Vegetarian- To quote the vegetarian society a vegetarian is "Someone living on
a diet of grains, pulses, nuts, seeds, vegetables and fruits with or without the use
of dairy products and eggs. A vegetarian does not eat any
meat, poultry, game, fish, shellfish or slaughter by-products"
When looking on the Free Dictionary online the definition of a vegetarian is seen
as a person who does not eat or does not believe in eating meat, fish, fowl, or, in
some cases, any food derived from animals.
The Oxford dictionary claims a vegetarian to be a person who does not eat meat
or fish, and sometimes other animal products, especially for moral, religious, or
My own definition of a vegetarian would be that of someone who takes up their
right of not eating meat or any kind of meat due to many issues, mainly
concerned the protection of animals.
2% of the Britain's population are
vegetarians. This amount increases
every year as seen on the statistics. It
has risen by about 500 adults and
children each year since 2010. This is
because of the health risks and
alternative options being shown to
children at schools and people becoming
more aware of how the animals are killed
and cooked for the meat.
Each year a person eats 79.3 Kg’s of
meat. This is encouraging a lot of
animals to be killed. When looking at the
American consumption where animals
have no rights or protection, 31 animals
are eaten per person in a calendar year.
As people are becoming more
educated, the increase in numbers of
Here the piece of data shows clear understanding of who are vegetarians and where they are
located. This is American data however it shows how far the meat alternatives have come
through the years. A lot more children have started to eat healthier and with more knowledge
of what they are eating. With 3% children in America being vegetarian. Not as high as it
should be but clear improvement. Also the duration of being a vegetarian has started to make
a greater impression. It used to be a statement or short periods of time where people
protest, however with 57.1 % of people lasting on a vegetarian diet for over 10 years shows it
is a way of life.
This chart is from a slightly
earlier date but it shows us
how the population is starting
to understand what they eat at
an earlier age
From this we can see that
there are many types of
vegetarians and meat
alternative diets around that
are taken up by a younger
As seen here a huge 55%
were estimated to be
interested in vegetarian
meals out. This shows that
not all young adults eat so
called ‘Junk food’ and do
look into what they eat.
Saying this since 2008
when that data was
collected, companies such
as McDonalds have started
to offer a meat free meal as
well as more salads made.
The main reasons for being a vegetarian are:
Health concerns- Animal foods have a lot more fat then other foods. Animal produce also contains a larger amount of
agricultural chemicals in then plant foods, chemicals such as pesticides. Bacteria is also a concern when eating meat due to
the uncleanliness of the animals. You can also catch many diseases from the animals such as heart diseases that are
increasing each year with the consumption of meat.The preparation of meat is seen in another aspect to bacteria and the
unclean meat you are seen to be eating. After many meat issues in the media such as the horse meat scandal this has started
to put people off eating meat as they start to doubt the companies.
Environmental concerns- Conservation of fossil fuels and saving the forests (Destruction of habitats for animals can raise
livestock) The livestock sector is a key player in increasing water use, accounting for over 8 percent of global human water
use, mostly for the irrigation of feed crops. Also The livestock sector is a major player, responsible for 18 percent of
greenhouse gas emissions
Ethical concerns- People may see giving meat up only a small sacrifice to what is happening to animals. Ethical issues
concern animals being killed and an example of this is in news where Denmark an their ban on slaughtering animals, replacing
it with stunning the animal to death.
A dislike of meat- It may come down to the simple reason of not liking meat and preferring a vegetarian diet. All meat is
considered to have a healthier alternative.
Non-violent beliefs- Slaughter of the animals is seen as very violent. To Quote Ellen White the founder of the seventh day
Adventist church and vegetarian health reformer "Whatever affects the body has a corresponding effect on the mind and soul"
meaning that participating in a belief of killing animals is wrong would clear your conscience and not made to feel responsible.
Compassion for animals- Not wanting harm to come to the animals that are killed for the meat. This relates to the non violent
beliefs and here people think that animals should have more rights.
Personal finances- Being a vegetarian can have many benefits financially, such as having to spend less on healthcare. Also
the more obvious fact of having to pay less for meat.
Religion - Vegetarianism is strongly linked to a number of religions that originate in
ancient India (Hinduism, Jainism and Buddhism). In these religions vegetarianism is
mandatory. Hinduism’s encourages a vegetarian diet, though not all Hindus are
vegetarian. Hindus avoid beef as they consider the cow sacred. Vegetarianism is
expected practice among Jains, who hold that it is wrong to kill or harm any living
Siddhartha Gautama, the Buddha, was a Hindu who accepted many of Hinduism’s
core doctrines, such as karma. His life and teachings offered special insights into
how to address problems of human existence, and he explicitly taught
vegetarianism as a component of his general instruction to be mindful and
More on Ellen White, this religious side to vegetarianism is yet another reason why
people choose not to eat meat.
Muslims all over the world have opposed
Denmark’s move to ban the slaughter of
animals in an Islamic (halal) way and
called upon their governments to stop
importing Danish meat as long as the
Scandinavian country refuses to respect
their religious teachings.
The Muslim belief
being that many
sacred, however if
they are slaughtered
from the neck
straight away it is
accepted. This new
method of hurting
the animal more
from stunning is
going against all
beliefs. This shows why so many people turn
vegetarian. The way in which some
animals are killed can totally change
your views and ethical beliefs about
what you are eating. People start to
believe that if they eat the produce
they may be seen as agreeing with
the cruelty. Another reason for
vegetarianism can therefore be fear.
