Rennet, one of the key ingredients in cheese making, is often described as “the inner lining of a calf’s stomach”. Most people don’t take this to mean much, as they think, “well, yeah, so a calf had to die for my cheese; so what?”
Rennet is literally calf bile. Sounds tasty already, huh?
Every package of cheese that says “enzymes” in the ingredient list in the US is almost guaranteed to have calf bile (while slightly less likely in the UK). The fact that rennet is in nearly every cheese might make this unvegetarian in the eyes of most, seeing as it comes from the death of a baby cow. There are specialty dairy “cheeses” made for vegetarians that do not contain animal rennet, but you can be sure that if you’re going out for pizza at some local pizzeria (especially in the US), they aren’t using that special cheese. They are using the same bile everyone else is eating.
Let’s make this clear: Most cheese is not vegetarian.
But, hey, enjoy the food you say you could never give up. You could try to buy expensive vegetarian cheese for the rest of your life, still contributing to the torture and slaughter of dairy cows…
or you could try to go vegan. There is a myriad of different ways to get that cheezy flavour in the wide world of vegan food, such as store bought vegan shredded cheeses, bricks, squares, slices and more. There’s also nutritional yeast, which is cheaper than buying most any type of cheese you’ve bought before, and is versatile for so many different recipes. Vegan mac and cheeze will blow you away.
When you can have your “cheeze” and eat it too, going vegan seems like the smart, tasty, and bile-free choice.
Sorry, I’ve been vegetarian longer than many have been alive. I’ll never be vegan, and I don’t need to be told what to do in this regard. If you can’t respect that someone is vegetarian, then I don’t know what to say.
Also, being truly vegan is basically impossible. Many vegans rely on supplements which come from animal sources, use medication with animal ingredients, drive cars or ride bikes with stearic acid in the rubber tires, on and on.
Even if a cheese says it doesn’t have rennet in it, it is still full of hormones, cholesterol, and PUS. Cows used for dairy are hooked up to machines their entire lives, have their babies ripped away from them, and are eventually slaughtered and turned into cheap hamburger meat once their bodies give out. 🙁