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: What is the standard way for conveying vegan and vegetarian as separate icons? Working on a project, I need 2 icons for Vegan and Vegetarian to display at a glance nutritional information. The


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Working on a project, I need 2 icons for Vegan and Vegetarian to display at a glance nutritional information. The problem that I'm running into is that there doesn't seem to be a good way to have each icon stand alone and the user knowing exactly what it stands for, example below.

Vt vs Vg

Vt is fairly easy to understand as vegetarian. But Vg runs the problem of not knowing that its Vegan without seeing the other icon. Is there a standard way for conveying vegan and vegetarian?

Additional Specs:
The icons will be used in a variety of sizes from 150x150px to 24x24px. Here's an example of the current icon set:

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I was also looking for this, but it appears there is no standard. I really liked the following icons though:

I don't know who designed them because all websites I found them on (I used Google image search) appear to be unresponsive...

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As a vegan, I usually come across "V" for blindly vegetarian and "Ve"/"Vg" for vegan. Most dishes have both "V" and "Ve"/"Vg" when vegan, FWIW.

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My experience (as a British vegan of ~20 years) is that the most common is to use "V" for vegetarian, and "Ve" for Vegan.

For example, see the menu for Zizzi:

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Just observe that vegan is "very" vegetarian. Not literally, but this makes sense to people. So use schema like:

* = vegetarian, ** = vegan
V = vegetarian, VV = vegan
(V) = vegetarian, ((V)) = vegan (getting complicated but the relation is yet clear)

or so forth.

In my experience if I can identify a pair of vegetarian-related symbols where one of them seems like the stronger version of the other, I quickly associate with vegetarian and vegan and know which is which.

Note this design relies on a good chance for a user to find both symbols and make the association. An accessible legend is not a bad thing here.

Note that adding modifier symbols can go back to being ambiguous. "V" for vegetarian with "Vg" for vegan could be confused for "vegan + gluten" or something (of course gluten is vegan, but do they know you know that?). If done clearly and consistently, the a la carte approach to what nutrient or allergen is in a food can be pretty neat and get a lot of information across cleanly. I've seen regular soup delis that have signage like "D=dairy, G=gluten, M=meat, F=fish, E=egg", where each indicator is additive, and everyone can sort out what they're looking for from there.

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What would be clearest to me would be a steak within a cancel sign for vegetarian, and the same but with milk, eggs, and steak for vegan.

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A green V and V+ is a solution that stuck with me after seeing it in few vegetarian/vegan friendly restaurants.

I don't think it is a standard per se, but IMHO it was easy to understand and differentiate between the two at a glance.

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Given how many icons are in the set provided, and that most of them are pictorial rather than alphabetic, why not avoid letters entirely, and just use multiple symbols for each item to represent what's actually in the food?

Pragmatically speaking, most people just want to know how to avoid things they don't want in their diet, so show them what's in there rather than expecting them to understand a somewhat arbitrary designation like vegetarian.

If something has only plant ingredients, show only plant icons. If it's plant + dairy, it has both plant and dairy icons, etc. Combine with the No symbol to specifically indicate something is not included in an item that usually has it, such as a No Wheat icon for a non-wheat bread, or No Meat for a veggie burger. (Wheat example)

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My favorite Vietnamese place for several years used a circle with a diagonal bar across it (the classic 'no' sign) over a ?pig or maybe cow? for 'no meat' and the same 'no' sign over a swiss cheese wedge and an egg for 'no dairy or eggs'. Seemed to work out okay.

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I am not sure about you guys, but I used to work as a chef so from my experience people acknowledge 'V' as Vegan and "Vg' as Vegetarian.

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You could try the same simple symbol but in different colors, like the V with a leaf provided by @luciano , but green for vegetarian and brown for vegan.

I know when I've been looking for items in a menu that are vegan/vegetarian, I immediately look down at the bottom of the menu for what denotes that, and then only zero in on those items. So if I'm vegan, I know just to look for brown symbols.

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The standard for vegetarian is generally just a "V", usually in a green circle or something similar, and that'll be pretty much universally understood.

The Vegan Society has "the Vegan Trademark" which has been around a long time and since it explicitly says "Vegan" there's no ambiguity as there is with "Vg" vs "Vt". I have seen "Vg" and "Vt" used in the past, and even as someone who was vegan for ~12 years it wasn't clear to me what they meant; so stay away from using those.

Something that's worth pointing out though... If something is vegan it is by definition also vegetarian so there's generally no need for both icons; if someone sees "Vegan" they already know it's vegetarian.

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These terms are too closely related to be differentiated by just using an acronym without any context. Without getting into too much detail, Vegetarian diet includes dairy, and Vegan is exclusively plant based.

With a quick trip to Google you will find plenty of examples of how to represent these items in a graphic form.

So vegetarian could have both a vegetable and a dairy item (milk or cheese, for example):

and vegan could be just a plant:

Although for the sake of consistency the vegetable symbol in both icons should be the same, would make it easier to understand the meaning of the icons.

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