Prison Service Guidelines: Veganism
Veganism is not a religion but a philosophy, whereby the use of an animal for food, clothing or any other purpose is regarded as wholly unacceptable.
The majority of vegans reject entirely, anything which has its origins in the exploitation, suffering or death of any creature. An individual may lead a vegan lifestyle for one particular reason or for a combination of reasons, and this may result in some vegans being stricter than others in what they deem as acceptable and unacceptable. Vegan beliefs are followed by individuals within various faiths, to varying degrees, and by individuals of no faith.
Most vegans will not involve themselves directly, or indirectly, in anything whereby their lifestyle and beliefs are compromised or violated, either for themselves or for others. Throughout their lives, vegans will seek to sever all links with, and dependencies upon, the use or abuse of animals.
A vegan diet is based on fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, beans, pulses and cereals. The diet omits all animal products including meat, poultry, fish, sea creatures, invertebrates, eggs, animal milks, honey and royal jelly. Vegans should not be required to handle such foodstuffs. Food/drink containing or made with any of the above or their derivatives should not be served. The Vegan Society can provide helpful information on a range of issues including how nutrients are obtained from a vegan diet.
Human nutrient requirements, with the exception of vitamin B12, can be met by a diet composed entirely of plant foods, but to do so it must be carefully planned using a wide selection of foods. Fortified yeast extract is a good source of some of the B-vitamins, including vitamin B12 as is fortified soya milk.
Clothing and footwear must be from non-animal (eg plant or synthetic) sources. The wearing of all animal fibres, skins and materials including wool, silk, leather and suede will not be accepted by vegan prisoners.
Purchase of supplements and remedies
Herbal remedies, dietary, or food supplements of a vegetable or synthetic origin such as iodine (kelp tablets) may be requested through the prison shop.
Toiletries containing any animal derived ingredients and toiletries where either the product or its ingredients have been tested on animals, are totally unacceptable and are not permitted. Therefore, whenever toiletries suitable for vegans are required, establishments should make arrangements for such items to be stocked in the prison canteen or ordered in as necessary.
Vegans would not be expected to use inappropriate toiletries.
Vegans should not be asked to handle or use substances that have involved animal testing on the product or its ingredients.
Most vegan prisoners will not wish to be involved in any way in the care of animals on prison farms. Vegans usually choose not to engage in any sport, hobby, or trade that directly or indirectly, causes stress, distress, suffering, or death to any creature.
Vegans should not be expected to work in butchery or handle anything of animal origin or content.