Vegan Translations

Useful phrases for vegans in other languages

VeganTranslations solves a simple need: to express your dietary needs as a vegan to local restaurants when you are travelling. We have 10 languages to start and need help to expand our phrase selection!
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The problem I've faced by such simple translations spending multiple years living in Asia, is that "veganism" and even "dairy" are abstractions (abstractions in food take the form of supersets, subsets, intersections and exclusions), whereas the people working in restaurants, especially outside the developed world, have not been trained to think abstractly. Depending on the establishment, employees may not have completed high school, some no formal education, and it is quite a distinction to come back after hours and see them sleeping on the floor of the restaurant or tent-stall as their home. For many restaurant workers, asking for modifications to a meal is like blasphemy to a tradition - a ridiculous notion - you might as well be asking them to make a whole new dish! Especially when customers in these regions do not think in terms of nutrition, but in terms of traditional meals that have stayed the same for centuries - that is why restaurants in these areas still advertise meal names - Babi Guling, Nasi Goreng, Nasi Lemak! - and not slogans or principles. Worse, is that many consider broths made with animal products, but had the meat removed, still suitable for vegans. This is because again, animal product is an abstraction, not an ingredient on their instruction set for a traditional meal their families have prepared for centuries. It takes an ability to wrestle with abstractions to consider cheese an animal product, for most, cheese is just an ingredient. And heaven forbid those that consider fish to be a vegetable. Furthermore, why would anyone not want to eat meat or dairy? They are signs of wealth and health, if you can afford them, you should be eating them. Veganism is still a privilege for those who have the luxury of choice of their nutrition, which restaurant employees rarely have. Without this philosophical contemplation of dietary requirements (be it political, religious, or allergy), things like this arise: meals such as biryani will be cooked with paneer inside a huge pot, and served throughout the day, so when someone asks no cheese, they will consider it odd (that person must just not like paneer for a strange reason) and just pick out the paneer they can see, and job done. As such, I came up with the below note that I share with my fellow digital nomads, which has evolved through such aforementioned tediums with increasing success. Ultimately however, a picture/sign version may be best for in-person interactions. --- 2019 version for grab (food-delivery) orders: Vegan and gluten-free, otherwise please cancel the item. What does vegan and gluten mean? Gluten is an ingredient inside wheat and barley that makes some people sick, so NO gluten/wheat/barley, such as in sauces, flour, and thickeners. Gram flour is ok, as it is not wheat. Vegan means strict-vegetarian to avoid hurting animals, so only food from plants and minerals, which means nothing from animals, so NO dairy/milk/cream/butter/yoghurt/cheese/paneer/whey, NO egg/mayo/honey, NO shrimp/fish/oyster in sauces/pastes, NO offal/entrails/tripe/blood/ghee, NO meat/flesh/beef/chicken/seafood/fish/crab/shrimp/oyster. Coconut flesh/milk/cream is ok, as coconut is a plant. Cutlery and napkins not needed. --- 2018 international version: When running computer translations, beware of honey being translated to darling or love. "no dairy" was removed in favour of "no milk from cow" as it translates better. “vegan” translates to “vegetarian” in Hindi, hence why a qualifier for actual/real/strict is required. "I am a real vegan" seems to be the most accurate to cross-translate. Vegetarian would be suitable alone, however it became appropriated to mean no-red-meat. English I am a real vegan I eat only plants no animal derivatives that means no meat no broth from meat no oyster sauce no fish sauce no shrimp paste no egg no honey no milk from animal no cream from animal no butter from animal no yogurt from animal no mayonnaise no ghee only plants in mock meats coconut is ok, it is a plant Chinese Simplified 我是一个全素食者 我只吃植物 没有动物衍生物 这意味着 没有肉 没有肉的肉汤 没有蚝油 没有鱼酱 没有虾酱 没有蛋 没有蜂蜜 没有奶 没有奶油 奶牛没有黄油 没有牛奶的酸奶 没有蛋黄酱 没有酥油 只有植物在模拟肉类 椰子是好的,它是一种植物 Hindi मैं एक असली शाकाहारी हूँ मैं केवल पौधों को खा रहा हूं कोई पशु डेरिवेटिव नहीं इसका मतलब है कि कोई मांस नहीं मांस से कोई शोरबा नहीं कोई सीप सॉस नहीं कोई मछली सॉस नहीं कोई चिंराट पेस्ट नहीं कोई अंडा नहीं कोई शहद गाय से कोई दूध नहीं गाय से कोई क्रीम नहीं गाय से कोई मक्खन नहीं गाय से कोई दही नहीं कोई मेयोनेज़ नहीं कोई घी नहीं नकली मांस में केवल पौधों नारियल ठीक है, यह एक पौधा है Malay Saya seorang vegan Saya hanya makan tumbuhan tiada sebarang makanan berasal dari haiwan maksudnya tiada daging tiada sup dari daging tiada sos tiram tiada sos ikan tiada pes udang tiada telur tiada madu tiada susu haiwan tiada krim dari lembu tiada mentega dari lembu tiada yogurt dari lembu tiada mayonis tiada ghee (minyak sapi) hanya tumbuhan dalam daging tiruan kelapa itu ok, itu adalah tumbuhan Indonesian Saya benar-benar vegan Saya hanya makan tumbuhan tidak ada turunan binatang itu berarti tanpa daging tidak ada kaldu dari daging tidak ada saus tiram tidak ada saus ikan tidak ada pasta udang tidak ada telur tidak ada madu tidak ada susu dari sapi tidak ada krim dari sapi tidak ada mentega dari sapi tidak ada yogurt dari sapi tidak ada mayones tidak ada minyak sapi hanya tumbuhan di daging tiruan kelapa itu ok, itu adalah tumbuhan --- Antagonistic version for english speakers: Are your vegetarian options vegetarian? (that is plants only — nothing from animals, no dairy, no egg, no ghee, no honey, etc — suitable for vegans — cruelty free) or are your vegetarian options actually lacto-ovo-vegetarian? (harms, enslaves, and rapes animals for their produce such as their breast milk and eggs, but doesn't kill the animals for their flesh).
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During a recent trip to Thailand, a friend and I had trouble conveying our vegan dietary preferences. Veganism is not a global phenomenon, and the details of it are not always understood in every language. We came up with the idea to provide human translations of a few crucial phrases to convey these needs in a way that locals would understand. Our goal was to make something: - Free - Simple to use - Works well on a smartphone Current features include: - Supports 10 languages and counting - Audio of spoken phrases - Search nearby (0.5 mi radius) vegan restaurants directly on Happycow - Offline mode We would love your feedback and/or help with translations in different languages!
@stan_choi added translations in Polish :) Hope it will be useful
@nerdontour Thanks for your help!