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What Brand of Veggie are you?
By Veggie Tom
“I’m a vegetarian, but I eat chicken and sausages. Oh, and bacon. And turkey at Christmas, obviously.”
I was working in a small newspaper office when someone told me that. In my three decades of meat evasion, she ranks as the least vegetarian vegetarian I’ve ever met.
We do come in many flavours, though. I’ve seen fish-lovers and gelatine-apologists tear strips off each other in equal states of disgust at the other’s apparent moral hypocrisy. Luckily it rarely gets violent. They are vegetarians, after all. And really, there’s not much point being sniffy about it. There are odd bits of animal buried in so many minor ingredients and E numbers that everyone eats some eventually – and many carry on, Braveheart-style, after they find out.
“You may take our jelly, but you’ll never take our Merlot!”
But while many of us wear our own personally customised variant of the veggie badge, someone still has to make the badges. So there are a few broad categories.
Lacto ovo vegetarian - this is the classic one. Stuff that’s been inside an animal is in (eggs and milk products) but stuff made from an animal is out, including fish.
Lacto vegetarian - as above, minus the eggs. Eggs are, after all, potential chickens. That’s probably why they’re so delicious.
Pescatarian - like the lacto ovo, but partial to cod. The pescatarian adds fish and seafood to the lacto ovo vegetarian diet.
Vegan - the ones who eat nothing that’s had anything to do with animals. No meat, fish, eggs or dairy, and some avoid honey too.
Pollo vegetarian - nobody ever gets called this, but it’s a real term for a lacto ovo vegetarian with a KFC habit. However, most agree that eating chicken stretches the definition a bit.
Those are the big ones. We’ll skip over fruitarians and people on raw food diets for now, as you don’t see many of them in the wild. As for the chicken, sausage, bacon and turkey vegetarian from the newspaper office, there’s a term for that too. Picky.
Unless you’re a lesser-spotted pollo vegetarian, you’ll be avoiding chicken nuggets. Bird’s Eye has a replacement for you, in the shape of its Vegetable Nuggets, which wrap sweetcorn, peas, carrots, potato and flour in a breadcrumb coating. Veggies avoiding egg will need to give them a miss, but what about the rest of us?
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Birds Eye Vegetable Nuggets