Is Veganuary A Success?
To eat meat or not to eat meat – that is not the only question.
After the notable popularity of the “Veganuary” campaign in which participants were asked to give up meat, or at least, eat less of it during the month of January, it’s clear that companies involved in the production of meat for human consumption have made a clear point that they are and will continue to push back.
This is most notable when it comes to the push to do away with red meat products. Chief among these industry leaders are the Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board (AHDB), Hybu Cig Cymru (HCC) and Quality Meat Scotland (QMS) which are pooling their resources to fight the movement away from meat.
What is so striking is that, what many average consumers don’t realize is that the consumption of meat is dropping dramatically in many parts of the world but particularly in the U.K. where recent sales figures show that the sale of pork and beef products has dropped by £185 million in 2019 while, at the same time the sale of meat free alternatives increased by eighteen percent over the same period.
Taking January Back from Veganuary
According to a number of people who are well-positioned in the industry there is a sense that the month of January has been lost to the proponents of an alternative lifestyle which leans toward non-meat products in food but also non-animal products when it comes to any items which may involve farm animals and their treatment.
Still, there are others in the meat and farm industry who now see January as an opportunity to reclaim much of what has been lost to Vegans, Veganism and those who support its spread throughout the population.
This best exemplified by the school of thought that, because the public eye is no focused the industry, that Veganuary is the time when it can use that attention to highlight the benefits that it provides and push back on what it believes to be a lot of false information which has been negatively affecting its reputation and perception amongst the general population for a long time.
A big part of that is the desire to highlight the long history of meat as a staple and a core part of a balanced and healthy diet.
What Is The Truth about Veganism?
As we mentioned earlier, it is the belief of many in the meat industry that the supporters of Veganuary that there is a concerted campaign to destroy their business model and they, as a whole, are looking for strategies as well as every opportunity to push back against it. In fact, many in the industry are saying that the push to move away from the consumption of meat, in general, but mainly the use of red meat is being done through the spread of a great deal of misinformation – a claim that many believe to be completely unfounded.
Some see it as no surprise that the meat industry is combating this perception and the fact that they are fighting back against the spread of acceptance when it comes to the adoption of veganism in the broader culture. Still, the proponents of veganism are, themselves, pushing back against the notion that they are employing misinformation in the fight to end the consumption of meat.
One of the most notable statements being made by these anti-meat groups is the claims that they are simply in agreement with the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change and other researchers whose findings indicate that there is nearly unanimous consensus that plant-based diet for humans can greatly diminish the impacts of climate change as we move forward.
The Question Of Who To Believe
As some on the pro-vegan side like to point out, they have no real vested interest in providing the public with misleading information. Unlike those involved in the meat industry the vegan movement is not facing the collapse of its source of income. However, it should also be pointed out that there are interested parties who would benefit from a shift in food consumption as there are many industries which would benefit from billions of people changing what they eat from one set of products to another. This is true even if that change might lead to a decrease in climate change and its impact on the planet.
Some vegan proponents view it as a shame that the meat industry appears to be more concerned with short-term profits and short-sighted goals instead of the long term health of our environment and the planet as a whole. In fact, many have suggested that the meat industry could continue to thrive if it were more willing to help create a more sustainable food ecosystem through the use of innovation.
Still, despite the reluctance of some in the meat industry, there are signs that others among them are moving toward innovation as a means of economic survival by doing the very thing that vegan proponents have suggested. And many in the U.K. have pointed to some companies in the United States and their efforts as a guide for many of the meat companies in the U.K.
Stay tuned for more articles about veganism in our Health section!