You Can’t Call it Chicken

There’s this funny thing called language, Phil, and when it’s written down, it is made up of letters. There are 26 of them in the English alphabet, and we use these letters to make different words, as it would be confusing if all our words were the same.

Despite this, some words ARE the same and it’s the context that helps guide us. So, when playing cricket and you are going out to bat, you are not handed a small flying mammal. And when we say we are getting the band back together, no one thinks we spend our evenings gluing together a rubber band that we found in pieces on the street. Context is important but when words look or sound the same, there are still a few tips and tricks available to us to make sure people understand what we are trying to convey.

Now, you may wonder why we chose a word quite close to ‘chicken’ to describe our vegan product. It’s because VFC looks, cooks and tastes like chicken, and by doing this, we are helping people understand what they are getting. They may then buy VFC instead of chicken meat if they wanted a tasty burger or fancied something crispy to dip into a tangy sauce.  So, we changed one letter as a way of saying: HELLO FRIENDS, THIS IS LIKE CHICKEN BUT IT IS NOT MADE ACTUALLY MADE FROM CHICKENS. Smart hey?

Even so, not everyone notices that two words with one letter different actually mean different things. Some men, for example (and maybe you know them) may pull up to a hotel that offers FREE WIFI and are disappointed that their future bride is not waiting for them inside. Similarly, they may see a sign saying PLEASE USE THE TONGS to pick up baked goods at the store, but they have to go hungry because they cannot find the underpants they’ve been required to use.

And so, we have taken a belt-and-braces approach. Don’t just change one letter, we thought, add an adjective, a describing word, just to be sure. And the word we chose is ‘vegan’. We figured that this should signal to anyone with a functioning cortex that our products are, in fact, vegan.

We use the word ‘vegan’ liberally and in big letters; we put it on our website, on all our packaging, in our adverts, on our social media, in the name of the product and even in our own name. That way, there can be no confusion. Or so we thought. Until you came along and now we are wondering if we are still pitching just a little too high.

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