You're Not Vegan! (Full Documentary)


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Read More: documentary, donald watson, history, society, vegan, veganism, video

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Donald Watson invented veganism.

Six years later he was driven out of the Vegan Society he founded -- for not being vegan enough.

Today we bring you a fascinating documentary about the scandalous early history of veganism, and how its creator was driven out of the Vegan Society he founded -- and the lessons today's vegans can draw from this.

The UK Vegan Society has gone to lengths to sanitize its history and attempt to conceal the beginnings of veganism. Now that the early newsletters from the beginnings of veganism have been put online, it is no longer possible for them to lie and distort. You can read for yourself what happened, in the words of the people who were there.

Watch now (57 mins.):

To read the full true history of the creation of veganism, see:


6 Comments | Leave a comment


I'm really tired of the words "vegan" and "vegetarian". And I don't think either of these terms are helpful for anyone attempting to adopt a healthy, plant-based diet. Because I think they only promote division, rather than inclusion.

To quote a line from Deepak Chopra, from the "Seven Spiritual Laws For Success", where he was making a distinction between the ego and the spirit, he said, "The ego's wounded. It lives in fear. It's always asking, What's in it for me? What's in it for me? The spirit, on the other hand, is always asking, How can I help?"

I'm not a big Deepak Chopra fan, or anything. And I have no connection to him at all. But those few lines have been stuck in my head for quite some time now.


This video, though too long and somewhat repetitive, makes some very good points, and the history of Watson's Vegan Society is fascinating. There are some misconceptions in the video, however. (a) Donald Watson did NOT split veganism from animal rights. Though he did define veganism in terms of a plant-based diet, he was also profoundly concerned about human oppression of nonhuman animals, as is clear from this famous statement from the first Vegan News of 1944: "We can see quite plainly that our present civilisation is built on the exploitation of animals, just as past civilisations were built on the exploitation of slaves, and we believe the spiritual destiny of man is such that in time he will view with abhorrence the idea that men once fed on the products of animals’ bodies." (b) Though Donald Watson did not castigate people for lack of purity the way some vegans do today, or accuse them of not being vegan because their veganism extended onto as far as their diet, and his Vegan Society was primarily about promoting a plant-based diet, the founding of that Society was NOT motivated solely or primarily by health considerations. The motive was to help end human tyranny over animals. I find it useful to distinguish among different types of vegans...dietary vegans, ethical vegans, political vegans, and public relations vegans. (c) The speaker in the video gives no legitimate argument for his claim that veganism "at its core" is about health.


For a start, the Vegan Society was founded by a group of people (including two women), not by one man. Secondly, veganism was always about avoiding animal exploitation.


This is a great video by Jeff! I too find it annoying that the term "Vegan" has been hijacked by radicals with totalitarian beliefs. If U eat a plant based diet, the animals will not be raised and killed and the CAFOs will close. If the 10 billion animals raised for food production in the US alone were somehow "Liberated" they would die horrible deaths from starvation. Eat whole plant foods, and use the term "Vegan" proudly. No one should be ashamed to admit they eat a plant based diet. Most people are familiar with the term and it should not conjure up a radical animal rights image. Go Jeff!


VegNews interview with Donald Watson - 2005

'VN: What does veganism mean, from the person who defined it?
DW: Well it certainly started as a milk issue. That was a great issue, even more than eggs. We had to solve the milk problem. And then it soon took over to include the whole diet—then, of course later, all the animal products that people use. The biggest industry in the world is animal exploitation, which is the one thing that veganism is opposing. Not just farming, but everything else—medicines, vivisection, everything that comes from animals. I think man is biologically not a carnivore or a parasite. I’m thinking particularly of milk drinking. We’ve got more than 500 different mammals throughout the world and man is the only one who takes milk throughout life. It’s only man who is capable of [this kind of exploitation].

VN: Taking veganism beyond diet, tell me your thoughts about wearing fur or hunting and fishing.
DW: Well veganism covers, it leads, the whole of the animal-welfare movement.'

Are we meant to believe he isn't talking for himself here?
He states plainly that veganism covers more than diet but that it may have started in addressing dairy in the beginning because that was most expedient at the time.


Hi Benny -- You are not suggesting that Watson did not know the current preferred definition of veganism in 2005 when he was asked this question, are you? He obviously did.

I'm not sure what your point is. The video is about the history of the creation of the word and formation of the Vegan Society.

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