Veganism as a whole is considered as something worthless or meaningless... It is believed we, the vegans, deny ourselves the good things in life for a worthless cause; that we have a lower quality of life because we have less choice of the things in the world.
For me, the reason for that lies in only one place - consumerism. After all, aren’t we all driven by this idea to constantly buy, to have, to take: to consume… We, the vegans, partially avoid this societal role and if we don’t take an active part, could we actually be a valuable part of society? Is it possible?
That may have been true many years ago when the best vegan option really was raw carrots, meat replacements looked and tasted like cardboard, and the only sustainable clothing out there was in the most lifeless of colours… Today however, it seems that things have changed… at least a little bit.
We do all consume, that’s a fact, and we’re constantly bombarded by small and big brands alike and their products. There are some companies, which we automatically associate with quality and image - the companies we would save for and show off to anyone who would listen (even if they wouldn’t). Companies that know their target market are looking for quality and would in no way offer the wrong product because they risk ruining their image. Companies like Gucci, Burberry, Dr. Martens, Magnum, Guinness, Bayleys, Tesla, BMW…
However, every single one of those companies offers a vegan alternative of their products (see for yourselves if you follow the hyperlinks!). If veganism really is of low quality, why would industry leaders like them be brave enough to undertake such a change? Yes, the demand exists, but surely the logic dictates a “low quality” vegan products would ruin their image and lose their loyal clients.
Yes, I wasn’t there for the board meeting of FOR and AGAINST vegan products, to know exactly what was on their mind. However, I probably have enough life experience to know how consumerism is run. For those companies the image is EVERYTHING and yet they still believed that introducing vegan products wouldn’t harm it.
Maybe veganism isn’t of low quality after all and maybe veganism is yet another way to produce quality, create a great image and valuable customer loyalty. Maybe veganism is a way for consumerism to meet the idea of sustainability, to keep making money while also being a bit more responsible for the impact they make.
There’s no argument that some vegan (and non-vegan) products can be of low quality, but I don’t think I am missing out on life when the big companies also want to be part of my day-to-day. What do you think?