Separate food preparation items? - VeggieBoards
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#1 Old 02-24-2016, 11:48 PM
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Question Separate food preparation items?

Hi all.

I'm a relatively new vegan (a few months and going strong) and I came across something the other day that I had no idea was a thing, and I'm hoping someone can shed some light on it for me.

I was entertaining a guest (non-vegan) the other day, and she was shocked to find out that I used the same pots, pans, knives, forks, chopping boards, etc, as my housemate who is non vegan.

I really don't see the issue with this. Everything is cleaned before use. It's not like I'm not crazy enough to take a knife that was used to cut raw chicken and prepare a salad with it without washing it. It was suggested to me that I'm supposed to get my own things for preparing food. This seems like a great big waste of resources to me when I have perfectly good items that I can already use.

Anyone have any input on this for me? Is cleaning food preparation items really not enough?
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#2 Old 02-24-2016, 11:54 PM
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Are you purchasing and consuming/using animal products? No? Then you're all good.
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#3 Old 02-25-2016, 02:49 AM
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the non vegan was 'shocked'? LOL!
I'd have told them 'yes, I'm fine as long as they're clean. After all, I allowed you in didn't I?

My son used to make meat in my house and I was fine other than cast iron, and cutting boards.

I used to have people ask if I was okay with eating with meat eaters. I think I'd be a basket case if I couldn't. As long as I can't smell it, or it isn't brought up I'm fine. I often just see things as veg. Once I thought someone was eating a brownie with a knife and fork and commented on it-bad idea, it wasn't a brownie

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#4 Old 02-25-2016, 02:59 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DTentacle View Post
Hi all.

I'm a relatively new vegan (a few months and going strong) and I came across something the other day that I had no idea was a thing, and I'm hoping someone can shed some light on it for me.

I was entertaining a guest (non-vegan) the other day, and she was shocked to find out that I used the same pots, pans, knives, forks, chopping boards, etc, as my housemate who is non vegan.

I really don't see the issue with this. Everything is cleaned before use. It's not like I'm not crazy enough to take a knife that was used to cut raw chicken and prepare a salad with it without washing it. It was suggested to me that I'm supposed to get my own things for preparing food. This seems like a great big waste of resources to me when I have perfectly good items that I can already use.

Anyone have any input on this for me? Is cleaning food preparation items really not enough?
The non-vegan being shocked is on her. She eats meat yet is all butthurt that you share kitchenware with your roommate...

I would share the kitchen stuff too if I were in a roommate situation.
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#5 Old 02-25-2016, 04:53 AM
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I live with an omnivore and yes we do use some things separately. I have a nonstick cooking skillet, a large pan, a Blendtec blender, some utensils and cups that are off limits to animal foods and are exclusively mine. I do however share clean plates and other silverware, and we share a refrigerator (though we each have our own areas). We have separate cupboards for our own food. I gladly share my vegan food with him, but I can't have him eating it all lol. I know it is impossible to separate EVERYTHING, and it isn't that big of a deal. People share public places all the time. Vegans buy groceries at stores where meat and dairy are sold. We eat at restaurants where meat is served on the same dishes that have been cleaned.

I just feel like my cookware will last longer and be easier to clean without the added animal grease caked on. Certain meats and dairy leave a residue that doesn't seem to come off completely. So I like to have a few of my own good cookware free from exposure to that. I would never judge anyone for sharing everything.
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#6 Old 02-25-2016, 10:02 AM
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Does she come from a jewish family?
Some serious jews will have separate gear for cooking meat and non-meat items even for their own consumption.
I think its some sort of ancient thing about preventing food poisoning.
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#7 Old 02-25-2016, 10:25 AM
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It's incredible just how much better non-vegans would be at veganism, than vegans are.
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#8 Old 02-25-2016, 10:35 AM
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This is a matter of personal comfort and there is no right or wrong answer. Some vegans will actually cook meat for their family/partner/guests. Others wouldn't let an animal product cross the threshold of their home.

The only thing I'd be concerned about it the cutting board since those can harbor bacteria despite cleaning and there is a real risk of cross contamination if it is also being used for meat. That applies to omnis too. There should ALWAYS be a separate cutting board exclusively for fruit/veg and ideally separate cutting boards for each type of meat. You can get a brand new cutting board for $5 at Ross and just have that be yours. Everything else should be fine to share so long as your ok with it and it is washed thoroughly (which things should be anyways).
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#9 Old 02-25-2016, 10:40 AM
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I share cooking equipment with my non-vegan family members. It makes no difference for the animals, no difference for my health and sharing resources(buying less stuff) is better for the environment.

I could see someone using separate cooking tools if their motivations were religious and purity matters to them, or if they had an extreme food allergy. Otherwise I don't see the point.
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#10 Old 02-25-2016, 01:08 PM
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I live with a omni and I have separate pans, utensils, etc. But I think it is totally what make you feel comfortable...there is no right or wrong, JMHO.
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#11 Old 02-25-2016, 10:38 PM
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I think this is entirely a matter of personal preference. For me, there is no question that animal products cannot be cooked in or on any of my cookware, dishes, etc., nor can animal flesh be in my refrigerator, cupboards, etc. This is an animal flesh-free house! But it's my house...and my rules... Other people have their own rules. Other people may not be bothered by the idea of "contamination" the way I am. (When you really think about it, it's kind of silly! I mean, washing a plate or skillet should make it UNcontaminated, but I still don't care! I don't want animal flesh touching my stuff, even if washing them would make the bad stuff go away.)

