Veganism is a 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.
Veganism is thus a way of living which aims to exclude the exploitation of animals and cruelty against animals. This way of living is based on ethical grounds. It is not just about the horrible way in which people use animals, but also about the principle of using and killing animals for human benefit, while it is perfectly possible for people to live without the use of animal parts.
Vegans don’t use animal products or services. This means products that originate from the body of an animal or have been created by an animal. This definition shows that veganism is an endeavor and is limited to what is practically possible. This can differ per person depending on the personal situation and the options to buy vegan products and services. A vegan will always carefully consider how best to avoid the use of any animal, in every situation.
More than food
Vegans eat plant-based, but veganism is about more than not eating animals. A vegan also does not consume plant-based products which have been produced using animals. For example products that have been tested on animals, or have been produced with animal based additives, like wines clarified with gelatine or fish-glue. Vegans of course also don’t eat meat, fish, dairy, eggs, honey, gelatine, animal E numbers and other products containing ingredients from animals.
Vegans implement this principle throughout their whole life. Vegans don’t buy clothing made from animals like fur, leather, wool, down, felt, feathers, silk. Vegans make sure that personal care products do not contain animal ingredients or have been tested on animals. They also reject using animals for entertainment. Vegans do not visit zoos and do not ride animals. Animals should not be kept, unless this is in the interest of the animal, for example the (temporary) care of animals needing medical assistance or rescue animals.
In summary: Vegans do not use products or services in which animals have been used. Fortunately there are many alternatives and they are continually increasing!