Vegetarianism in specific countries
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Around the world vegetarianism is viewed in different lights. In some areas there is cultural and even legal support, where in others the diet is poorly understood or even frowned upon. In many countries (such as India) food labeling is in place which makes it easier for vegetarians to identify foods compatible with their diets. In others such as Spain a request for a vegetarian meal may result in one being served tuna or a vegetable soup made with meat stock.
In Australia some manufacturers who target the vegetarian market will label their foods, with the statement 'suitable for vegetarians' however except for foods intended for export to the UK, this labelling can be inconsistent. Flavourings in ingredients lists do not need to specify if they come from animal origin. As such, natural flavour could be derived from either plant or animal sources.
In India vegetarianism is usually synonymous with lacto vegetarianism, although lacto-ovo vegetarianism is practiced as well. Most restaurants in India clearly distinguish and market themselves as being either "Non-Vegetarian", "Vegetarian" or "Pure Vegetarian" (Vegan). Vegetarian restaurants abound, and usually many vegetarian (Shakahari: plant-eater, in Hindi) options are available. Animal based ingredients (other than milk and honey) such as lard, gelatin and meat stock are not used in the traditional cuisine.
According to the 2006 Hindu-CNN-IBN State of the Nation Survey, 31% of Indians are vegetarians, while another 9% consumes eggs. Among the various communities, vegetarianism was most common among Brahmins at 55%, and less frequent among Muslims (3%), Christians (8%) and residents of coastal states respectively. Other surveys cited by FAO , and USDA  estimate 20%-42% of the Indian population as being vegetarian. These surveys indicate that even Indians who do eat meat, do so infrequently, with less than 30% consuming it regularly; although the reasons are partially economical.
India has devised a system of marking edible products made from only vegetarian ingredients, with a green dot in a green square. A mark of a red dot in a red square conveys that some animal based ingredients were used.  Even medicines are similarly marked similarly: a well-known Omega-3 capsule made from flax seeds is marked with a red dot as the capsule uses non-vegetarian ingredients. 
In China, although still a fairly rare practice, Vegetarianism has been around since at least the 7th Century and has been practised by devout Buddhists. In recent years, it has seen a new resurgence in the cities as middle class Chinese pay new attention to issues of health and diet .
In Israel, practicing ovo-lacto-vegetarianism is relatively easy, due to Jewish dietary laws, or kosher laws. Kosher food cannot contain pork or shellfish, and meat and dairy cannot be combined in any way. As a result, most kosher restaurants serve either only dairy or only meat, along with bread, vegetables, fruits, etc. Please note that fish is not considered to be meat under Jewish laws, so it may be served in "dairy" restaurants. Nonetheless, the "dairy" restaurants are usually a very safe bet for ovo-lacto-vegetarians. For vegans, falafel, hummus, and other plant-based Mediterranean foods are a good option. They can be easily found almost anywhere in Israel, and are very popular among Israelis.
In the United States, vegetarianism is usually synonymous with ovo-lacto vegetarianism. However, vegetarians are sometimes wrongly assumed to be pesco/pollo vegetarians who will tolerate some meat. Many restaurants and caterers provide vegetarian options to patrons, often explicitly indicated as such. It is also possible to order a vegetarian meal and be served meat. Polls find that 2.8% of Americans are vegetarian as of 2004 . In addition, vegetarianism in the United States generally reflects regional cultural differences. It is more difficult to find vegetarian options in rural restaurants than in urban ones. The same applies to Midwestern city restaurants compared to West Coast restaurants. This seems to be slowly changing as vegetarian market innovations (such as veggie burgers) attain wider acceptance, demand, and distribution.
A 2002 poll of American adults found the following reasons for choosing a vegetarian lifestyle:
In the United Kingdom, voluntary labelling of vegetarian foods is widespread, but far from universal. Many manufacturers will label food as "suitable for vegetarians", but until recently, no universally agreed definition existed. The Food Standards Agency issued guidance on the labeling of foods as suitable for vegetarians in 2006, which includes the following definition "The term "vegetarian" should not be applied to foods that are, or are made from or with the aid of products derived from animals that have died, have been slaughtered, or animals that die as a result of being eaten. Animals means farmed, wild or domestic animals, including for example, livestock poultry, game, fish, shellfish, crustacea, amphibians, tunicates, echinoderms, mollusks and insects." 
In addition, the Vegetarian Society operates a scheme where foods that meet its strict criteria can be labelled as "Vegetarian Society-approved". Cheese is often labelled as well, making it possible to identify cheeses that have been made with non-animal rennet. Flavourings in ingredients lists do not need to specify if they come from animal origin, which can make identifying vegetarian foods difficult if they are not otherwise labelled as such. The British Vegetarian Society regards a product as vegetarian if it is free of meat, fowl, fish, shellfish, meat or bone stock, animal or carcass fats, gelatin, aspic, or any other ingredient resulting from slaughter, such as rennet.
In Ireland, food labelling is in place.
In Spain, most vegetarian meals will be served with egg, or even tuna. Stock is normally used in vegetable soups and many sauces.
In France the situation is similar to that in Spain, but is slightly less unfavourable.
In Germany, the confusion of vegetarianism with pesco/pollo vegetarianism is also common. There is no food labelling in place, and buying only vegetarian foods can involve having to read the fine printed ingredients list ("Zutaten") on many food products. However widespread Wholefood emporia provide sources for vegetarian foods in even remote areas.
In Norway, conditions are similar to Germany, except pollo-vegetarianism is largely unknown and organic foods stores are less wide spread. Ovo-lacto-vegetarians make out 1-2% of the population, and food targeted for vegetarians is sold mainly in health food stores and supermarkets that focus on selection. Most restaurants will have one or two vegetarian entries on the menu, or at least produce something on request.