My point? It's entirely up to you! If you're okay with using the same items, that's your business. If your attitude should evolve over time--and it might!--you can always change your rules (and buy some new stuff).
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#12 Old 02-26-2016, 07:20 AM
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My partner does eat meat. But honestly most of our home meals are veg because it's just easier that way.
If we have a BBQ or something he get's the meat out.
I'm not too pedantic about it. But I do prefer if my veg sausages are cooked on a different place to the meat ones.
The most annoying thing would be the amount of space the meat takes up in the freezer. I make sure it has it's own draw at the bottom.
I need more space for my frozen veggies and soy ice-cream! XD

Quote:
Originally Posted by silva View Post
I often just see things as veg. Once I thought someone was eating a brownie with a knife and fork and commented on it-bad idea, it wasn't a brownie
Oh. I do this kind of thing too. It's weird. I sort of blank if others are eating meat around me.

I guess it's easier that way.

Although there was one time when I was a teenager I had this instinctual jolt when my sister was eating pizza "No! Wait it has meat on it!" Ugh. Oops. And she loved to tease me about my vegetarianism too.

I guess I realized at that point it had become subconscious for me.
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#13 Old 02-26-2016, 09:19 AM
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Using different food prep items hasn't even occurred to me before. Use boundaries if they make you comfortable and happy and fit with your personal integrity. Contamination is an interesting idea...not sure how it would make a difference for the animals, though.

I love reading VB questions like this, they make me question and analyze my own boundaries and habits!
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#14 Old 02-26-2016, 09:53 AM
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I don't think it makes any difference to the animals, or to being veg*n.

For me, it's a purely emotional response - I feel the same way as if someone was using my cookware/dishes to prepare human flesh. It's just a knee jerk revulsion.
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#15 Old 02-26-2016, 11:09 PM
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It's a matter of practicality in my household. We don't have a large kitchen or a large budget for extra tools and utensils. Ergo, we use the same dishes and food prep tools. The vast majority of what gets cooked in the kitchen is vegan, since I do most of the cooking (it's a stress reducer for me). If the husband wants to cook chicken or pork or eggs, then he uses the same materials. Everything gets washed after use. Good enough for me.
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#16 Old 02-27-2016, 04:53 AM
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Originally Posted by Jenn2 View Post
Using different food prep items hasn't even occurred to me before. Use boundaries if they make you comfortable and happy and fit with your personal integrity. Contamination is an interesting idea...not sure how it would make a difference for the animals, though.

I love reading VB questions like this, they make me question and analyze my own boundaries and habits!
It wouldn't make a difference for the animals, but it is a pretty gross concept if you haven't eaten them in years and are disgusted by flesh that your veg food is touching flesh remnants. I'm also extremely concerned about the bacteria that festers in meat and the risk of cross contamination from porous surfaces.

I personally draw the line at things that could actually have meat residue "left behind" (even the microscopic). That would include the pots/pans with riveted on handles (it's really hard to wash around those rivets and get every microscopic bit off), cutting boards and anything porous (like a wood serving bowl). If properly washing will truly take any germs and residue off, I'm not opposed to it on a logical level (plates, smooth interior pots IF they were to be cleaned entirely with NO blacked fat/flesh residue, stone/glass bakeware and again no baked on residue ext...) even though emotionally I still find it vile and contaminating. Thankful my hubby doesn't like to cook meat for himself and I don't have to worry The last time he attempted to cook chicken (several years ago), it was a disaster and he had a huge mess to clean up. Hasn't attempted to cook meat since and probably never will so long as I keep the yummy vegan foods coming.

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#17 Old 03-01-2016, 03:19 PM
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I think it's about what you are comfortable with, and what you can do. If you are comfortable using the same dishes, it makes practical sense to use them. I completely understand people feeling grossed out by sharing the same plates, etc., with meat eaters, and I totally agree with Kiwibird08 about porous surfaces - ick. Unfortunately, it would make eating out at most restaurants impossible (even vegetarian/vegan restaurants, because a lot serve eggs and dairy). Not everyone can afford separate items, and that shouldn't stop them being vegan

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#18 Old 03-02-2016, 08:15 AM
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The way I see it, it's no different than the 'may contain' label on the back of our vegan food. And I'm sure everyone knows how difficult those can be to run away from.

I don't like meat, I can still see the animal that it once was, which is why I will never again prepare or buy an animal as food. That being said, I won't get upset if I pick up a french fry from a friend's plate that might have, but probably didn't, touch a hamburger. Needless to say, I still use the exact same pots from my non-vegan days. This is just where my comfort level is. Other people might be sickened by the very idea and I understand why. When it comes to things like that no one else can choose for you your own comfort level.
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