Studies & Numbers

New Survey Reveals Over 40% of UK Men Express Interest in Vegan Diet

Today, coinciding with World Vegan Day, The Vegan Society has revealed “encouraging” figures from its latest research showing that 41% of UK males (in the sample group) express an interest in going vegan or have said they are planning to do so.

Veganism has gained popularity in the last decade, particularly in the UK; however, only 37% of the UK vegan population are men. Aware of this fact, The Vegan Society has been researching the gender imbalance in vegan and vegetarian populations to understand why men are less likely to adopt a vegan lifestyle. 

Young men, traditional masculinity, and health

For this new research, the organisation surveyed 1,000 men in the UK, questioning their views on adopting vegan diets and the potential barriers to veganism.

vegan nutrition plant-based food
© photoschmidt – stock-adobe.com

The survey shows that from the 40% of the men interested in becoming vegan, the majority belonged to younger age groups, with men between 25-34 more interested in veganism. The research also revealed that for many individuals, “giving up meat” was the main reason for not adopting a vegan diet. 

“There is some evidence that consuming meat is still perceived by many as linked to masculinity. This notion is still prevalent in the cultural debate on conceptions of traditional masculinity as meat has come to be associated with strength, high performance and dominance over other species,” explains The Vegan Society. 

Meanwhile, according to the findings, for 30% of non-vegan men, health and nutrition represent a barrier to veganism. Non-vegan men had specific concerns about shifting to a vegan diet, such as nutritional deficiencies, lack of energy, or impact on long-term health issues.

Vegan and Thriving

To help people, specifically men, overcome the barriers related to health and nutrition, Vegan and Thriving, a campaign run by the Vegan Society during World Vegan Month, shows that vegan diets can lead to active and healthy lifestyles. 

plant man
© malp – stock.adobe.com

The campaign offers resources and information from health professionals and offers balanced recipes to support peoples’ transition. Additionally, it includes a short film and interviews with vegan men, discussing their vegan journey and masculinity.

Hannah Montgomery, campaigns manager at The Vegan Society, comments: “It’s really encouraging to learn that a significant proportion of men are interested in going vegan, but we are aware there is still work to be done, not only to support the general public in adopting a healthy vegan lifestyle, but particularly men who are exposed to the pressures of traditional masculinity.” 

“Our campaign, Vegan and Thriving, aims to dismantle any negative views when it comes to veganism and masculinity – showing that veganism can be a form of strength and compassion and that anyone can be vegan and thrive,” she added.

World Vegan Day was initially established in 1994 to commemorate the 50th anniversary of The Vegan Society. It has since evolved into World Vegan Week and, ultimately, World Vegan Month.

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