As Veganuary 2024 launches, a dedicated panel of specialists predicts the tuber will be the “hottest” vegetable of 2024 based on versatility, sustainability, taste, and more
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE (United States – December 5, 2023) – Veganuary – the global movement to try vegan for January and beyond – is launching its upcoming campaign by announcing the first-ever Veganuary Vegetable of the Year, determined by the panel of experts, including food futurologists, chefs, and members of key nutrition, retail, and sustainability councils. To select 2024’s Vegetable of the Year, the expert panel considered five main criteria: growing popularity, versatility, sustainability, health/nutrition, and affordability/accessibility.
With these criteria in mind, the panel determined the purple sweet potato is the official 2024 Vegetable of the Year. The world will see much more of this trendy tuber, which is becoming more widely known as a superfood for longevity.
Holly Adrien, Natural and Organic Strategy & Innovation Manager at Kroger and a Veganuary Vegetable of the Year panelist, said: “This upgrade to our loved traditional potato has been gaining in popularity. Not only is the purple sweet potato versatile and a visual upgrade to any dish you make, they are an upgrade in nutrition as well, high in fiber, vitamins A and B and packed with antioxidants. Available fresh and frozen, and as an ingredient to amplify dishes, we will continue to see the vibrant purple sweet potato’s popularity grow.”
Veganuary developed its Vegetable of the Year concept in keeping with the global campaign theme “Vote for Veggies,” which aims to celebrate vegetables and highlight their relationship with sustainability, creativity, taste, trends, longevity, and other cultural indicators for the coming year.
Veganuary is positioned to support individuals in creating new recipes with the purple sweet potato, as well as other delicious plant-based foods, through the free resources offered to all 2024 participants. Everyone who registers for the challenge will receive daily plant-based recipes, nutrition guides, a budget meal plan, and access to discounts and special offers. Participants also gain access to a global community of supporters and participants through Veganuary’s podcast, YouTube series, and Facebook groups. This year, Veganuary is also launching its first official cookbook, featuring 100 delicious vegan recipes, available to order now.
“We are excited to welcome everyone to participate in Veganuary 2024 and to encourage people to enjoy a wide variety of vegetables as they shop, cook, and order vegan options at restaurants,” said Sandra Hungate, US Director of Veganuary. “We’ll be sharing new recipes over the month of January and everyone who signs up for Veganuary 2024 will receive a new 7-day recipe guide to eat the rainbow!”
Over the past 90 days, Google searches for “how to cook purple sweet potatoes” are up 160%*. The release of Secrets of the Blue Zones on Netflix earlier this fall sparked public interest in purple sweet potatoes and their reputation as a longevity superfood. Purple sweet potatoes get their vibrant color from the same source as blueberries, the antioxidant anthocyanin. They are also rich in vitamin A (in the form of beta-carotene), vitamin B6, vitamin C, potassium, and fiber. Sweet potatoes are listed among the “Clean Fifteen” in the Environmental Working Group’s 2023 Shopper’s Guide to Pesticides in Produce™.
Veganuary’s 2024 Vegetable of the Year Panelists:
- Holly Adrien, Natural and Organic Strategy & Innovation Manager at Kroger
- Maggie Baird, Founder & President at Support + Feed
- Tabitha Brown, Actor and Influencer
- Simon Cutts, Sr. Director – Retail Partners at SPINS
- Morgaine Gaye, Food Futurologist
- Chris Harris, Category director of produce at New Seasons
- Daniela Lais, Award-winning Cookbook Author and Journalist
- Jami Rokala, Chair at ASPHN Fruit & Vegetable Nutrition Council
- Barbara Ruhs, Retail Health Expert at Progressive Grocer
“Ever since I heard about the purple sweet potato’s history in Japan for longevity, I’ve been excited about them! The antioxidants and benefits linked to reducing chronic illnesses are enough to make anyone a believer! Also, who doesn’t love a potato that can be used in sweet or savory dishes,” said Tabitha Brown, actor and Veganuary Vegetable of the Year panelist. “I’m always willing to participate in spreading good Veggie cheer for the new year! Going vegan changed my life so I always hope to encourage others to give it a try even if it’s just for January!”
Veganuary is supported worldwide by environmentalists, athletes, and celebrities, including Joaquin Phoenix, DeAndre Jordan, Richa Moorjani, and more.
Veganuary is free to join, and people can sign up at veganuary.com to receive new meal plans, the Celebrity eCookbook, the Official Veganuary Starter Kit, and 31 daily emails packed with nutritional info, delicious recipes, and helpful advice.
Veganuary is a non
–profit organization that encourages people worldwide to try vegan for January and beyond. Since Veganuary launched its first pledge 10 years ago – in January 2014 – millions of people, coming from almost every country in the world, have officially taken part. From humble beginnings on a kitchen table in Yorkshire, Veganuary now has campaign hubs in Germany, USA, Brazil, Chile, Argentina, India, Spain and the UK. It has truly become a global phenomenon. This New Year’s revolution has also been embraced by businesses, with hundreds of companies taking part in Veganuary last year, launching thousands of new vegan products and menu items.
Veganuary US Media
* Data gathered from Google Trends on November 30