Every year, people from across the world take a pledge to turn vegan for the month of January. The whole concept is popularly known as Veganuary, and was started by a UK-based non-profit organisation in 2014. The movement aims to encourage people to consume only plant-based foods throughout the month.
Veganuary has been receiving extraordinary response, and in 2021, over 5,00,000 people have pledged to go vegan for the month of January. Of this number, over 48,000 sign ups have come from India alone!
Toni Vernelli, Head of Communications and Marketing International at Veganuary, told The Vegan Indians, “We currently have 48,000 people signed-up from India but this will definitely increase over the rest of the month as people continue to sign-up throughout January.” The figures prove that veganism is becoming popular in India and people have started understanding the significance of this ethical lifestyle. Veganuary team is also looking at expanding its work in India in collaboration with certain groups here.
The sudden interest in veganism and its growth over the last few years can easily be attributed to factors such as increasing awareness through social media, inflow of brands selling vegan products, emergence of mock meats, overall concern for animals, health and environment, as well as the coronavirus pandemic. People have started associating animal agriculture with the spread of zoonotic diseases amongst humans. They are also getting concerned about the climate crisis, becoming more conscious about the impact that their food has on the environment. According to sources, over 63 percent of India’s total greenhouse gas emissions from agriculture come from livestock farming. All of this has made Indians show their willingness to adopt plant-based foods.