Veganism (also strict or pure vegetarianism) is a philosophy and lifestyle that seeks to exclude the use of animals for food, clothing, or any other purpose. Vegans do not use or consume animal products of any kind. The most popular reasons for becoming a vegan are concerns for animal rights, the environment, or human health, and spiritual or religious concerns.
The word vegan was originally derived from "vegetarian in 1944 when Elsie Shrigley and Donald Watson, frustrated that the term "vegetarianism" had come to include the eating of diary products, founded the UK Vegan Society.
They combined the first three and last two letters of vegetarian to form "vegan" ,which they saw as "the beginning and end of vegetarian".
The British Vegan Society defines veganism in this way:
The word "veganism" denotes a philosophy and way of living which seeks to exclude - as far as is possible and practical - all forms of exploitation of, and cruelty to, animals for food, clothing or any other purpose; and by extension, promotes the development and use of animal-free alternatives for the environment in dietary terms it denotes the practice of dispensing with all products derived wholly or partly from animals.