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Victory for vegans

Victory for vegans

Victory for vegans

Veganism (or flexitarianism at least) is on the rise. The global campaign Veganuary, which sees people go vegan for the month of January, saw a record breaking 500,000 sign ups across the UK this year, with over 1 million taking part since the campaign launched in 2014. Plant based living is certainly a trend set to stay and one thing impacting the campaign success has been the naming of meat substitutes.

In October last year, MP’s rejected the proposal from Common Agricultural policy to ban meat denominations on packaging and menus across the EU. Vegan burgers, sausages and steaks alike are set to stay, bringing victory for vegans. The rules however got stricter for alternative dairy products with a ban on any mention of dairy such as ‘vegan cheese’ or ‘soya milk’, as well as any talk of the health or environmental benefits of going vegan. This is a huge (and expensive) blow for the alternative dairy industry, particularly now, when the time for climate change is rife.

Jasmijn de Boo, vice president of ProVeg International commented on the outcome: “It is inconceivable to us just how the European Parliament could take such different positions on such similar proposals,” and said the new ban on dairy-food phrases would confuse customers.

The re-naming of meat substitutes has been up for discussion for a while. Last year we asked our mystery guests for their thoughts on whether the wording of vegan burgers and sausages should be replaced with terms such as ‘disks’ and ‘tubes’. 60% said yes. We asked again, a year on and the results were quite different with only 18% believing that the names of vegan products should change and 81% feeling that rejecting the proposal to re-name meat substitutes was the right decision.

According to a survey by finder.com, the number of vegans has increased by 62% in the last 12 months and with this growth set to continue, it’s predicted that 15% of the population will be vegan by 2030. These stats are staggering, and it seems the food industry is responding…

UK supermarket, Asda, recently hit headlines as it announced the introduction of over 100 new vegan products to its stores after searches for ‘vegan’ on asda.com had increased by 275% since 2019. With veganism clearly being a movement rather than a moment, a fully dedicated vegan aisle has launched in 359 of its stores as a result.

Over 600 food retailers and restaurants also took part in Veganuary last year, with more than 1200 new vegan items launched on menus. Even KFC sold over 1 Million vegan burgers, that’s one burger sold every three seconds! Third-party delivery giant, Deliveroo also saw a rise of 77% of vegan dishes ordered this January compared with last year. So, despite the blow to the alternative dairy industry, it seems that diners will not be put off meat and dairy alternatives, as their dining habits continue to change at an ongoing rate.

Did you take part in Veganuary this year?

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