In 2006, 150,000 people in the UK opted for a plantbased diet. Today (2016), 542,000 do. That’s a 350% increase (in 10 years). The vegan diet became increasingly mainstream in the 2010s. The European Parliament defined the meaning of VEGAN for food labels in 2010, in force as of 2015. NO DOUBT, Veganism is growing rapidly around and the world, and now we know that 6% of Americans identify as vegan - up from only 1% in 2014 according to a highly regarded industry report released on June 2017.
Philanthropist Bill Gates took to his blog (on 2013) to explore the environmental impact of meat consumption, and perhaps most importantly, alternatives to eating animals. As Gates notes, meat consumption has doubled in the last twenty years alone. With more countries growing and developing, that number is expected to double again by 2050. But, raising livestock (who eat the plants we grow and drink fresh water) takes a whole lot of resources. More resources than this little blue planet can handle.
The Executive Chairman of Google‘s parent company Alphabet, Eric Schmidt, has spoken out in support of the growing vegan movement (in 2017), stating that a vegan revolution is coming. Excitingly, he said that the move away from animal products and towards plantbased protein is the ‘number one game changing trend of the future.’ And, given that we are increasingly aware of the disastrous impact animal agriculture has on the climate, animal-product consumption on our health, and the moral implications of farming and slaughter, the idea that veganism is set to grow is a welcome suggestion.
Google Trends, which records how many searches are made for particular terms is showing that searches for ‘vegan’ have never been higher. The search interest for “vegan” spiked in 2015, increasing 32% from the previous year, a figure than can be attributed to the plethora of positive news stories about plant-based diets and the growing number of vegans.Encouragingly, this trend showed no signs of slowing down in 2016 however as Google Trends show an astonishing 90% increase in ‘vegan’ searches in last 12 months.
In August 2016, after interviewing HSUS President Wayne Pacelle (President of The Humane Society of the United States), Oprah Winfrey pledged to go meat-free on Mondays and asked her huge fanbase (33 millions) to do the same.