This year we have been proud Official Supporter of Veganuary and now that the month of Veganuary is ending, we can say it: it was a great success! Pledges for 2019 plant-based campaign exceeded those in previous four years combined!
Veganuary ends on record high with 250,000 participants
A record 250,000 people worldwide signed up to the Veganuary movement this year by embracing plant-based diets this month, the campaign has revealed.
As more consumers drop all meat and dairy products from their diet for health or ethical reasons, the charity behind the annual event said the record figures and strong global support had made 2019’s Veganuary the most popular since its launch in 2014. Many more people are thought to have taken part in the event without signing the official pledge.
At the same time, Britain’s supermarkets are reporting a surge in sales of vegan food and drink, which they expect to continue throughout the year. They are tapping into not only the burgeoning vegan market but also the UK’s estimated 22 million “flexitarians”, who enjoy meat but want to reduce their meat consumption.
The number of Veganuary pledges for 2019 exceeded those in the previous four years combined, suggesting that veganism is becoming a mainstream movement. The organisers of Veganuary say six in 10 who take the “Veganuary pledge” say they plan to stay vegan.
Thirteen new overseas partnerships increased Veganuary’s presence elsewhere in the world – in India, Sweden, Brazil, Argentina, Chile, Peru, Singapore, Malaysia, Australia, South Africa, Japan, Iceland and Russia.
“With a quarter of a million participants this year, Veganuary is finishing on an all-time high,” said Rich Hardy, head of campaigns at Veganuary. “I think Veganuary has reached critical mass now – vegan living is growing; it’s here to stay, it’s part of the national conversation and it has credibility. That’s great news for people, animals and the planet.”
Support for the campaign has also led to a vegan boost among food producers, with supermarkets, manufacturers and high street restaurant and pub chains also bolstering their plant-based ranges to meet demand.
The Papa John’s takeaway chain this week ran into trouble with vegans who claimed they were sent real cheese pizzas after dairy-free alternatives ran out.
On supermarket wine aisles, sales of Co-op’s own-label vegan varieties have doubled since it rolled out front-of-pack labelling last year. A new organic and vegan white wine has also had a fivefold increase in sales.
Tesco says sales of a non-meat version of the Scottish delicacy haggis have increased by 120% year on year. “The current clamour for vegan and vegetarian food has really helped send sales soaring,” said the retailer’s local sourcing buying manager, James Lamont. “Even though vegetarian haggis has been around for a few years, we have never seen anything like the current demand – not just for Burns Night but all year round.”
Sainsbury’s has recently started selling fake meat next to the real thing, after a successful trial last year when it launched a new range of plant-based burgers and mince.
Written by Rebecca Smithers (Consumer affairs correspondent) on The Guardian.