Vegan Butcher Afraid of Repercussions, Kept His Veganism a Secret
Turned butcher at just 16, a South Lanarkshire man silently carried what he should have proudly announced: being vegan. After being in the meat industry for 15 years, the butcher found himself concealing a secret. But why should something like abstaining from killing be practiced under a veil? The transgressing society still stigmatizes even the most personal of choices, preventing channelization of individual confidence and moreover, barring free livelihood.
Butcher for 15 Years became Vegan Secretly
Brian Kavanagh took to knives when he was just 16. It was his first job, but reportedly not something he genuinely wished for. He took a butcher’s job just to keep his dad quiet. He has been a butcher for 15-year, resulting in a large portion of his adult life spent cutting, shaping and chopping meat, but his heart followed a different path.
Standing behind the counters of Morrison’s supermarket, Brian, aged 33, silently went vegan without his colleagues knowledge because he feared all he would have received jokes and intimidation. According to BBC, Kavanagh finally went vegan after he saw the animal welfare documentary, Earthlings. Prior to that, he considered going vegan when his wife, Rebeca, chose to go vegan. Now his entire family, including his two children, eat a plant-based diet.
Earthlings, directed by Shaun Monson is an award-winning documentary showcasing the horrific darkness that castes the innocent animal’s lives in factory farms.
Vegan Butcher: It may be late, but it’s for the best
Like countless people across the globe, Brian was one to go with his heart, despite his work in processing meat. Working at supermarket giant, Morrisons, Brian kept his lifestyle a secret:
“I kept it to myself. I didn’t tell anyone because I was worried about them making jokes. Before I just looked at it as a piece of meat going on a dinner plate but then you see it as an animal and not just a steak.
I was a bit depressed, it just didn’t feel good, so I had to leave.”
Every individual has a capacity for compassion, meat-eaters and vegans alike. Our food habits don’t necessarily have a connection to our extent of compassion because most of the time, the realities of our foods are behind closed doors, hidden from purview. But many people, like Brian, make the compassionate connection to animals they previously considered food after watching documentaries that reveal those horrific realities.
Brian made the connection three years ago, but stigmas and fear of social repercussions caused him to live his life of compassion in secret. After going vegan, he said life is much easier because he and his families can share every meal together, whereas before only his wife followed a plant-based diet.
A Vegan Butcher
Brian, who is now 36, gave his notice of resignation to Morrisons and has been hired at Glasgow’s Sgaia’s Vegan Meats, where he makes vegan meat. The company supplies many restaurants with vegan foods, like the pop-up Durty Vegan Burger Club. Defying his own worries that his background might hinder Sgaia’s interest in hiring him, Brian, who calls himself a vegan butcher mentioned,
“(…) they were really excited about it and wanted me just as much as I wanted to work there.”
Brian even helped the company launch one of the most popular products, vegan Lorne sausage, because, “Making sausages was a big part of being a butcher,” he said to BBC. Now after changing his lifestyle, he says he feels much healthier. Have you heard similar stories of transitions? Did you face social stigmas when you went vegan? Let us know in the comments below.
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