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The Debate on Thrifting Non-Vegan Items

by | January 12, 2019

There is a lot of controversy surrounding whether thrifting non-vegan items is right or not. Some say that it’s not acceptable because a true vegan shouldn’t own a leather belt in the first place, no matter where it came from. Others say that it’s not a problem since they are giving life to what would’ve been an otherwise forgotten item that might as well just end up in a landfill. Many new vegans are on the fence when it comes to where they stand on certain issues. Here to help, I have both sides of the controversy.

thrifting non vegan items

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Pro-Thrifting Non-Vegan Items

I once knew a vegan who thrifted a pair of non-vegan Dr. Martens from a local thrift shop in our town and her reasoning came from a great place. Her reasoning was that she wanted to do right by the animal that was unfortunately killed for the product by using the product until it was no longer usable. Many items in thrift shops never end up being sold and eventually will get thrown into the garbage. By thrifting, you are not giving money to the big corporation that the item originally came from, so there is an open debate on whether or not this is a vegan-friendly choice. Another pro-thrifting argument is more environmentally based because you are recycling previously used products, rather than buying them new from the store which contributes to the use of single-use plastic packaging, mass-consumerism, and potential wastefulness.

Anti-Thrifting Non-Vegan Items

An argument against thrifting non-vegan items is obviously the fact that it is not a part of following a completely vegan lifestyle. Some vegans are not comfortable owning a leather or wool item, even if it was thrifted because it is not something that aligns with their moral beliefs. Personally, I don’t think I would be okay with owning a leather purse for example, even if I got it secondhand, because the history of said item would haunt me. Not to mention that capitalistically, you are still monetarily contributing to the thrift shop which makes a profit off of the vegan item, possibly putting that item into demand.

How do you feel about thrifting non-vegan items? Let me know in the comments below.

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Gabriella Anaya

News Editor | Limoges, France | Gabriellaanaya@raisevegan.com

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