. Then read the article and do the exercises.

‘All life deserves respect, dignity and compassion. All life.’ – Anthony Douglas Williams

What is veganism and what do vegans do?

Vegans try to live, as much as possible, in a way that avoids exploiting and being cruel to animals. This means following a plant-based diet. Vegans do not eat animals or animal-based products like meat, fish, seafood, eggs, honey and dairy products such as cheese. For many vegans, living a committed vegan lifestyle means not wearing clothes made from animal skins and avoiding any products which have been tested on animals.

How are vegans different from vegetarians?

Vegetarians don’t eat meat or fish but they can eat eggs, honey and dairy products, but vegans don’t eat any animal-based food products. Vegans argue that suffering is caused in the production of these foods, for example they say that, on some dairy farms, male calves are killed because they are too expensive to keep, and on some farms, cows are killed when they get older and produce less milk. Similarly, on some egg farms, male chicks are killed because they do not produce eggs. As for honey, vegans say that bees make honey for bees, not for humans, and that bees’ health can suffer when humans take the honey from them. Vegans believe that the products they use and consume should be free from not just cruelty but any exploitation of animals.

When did veganism start?

The Vegan Society was founded in 1944, but there is evidence of people deciding not to consume animal products over 2,000 years ago. The sixth-century BC Greek mathematician and philosopher Pythagoras was in favour of kindness to all species, and his diet could be described as vegetarian. There was a tradition of vegetarianism in the Indus Valley, Babylonian and ancient Egyptian civilisations even earlier. The Vegan Society points out that in 1806, the famous romantic poet Percy Bysshe Shelley was one of the first people to publicly object to eating eggs and dairy products on moral grounds.

Why do many people decide to become vegan?

For many people, the main reason for going vegan is probably that they believe that animals and all other sentient beings should have the right to life and freedom. However, there are other reasons. Vegans argue that the production of meat and other animal products is very bad for the environment. They point out that a huge quantity of water is needed to grow grain to feed animals in the meat industry. The enormous amount of grain which the meat industry needs often leads to forests being cut down and habitats being lost. In contrast, much lower quantities of grain and water are needed to sustain a vegan diet. In addition, many vegans say that all the nutrients our bodies need are contained in a carefully planned vegan diet and that this type of diet helps prevent some diseases.

What is World Vegan Day?

On 1 November every year, vegans all over the world celebrate their way of life. There are workshops, exhibitions and public debates on World Vegan Day, and it is a wonderful opportunity for anybody thinking of becoming a vegan to learn more about the subject.




Language level

Upper intermediate: B2


I am interested in enviromental issues. I am a supporter of caring our common house, the planet. But in my opinion, vegarism is a bit excessive. It is against using things that comes from animals wich we need and use rightfully.

I won't becoming a vegan.I thing Vegan is not fit modern society and meal industry. It is impossible to avoid all of meal product. Some soup made by meal .Human is not vegetarian. In BC Human hunt a lot of animal to eat .Human life related hunting.but on other hand production of meal is exploiting and cruel .In fact I don't see meal production factory . some point in this article I agree especially don't ware cloths that from animal. some famous artist and actor ,actress ware cloths that made by animals. It is lavish but It is unnecessary for our life.

I never thought of being vegan. I respect vegan, but it's not my life philosophy. nature and human beings are in need of one and should benefit from each other.

I dont want to be a vegan because these people avoid those necessary foods which are healthy and energetic such as milk and honey etc..and sometime these foods are a type of cure for the people who use high dose medicine,honey is very helpful on getting rid of chest i wil say i am not a vegan but a vegetarian.

I think what people like to eat mainly depends on the physical attributes of their body, and our culture has influence on our dietary habit too. Luxury lifestyle may be a fashion, it became part of our culture today.

So I recommend everyone should listen to your body by nature, and keep simple life to reduce waste as much as possible.

By the way, although I'm not a vegan, or even not a vegetarian, I do like eat vegetables, however I like to taste meat either. By coincidence, my birthday is on 1,Nov.

Good evening,
Where could I see the answer to my comment????

Good evening,
Where could I see the answer to my comment????

Hi concha62,

Which comment are you expecting an answer to? The only other comment of yours that I can see on this page is below and doesn't seem to ask a question. If we've missed a question of yours, could you please add a link to the comment? The small word 'permalink' in the top right corner of each comment is a link to each individual comment. If we had that from you, it would help us find the comment you are talking about.

All the best,
The LearnEnglish Team

I'm vegetarian since eight years,I became vegetarian becouse of the animals.
Wenn I ate some meat and I thought an the animals I was very sad.

Vegetarian and Vegan don't require the same Rules . Vegan is really drastic. I am vegetarian too, it's to say, I never eat animal flesh but I eat eggs, Honey and milk sometimes.The Vegan musn't eat none of these foods. They only can drink non dairy milk but neither milk nor milk products