When a child is born, it needs all the nourishment and care that parents can provide.
The best nourishment for a new born baby, without a doubt, is breast milk.
It contains all the nutrients that a baby needs and also helps build a solid base for their life ahead.
Whether a mother decides to breastfeed her child is her own choice but for parents who are vegan, the choice can be made harder by the question: Is Breast Milk Vegan?
What is Vegan and What’s Not
People who choose the vegan lifestyle shun everything that comes from animals.
Milk, cheese, eggs– everything is off limits. Similarly, they start to ponder whether breast milk is non-vegan as well because it also comes from an animal.
When you think about it, the answer is quite simple. Anything that comes from an animal with consent and without any external force is vegan.
As long as the animal is not forced to give something up and does so willingly, that would be vegetarian. And that is why human breast milk is also vegan, as the mother willingly decides to give something of her own body to her child.
Cow Milk vs. Breast Milk
If breast milk is vegan, then why isn’t the milk from a cow?
The reason is simple. A cow doesn’t allow you or permit you to take its milk. Just like a mother wouldn’t want someone to force her to give them their milk, a cow wouldn’t want someone to take its milk either.
A cow produces milk to feed to its own calf. A cow’s calves are forcibly taken away from it and then its milk is forcibly taken which makes it non-vegan.
Does That Make Banked Milk Non-Vegan?
Banked milk is that which is donated by women to be used by other parents.
Milk banks store this milk and it can be bought in order to feed a child in need.
It is a lifeline for the mothers who can’t breastfeed for some reason but still want their babies to have the best diet.
So if a woman is not directly feeding her milk to her child, how is banked milk vegan?
Veganism is a matter of compassion. The milk that is stored in these banks are of women who willingly donate it. They are not forced to produce it for someone neither are they unaware of its use.
That is what makes it vegan. If animals could talk, and if they told us they were happy to give their milk to us then that would be vegan as well.
Breast milk is the first and foremost choice for a child’s development. Many people would argue that it’s even the child’s right to be fed breast milk. So for parents who want the best for their new born and can’t seem to figure out whether breast milk is vegan or not, don’t worry about it.
As long as it’s by the mother’s will, it’s okay to feed your future vegan child her mother’s, or any willing woman’s, breast milk. In fact, it’s generally the absolute healthiest (totally vegan) choice for both mom and baby alike.