Fear of guilt.
Many companies have started meat free alternatives since the early 21st
century however ConAgra stands out for its ‘Light life’ foods that are
made and sold in supermarkets. This replaces meat and became very
popular within the vegetarian market and has eventually sold the brand
of food to another business (Brynwood Partners) Lightlife is seen as
another alternative such as Quorn.
Suma Wholefoods was founded in 1977 and only stock vegetarian food
to sell. The premises in which they work in is 100% meat free. They are
against meat because of it not being able to feed everyone across the
world. With 750 million people suffering from hunger, it is not possible to
feed everyone with animals and it is not right. However equality can be
achieved by giving everyone a plant based diet. The business cares a lot
about animal welfare and does not approve of any animal testing or
McDonalds as stated before have started to expand their audience to
those of vegetarians as well due to the increase in meat alternatives and
more healthy lifestyles. However recently the company has come out
and admitted that it only 2 to 3 percent of overall sales are from non
meat produce and salads. In 2012 McDonalds showed plans of opening
a vegetarian only restaurant in 2013. This was to open in India, due to
their Muslim beliefs over cows and the animal being sacred it was seen
to give an alternative to those many people populating the country.
A Typical Menu in India is 50% Vegetarian. McAloo Tikki burger (A spiced
potato-based filling) takes up 25% of the businesses sales over there. If
this is a success then the 2nd biggest food outlet in the world after
subway will plan to open 1300 stores.
Linda McCartney Foods is a British food brand specializing in vegetarian and vegan
food. The brand was created in 1991 by Linda McCartney (1941–1998), sold in 2000
to Heinz, and sold again in 2006 to the Hain Celestial Group, though the McCartney
family remains involved in its development
Quorn is the leading brand of mycoprotein food around. Quorn is produced as both a
cooking ingredient and a range of ready meals. Quorn as a retail product was first
produced in 1985 by Marlow Foods. Quorn is made from the soil mould Fusarium
venenatum strain PTA-2684 (previously misidentified as the parasitic mould
Fusarium graminearum). The fungus is grown in continually oxygenated water in
large, otherwise sterile fermentation tanks.
Non vegetarian products:
The products that cannot be consumed by vegetarians are:
Orange Juice- Surprisingly in many brands the drink contains Fish and lanolin oils. Lanolin being the natural oil coming from
sheep wool that is found in the vitamin D in the juice. Coca-Cola juices also contain Lanolin. This is on the border of vegetarian
and vegan because it is not actually harming animals to get the product, but many strong viewed people may believe any form
of animal should not be used in human meals or drinks.
Enhanced Bread- Like the orange juice, bread that is bought from the supermarket contains omega-3 that comes from the
amino acids in fish oil. This is the reason many vegetarians check the labels of food and drink products, not all brands contain
the same. This leads onto Bagels. They are believed to contain bird feathers. The enzyme L. Cysteine is used as a dough
conditioner in the process of making the bagels. The same enzyme can be found in garlic bread in some restaurants such as
On the link there is several compounds that need to be checked as they have some sort of meat featured in them. Such as for
example Albumen, this can be found In eggs, milk, muscles, blood, many vegetable tissues and fluids.
Other food that should not be eaten if you are a vegetarian are salad dressing that couldContain bacon fat. Tortillas- (Many
Mexicans use animal fat in the creation of them) Any form of gelatin in foods you should not eat, usually found in sweet
products such as gummy bears, marshmallows and jelly. Also another peculiar product that cannot be consumed as it is
associated with meat is that of Beer. It is partly made out of isinglass that is fish bladder. It is not always found but a
consideration. Geletin is also found in beer. Many beer producers do not reveal if they use animals in the making of their
produce, however the British brewery for cask ale contains animal products in the filtering process. However many beers have
declared themselves to be vegetarian friendly. Ones such as Samuel Smith and Anheuser-Busch.
There are some cheeses which are always made using animal rennet, for example, Parmesan. In order to be called
‘Parmesan’ this has to be produced according to traditional methods which use calf rennet. So this can also be on the border
line for vegans and vegetarians. Vegetarian cheeses are manufactured using rennet from either fungal/bacterial sources or
genetically modified micro-organisms
E Number Additive Name
•120 Cochineal, Carminic acid, Carmines Natural Red 4 - colouring
A colouring that makes many foods red. Found in alcoholic drinks, fruit pie fillings, jams, many sweets
and even cheeses. Cochineal is made from the female insect found on cacti called Dactylopius Coccus.
She is boiled alive or left to "cook" alive through sun exposure. Cochineal is the result of crushing scales
of the insect into a red powder.
153 Carbon Black, Vegetable Carbons - colouring
If the description on product packaging says "Vegetable Carbons", then it is most likely free of animal
derivatives. (but could be derived from GM crops!) But if the additive is described as "Carbon Black", It is
more likely to be derived from various parts of animals.
161g Canthaxanthin (Natural Orange Colour Xanthophylls) - colouring.
Be aware that although Canthaxanthin is usually derived from plant material, it can sometimes be made
from fish and invertebrates with hard shells.
Here are some of the E Numbers related to vegetarians and those which may not be seen as using
animals. The first one of E Number 120 is defiantly from an animal and one vegetarians should stay
away from. The second number of 153 is sometimes considered to be using animal related
compounds, the 161g is also possibly from animals however not a 100% as 120.