COVID-19 Vaccines: My Message To Vegans

Vaccines are an exception I can live with. Please hear me out.

Chana Davis, PhD
6 min readJul 23, 2021
Photo by Ivan Diaz on Unsplash

A friend recently asked me to speak with his vegan daughter about her vaccine hesitancy. He knew I was a COVID vaccine advocate, and hoped that she would relate to me as a fellow vegan and respect my opinion as a scientist (PhD genetics).

Over the next few days, my exchange with this vaccine-hesitant young woman helped me clarify my personal vegan philosophy, and articulate the facts behind my decision.

While I can’t tell you what to do, I hope to shed light on why vaccines are an exception I can live with. Pun intended.

Are COVID-19 vaccines vegan?

Whether or not COVID-19 vaccines are vegan depends on how you define veganism. If you define veganism as zero use of animals, or animal products, they are not vegan. If you define veganism as philosophy that excludes animal exploitation “as far as possible and practical”, like the Vegan Society, then the answer is fuzzier.

“Veganism is a philosophy and way of living which seeks to exclude — as far as is possible and practicable — all forms of exploitation of, and cruelty to, animals for food, clothing or any other purpose” — Vegan Society



Chana Davis, PhD

Scientist (PhD Genetics @Stanford) * Mother * Passionate about science-based healthy choices * Lifelong learner * Founder: Fueled by Science