How to be vegan

A guide to living a vegan life.

So you are keen to try veganism ~ that’s great! Now the question for most is how? Some people chose to go vegan overnight and this works for them, others transition over a period of time.

Resources for going vegan

Becoming vegan can seem like a big change to begin with. You may feel like there are just too many foods you need to give up – this is simply not true! You will soon discover all kinds of vegan treats and recipes to substitute for your usual favourites, and realise that a vegan version can be made of most of them.

Today, compared with say 10 (or even 5) years ago, there is a much greater range of vegan products readily available in your local supermarket. There are vegan versions of sausages and burgers, cheese, milk, ice cream, chocolate and yoghurt, just to name a few. More new products come out all the time, so keep checking your local stores.

To help you change to a vegan lifestyle we have compiled a selection of resources and links below.


Get ready for the 21 day easy vegan challenge, designed to help you on a pathway to a kinder, healthier and more planet-friendly lifestyle.  Receive daily support emails with meal ideas, recipes, tips, nutritional info, a list of what to shop for and more.

We will show you convenient substitutes so you can continue enjoying the foods you love, plus answer all your burning questions about protein and what you’ll do when you eat out.

And for some inspiration, we will introduce you to some Kiwi champs from all walks of life, who have chosen to be vegan too!

JOIN IN – our dedicated Facebook group for live support from vegan mentors and dieticians.

Choose our Pasifika challenge to receive delicious vegan dishes from everyday, Pasifika vegans.  You can adapt them and add your own twist to make them your own.  Have fun with the shopping list and receive tips tailored to you.

Check out some meal suggestions and recipes from the Try Vegan Challenge


Keep what you have until its worn out, or donate to charity shops if you feel you want to get rid of leather shoes and bags, wool jumpers, down jackets etc.
As you buy new items you can start to become aware of what things are made of. Shoes you can often find in shoe shops that are non leather (check for the diamond symbol only, not animal skin symbol) or online vegan shoe stores, often more expensive but better quality. See our shoes section under shopping.

Household products/toiletries

Use up what you have at home and gradually change the brands you buy to vegan options as they need replacing. Household items such as washing up liquid, washing powder, cleaning sprays etc. can be tested on animals and or contain animal ingredients, and the same goes for shampoo, shower gel, toothpaste etc. Check the labels, products will state if they are not tested on animals, and sometimes if they are vegan or contain no animal ingredients (if nothing is stated then assume they test on animals). SAFE have a cruelty free shopper guide which will help identify brands to buy. Options are available at your local supermarket so no need to go looking in any specialist shops or online.


Here are some of the questions/statements you are likely encounter when you become vegan: from the sensible, to the just plain silly, and how you can respond.

Documentaries and Books