LA's vegan restaurants are full of egg sent undercover agents to many of LA's vegan restaurants and ordered take-out food, spiriting it away on ice in sealed bags, then they conducted their own tests for trace amounts of animal products. Turns out that a lot of Thai vegan meat-substitutes are made with egg and other animal products (but seitan and tofu aren't). This kind of elaborate, science-based, complicated investigations into factual questions that matter intensely to small groups of people is one of the things that we mean when we say "citizen journalism."

Posing as owners of a new LA area vegetarian restaurant, we arrived at Bodhi and asked to speak with a customer service manager. We were quickly introduced to a helpful lady who was ready to advise us on what products to buy. She was either the manager or the owner, and most definitely the senior person on-premise at that time.

She showed us to a freezer of "veggie chicken", and we checked the ingredients on the label (all vegan). We asked her why some products have a better mouth texture than others, even though they have no eggs listed as ingredients, and after a long conversation and questions, she said the following:

"We buy most of this veggie meat from a manufacturer in Taiwan. It's produced for the Taiwanese and Chinese vegetarian market then re-labeled for export, often to the USA. I do know of times when things have been labelled incorrectly, but I do my best to make sure that what they send me is what they say it is."

Upon further questioning, she kindly gave us the email address of her contact in Taiwan. She specifically asked that we didn't mention Bodhi Vegetarian Supply when we contacted them, and so we're not disclosing the name of the manufacturer here.

laboratory tests of vegan restaurants in la

(via Waxy)