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Vegan Trademark

Plamil and the �Animal free� Vegan Trademark

The Change

In the 1980's Plamil was the first company to proudly label products with the Vegan Trademark. Then the Trademark was the historical flagship symbol for vegans, indicating a product had been made to widely achievable vegan standards �as far as is reasonably practicable�.

In the Vegan Society�s (VS) Autumn 2008 magazine, the VS published new �Animal Free� Trademark criteria, in which the use of �may contain milk/eggs/fish� statement would be allowed alongside the Trademark. This statement is used if a manufacturer is unable to ensure their product does not contain milk, eggs or fish.

The Reasoning

We, as do the hundreds of those that supported our �Save the Trademark� campaign, believe that the 2008 change has led the Trademark into an illogical and long-term dead end.

Our suggestion of a complete updating, review and overhaul of all aspects of the Trademark has gone unanswered. It is unfortunate that unlike other Trademarks, the VS has changed, and is able to change, the self certifying criteria for the Trademark with no formal points of reference.

In food production terms �as far as is reasonably practicable� is nowadays a more defined and achievable standard for any manufacturer to follow who wishes to do so. We consider, whatever misunderstanding of food production practices and labelling requirements the VS choose to publicise, in food terms the �small print� of the new criteria is contradictory with aims of �as far as is reasonably practicable�.

Sadly, the bottom line is that products with the �Animal free� Vegan Trademark may now contain anything from small to significant uncontrolled amounts of milk/eggs or fish. The new criteria also fail to adhere to Food Standards Agency�s LACORS guidelines, i.e. vegan food should not be contaminated.

Clearly the Trademark no longer means what most vegans think it means.

The Future

There are many positive aspects to promoting veganism and we continue to support and promote veganism in all its pluralistic forms. However it is with regret that we are no longer able to support the Trademark and we will be phasing out its use.

Of course consumers can be assured that our products are made to the highest vegan standards possible.

Labelling chocolate bars in our vegan factory

Labelling chocolate in our own vegan factory where no animal ingredients are ever used.