Veganuary 2021 Style!

Well Veganuary is almost over, not quite, but we’re over halfway there and it feels brighter already. Try something new and consider going vegan or just eating more vegan food for the rest of January and beyond 2021 style! And since time is something we have a lot of right now, why not use it to delve into the wonderful world of plant-based eating.

Why Vegan?

The impetus to go vegan starts with an awakening around the food system connected to meat, dairy and other animal by-products, a sharp health focus due to a health scare or environmental concerns in relation to climate change. 45% of the earth’s land is used for farming livestock and that type of farming contributes to 18% of the total greenhouse gas emissions. Going vegan can lower those emissions and could contribute to a healthier lifestyle and a reduced risk of certain cancers, heart disease and type 2 diabetes. Vegan diets are richer in anti-oxidants, fibre, magnesium, potassium and vitamins A, C and E. The Game Changers documentary on Netflix in 2019 (did we just skip a year?!) brought the vegan movement to a wider audience and became a real conversation starter.

The Happy Pear – health, happiness, community

When talking about being vegan in Ireland, its hard to ignore the swim-rise twins Steve and Dave Flynn. Love them or hate them, they have started a vegan revolution of their own using the mantra of ‘health, happiness and community’ to underpin all that they do. They started out in 2004 with a small vegetable shop in their home town of Greystones in County Wicklow which they developed into a world renowned café. They are now authors of 5 (yes 5!) cookbooks and have developed food products that are for sale across Ireland in several major supermarkets as well as co-ordinating and teaching healthy eating courses online. Calling them vegan ambassadors is probably an under statement at this stage.

How to Start

Small steps to begin with – get a book or vegan magazine or follow a blog (Youtube and Instagram are falling over themselves with vegan chefs).

Avoid too many ‘pretend’ meats – they can have complicated ingredients and additives in them so go for legumes and pulses instead. You could try chickpeas as a protein substitute for lamb in a Moroccan Tagine for example.

Keep it simple and discover what you want to develop for your own particular vegan journey as you might be drawn to a European or Asian style of cooking so go with that.

Books, blogs and bits & bobs

Oh She Glows (aka Angela Liddon) brought out a new book in October 2020 to rave reviews Oh She Glows for Dinner: Nourishing Plant-Based Meals to Keep You Glowing. For more than a decade, Liddon has been one of the biggest names in the world of healthy cooking blogs. Famous for her flavourful, creative and whole foods approach to plant-based cooking, her recipes are popular whether you are vegan, plant-based curious or simply looking to add more energizing ingredients to your meals without sacrificing on taste. Click here for more info

Social media personality and vegan chef Tabitha Brown was one of the shining lights of 2020 with her warmth and charm. She now has over 4 million followers on Tik Tok and 3 million on Instagram and her content and recipes provide comforting and calming interludes in a challenging time. Click here for more info 

And its definitely time for vegan cheese and wine to start taking centre stage. Lots of interesting products emerging in that corner at the moment so watch this space for a bigger exploration of that subject in the coming months.

And remember, there is a lot of vegan junk food too so don’t assume if it says vegan on the label that its super healthy. A similar misconception happened with the emergence of gluten free foods a few years ago.

Go, be healthy and enjoy the rest of Veganuary!

Click here to see our vegan section.

Please let us know if there are any vegan products that you would like us to stock – contact us.