People from across the city are ditching the meat and dairy in an attempt to go vegan for the whole of January as part of a global campaign aiming to reduce the suffering of animals.

As we leave the gluttony of Christmas behind, many of us are beginning our annual post festivities diet, but this year there is a twist for some.

What does a vegan diet consist of?

• Nothing that derives from an animal (meat, fish, dairy, eggs, honey)
• Grains and pulses
• Fruit and vegetables
• Soy based products (tofu, milk, beans and meat substitutes)

There has been Dry January, Stoptober and even Movember but now people are taking on Veganuary and trying to stick to a vegan diet for the whole of this month.

The campaign was launched in the UK back in 2014 aiming to change public attitudes towards veganism and has gained global support in a very short period of time.

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PICTURE: The non-profit organisation’s website

Veganism has seen a huge growth in popularity in recent years and you can even find a number of vegan cafés and shops scattered across Nottingham.

The Bluebird vegan café and wholefood shop in Sherwood sells everything from meat alternatives through to vegan cosmetics and have seen a rise in interest this month.

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PICTURE: Bluebird Wholefoods in Sherwood, Nottingham.

Adrian Bhagat, who owns the shop, said: “We had a new years event and there was some people there who were going vegan on that day so it was a good start to the year for them.

“We’ve also had quite a few people coming in for advice on what they can can’t eat as they are trying it for January. Hopefully they will stick to it beyond this month,” he added.

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PICTURE: Bluebird Wholefoods shelves stacked with all vegan produce

“People think vegans are weird hippies, but were not.”
Adrian bhagat, Bluebird vegan café and shop

As a nation of mostly meat lovers, Mr Bhagat believes there are plenty of common misconceptions surrounding veganism.

“People think vegans are weird hippies, but were not – We are a wide range of people who are all over the place,” he said.

“Many think that vegans can’t actually eat anything when actually you can eat a very wide diet and you can make really interesting and tasty dishes,” he said.

Francesca Thomas-Wiseman, from Nottingham, who has been a vegan for four years, believes it is not an easy life-style choice.

“Don’t look at it as a daunting fact. You have to take it day by day and meal planning and prep are the most important things.

“Write a list before you go shopping so you know what you are going to be cooking each night and also freezing meals in advance is very helpful,” she said.

AUDIO: Francesca talks about her experience of being a vegan. 

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