Fri. Mar 22nd, 2024

Veganuary 2022: How to reduce your animal product intake

By Jamelia S Brown Jan 17, 2022
Veganuary spelt out, V is two carrotsVeganuary is a popular new year challenge. Credit: Phil Rees/Shutterstock.

Veganuary is an annual challenge which encourages people to give up animal products such as meat, fish, eggs and dairy for the month of January.

This is a popular resolution for many as just under a third of Brits plan to cut down on their meat intake and improve their diet in 2022.

Launched by the Veganuary charity in 2014, the campaign hit an all-time high sign-up figure of 580,000 in 2021.

The challenge is branded as a success as 85 per cent of participants plan to make permanent changes to their diet after January.

bar chart showing that every year, more people sign up to Veganuary.
The number of people taking part in Veganuary has risen exponentially in recent years. Credit: Veganuary.

Veganuary’s mission is to inspire and support people to make lifestyle choices, driving change and creating a worldwide movement.

The most popular reasons for undertaking the challenge include personal health, animal wellbeing and concerns about the environment.

The University of Oxford has recently said following a vegan diet could be the “single biggest way to reduce your environmental impact on the planet“.

Additional benefits are reduced risks of diseases and not contributing to farming industries that cause suffering to animals.

The number of people following a vegan diet has increased massively in recent years with 7.2 million Brits following a meat-free diet. Vegans and vegetarians are set to make up a quarter of the population by 2022.

In 2019, one in four food products introduced into supermarket shelves were labelled as vegan.

As companies cash into this growing trend, to celebrate the plant-based challenge, they have launched a plethora of vegan food lines.

Some of the most anticipated drops this year include dairy-free Babybel cheese, vegan Magnum ice creams, three new Krispy Kreme doughnuts and Quorn to-go sandwiches. 

krispy kreme doughnuts in a shop
The popular doughnut brand has hopped onto the Veganuary bandwagon. Credit: Terry Harris/Shutterstock.

Additionally, restaurant and fast food chains have also brought out plant-based options, making the transition even easier for new vegans by making sure you’re not missing out.

This year’s most popular release is McDonald’s McPlant burger, made with Beyond Meat and pea protein cheese.

Tips to reduce your animal product intake

bowl of vegetables and chickpeas
A vegan diet doesn’t have to be boring. Credit: Terry Harris/Shutterstock.
  1. Try small swaps at first. You don’t need to go cold turkey. Try switching to dairy free milk when grabbing a coffee or choosing a meat-free sandwich with your next meal deal.
  2. When making a meal, try substituting meat with beans or pulses, which are packed with protein. For example, try black beans in fajitas instead of chicken or lentils in a lasagna instead of mince.
  3. Don’t be scared of tofu. Tofu has a bad reputation for being tasteless but once you master it in the kitchen, it becomes an amazing meat substitute.
  4. Follow vegan recipe Instagram and TikTok accounts for your next meal inspiration. Some of our favourites are @fitgreenmind @plantyou @get.plant.ed.
  5. Don’t let cooking meals out put you off. Nearly every restaurant has a growing vegan menu and you would be surprised at how similar some of the alternatives are.

By Jamelia S Brown

She/Her Third-year journalism student at Kingston University I like to write about sustainability, social issues, feminism and pop culture.

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