A quarter of a million people tried vegan and almost half will stay vegan!
It was the year of the infamous sausage roll, a year when even Gordon Ramsay accepted the rise of veganism, and when more people than ever – a cool quarter of a million – signed up to take part in Veganuary. So, now the dukkah dust has settled and we are brushing the crumbs of flaky pastry from our shirts, what do the figures tell us about who went vegan, why and for how long?
A record-breaking 250,310 people from 190 countries registered for the month-long vegan pledge. As in previous years, the majority of participants were women (87%), most were meat-eaters (44%) and were in the 25-34 age range (28%).
For the first time ever, health became the major driver for people taking part (46%), with animals (34%) and then the environment (12%) cited as reasons for people wanting to eschew animal products for the month.
60% of participants we surveyed* told us the Veganuary challenge was easier than they had anticipated, and 51% felt their decision to stay vegan was influenced by the discovery of great-tasting food. And it’s good news for all those who registered hoping for a health boost – 63% of participants reported an improvement to their overall health.
Whatever their age, sex and reason for taking part, Veganuary must be doing something right: a whopping 98% said they would recommend Veganuary to others.
Veganuary 2019 will be remembered for the unprecedented number of new dishes and products launched by retailers and restaurants. There was, of course, Gregg’s sausage roll which drove a sharp rise in sales with the company’s annual figure exceeding £1bn for the very first time. Pizza Hut had expected to sell 10,000 vegan pizzas in January and in the end reported sales of 28,000, while Sainsbury’s launched 25 new vegan products including jackfruit quarter pounders and seitan bacon, in anticipation of the Veganuary Class of 2019. This surge in plant-based provision is what we call ‘The Veganuary Effect’.
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