Is Honey Vegan?
[Omaha Vegan Examiner]
This isn't the first time a vegan writer has addressed this question but I'm dissatisfied by the approaches I've observed so far. The debate over the veganity of honey considers whether or not one is cruel or exploitative in harvesting honey from bees.
However, the word "vegan" is not loosely-defined nor a slang term. Rather, "vegan" has a strict definition defended and created by the Vegan Society still operating with educational resources and the first vegan trademark for vegan products. Like it or not, the Vegan Society is the authority on what is or is not vegan. I mean, it's their word!
If a company approaches the Vegan Society with a product absent from all animal products except honey, the product will not qualify to carry the logo. the fact that honey is not vegan by definition is compelling.
However, honey production is actually essential to the smashing and killing of these beings as the above article explains. As a biology student, I also believe this idea is another helping of population dynamics oversimplification or the belief that humans are needed to keep populations of animals within 'normal' amounts. Without getting too technical, bee populations can be supported simply by providing usable resources and habitats specific to the needs of the particular species which would flower the plant/tree.
Pollination, in fact, doesn't actually require a bee. Pollination is simply the exchange of pollen from the anthers to the stamens of a flower or flowers. This means flowering plants can be pollinated artificially; sometimes with nothing more than a brush.