World Vegan Day is an annual event celebrated by vegans around the world every 1st November.
The benefits of veganism for humans and the natural environment are celebrated through activities such as setting up stalls, hosting potlucks, and planting memorial trees.
The event was established in 1994 by Louise Wallis, then Chair of The Vegan Society in the United Kingdom, to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the founding of the organisation and the coining of the terms “vegan” and “veganism”.
A plant-based diet is often promoted as the healthiest approach to eating, and its benefits extend way beyond weight loss.
For years, both registered dietitians and food scientists have publicised the benefits of eating plants and cutting back on meat.
“A global switch to diets that rely less on meat and more on fruit and vegetables could save up to 8 million lives by 2050, reduce greenhouse gas emissions by two thirds, and lead to healthcare-related savings and avoided climate damages of $1.5 trillion (US)”
Oxford Martin School researchers have found.
It seems people are catching on, however there are several different interpretations of the diet:
- Vegetarian Diet Individuals, who are vegetarian, may eat cheese, eggs, and milk, but they do not eat meat, such as chicken, pork, and beef. Instead of meat, they lean on plant-based protein.
- Vegan Diet These people choose to forgo animal products altogether (including milk, cheese, and honey) and exclusively eat plants as part of a vegan lifestyle.
- Raw Vegan Diet Others may follow the aforementioned rules and eat only raw, plant-based foods.
- Flexitarian Diet Some people are more flexible. They try to simply cut down on their meat intake and eat a diet that’s primarily filled with plants but with some animal products here and there.
2020 was a big year for veganism in the UK. And judging by the response to Veganuary this year, the rise of the movement for culinary, social, and agricultural change is set to continue in 2021. What’s more, the responses from retail giants and entrepreneurs will continue to make it easier for people to switch to a plant-based diet.
According to the Guardian, a record 500,000 people, of whom 125,000 are based in the UK, took the Veganuary pledge to eat only vegan food in January. The figure is up by 100,000 on last year’s, and it’s double the number of people who signed up for Veganuary in 2019.
However, this time, it’s not just individuals who are getting into the vegan spirit. The beginning of 2021 has seen major supermarket brands doing more to cater to the growing number of Brits who have turned their back on animal products.
Tasty and exciting, convenient, and wide-ranging, we’ve got a bumper selection of vegan foods – with more being introduced each month. Whether you’re vegan, veggie or flexi, at the Co-op we love giving you options.
Veganism In The UK – Stats At A Glance
- A record half a million Brits signed up to Veganuary in 2021
- Deliveroo’s vegan orders spiked by 163% in 2020
- 2 million British adults currently follow a meat-free diet
- 13 million Brits will be meat-free by the end of the year 2021
- The number of vegans in the UK has increased by 445,428 people (40%) over the past 12 months.
- Vegans and vegetarians look set to make up a quarter of the British population in 2025
- If the 2 million people who intend to become vegan this year do so, the number of vegans will increase by 132%.
- In 2020, The Grocer reported 62% of adults in the UK had purchased plant milk.
- 10% of British children aged eight to 16 are vegan or vegetarian
- The number of vegan residents in UK care homes has almost trebled in the five years to 2019
- 19% of people check if their toiletries are tested on animals
- Generation Z (aged 18 -23) are currently the most meat-free generation
- 262,000 more men than women don’t consume meat (7.2 million vs 7 million)
- Those who eat meat spend £645 extra a year on food, compared to those on a meat-free diet
- 50% of Brits said they know someone who is vegan
- Sainsbury’s sales of its vegan cheeses surpassed the company’s predictions by 300%.
- The global vegan meat market is expected to be worth $8.3 billion by 2025
Why not try these delicious vegan recipes:
Vegan Carbonara: https://food.chelmsfordstar.coop/food/vegan-carbonara-vg
Vegan Millionaires: https://food.chelmsfordstar.coop/food/vegan-millionaires-shortbread-vg
Vegan Coconut Curry: https://food.chelmsfordstar.coop/food/vegan-coconut-curry