Conceived in 2014 by Jane Land and Matthew Glover, the Veganuary campaign challenges participants to only eat vegan during January. In 2015, the campaign took place for the first time. In 2022, it saw more than 629,000 people sign up on its website. While it was started in the United Kingdom the campaign by now has become international. Next to the UK, sign-ups are especially high in India and the United States. The UK-based nonprofit of the same name runs the campaign itself in seven countries, while in five more countries partner organizations run the Veganuary campaign. Veganuary can also rely on a group of celebrities and ambassadors to further spread its message. Sir Paul McCartney and Joaquin Phoenix are official ambassadors for the campaign, with other celebrities such as Alec Baldwin also voicing their support publicly.
Participation in detail
It is estimated that ten times more people participate than sign-up. By the fifth of January 2021, 513,663 people had signed up for Veganuary and by the end of January, the number had increased to 582,538. That would put the estimated total participation at five to six million. The following year, sign-ups increased again by over 46,000. This becomes even more impressive when we take into account that only 1,280 people signed up in 2015. In 2021, women made up the overwhelming majority of sign-ups. A survey carried out a year later, among participants, identified animals and their well-being as the leading motivator for taking part in Veganuary. Personal health and the environment were also significant reasons to go vegan for a month.
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Research expert covering food & agriculture in the UK & Europe