Chris Packham, Joanna Lumley and Venus Williams back Veganuary 2022 and share their favourite plant-based recipes

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AUTHOR: Fiona Holland

A range of national and international celebrities has come together to back Veganuary 2022 – the annual challenge to follow a vegan diet for the whole of January.

The campaign is expanding their reach for the 2022 edition, with India becoming the latest country to join the UK, US, Germany, Chile, Brazil and Argentina in going vegan for 31 days.

The celebrities showing their support for the cause in 2022 include British actress Joanna Lumley, writer and poet Benjamin Zephaniah, investor and Dragons’ Den star Deborah Meaden, primatologist Jane Goodall and naturalist and TV presenter Chris Packham. Other international names include the world-renowned chef Matthew Kenney, tennis star Venus Williams, and musician-turned photographer Bryan Adams.

Joanna Lumley said: “Veganuary’s mission is to make the world a kinder, safer, happier place for all, which makes their January campaign utterly irresistible. I’m in awe of every single person taking part for the climate, our rivers and oceans, forests and wild places, animals and people. You’re all angels.”  

Head of Communications at Veganuary, Toni Vernelli said: “Climate change is at the forefront of everyone’s mind and one key solution is at everyone’s finger-tips – their fork.”  

She added: “Although changing our diets is crucial to cutting greenhouse gas emissions, it can seem daunting. Signing up to Veganuary makes it much easier as our free pledge is full of helpful tips and advice, including a seven-day low carbon meal plan highlighting simple swaps that slash the carbon footprint of classic British dishes.”   

A survey conducted with the participants of Veganuary 2021 showed that after taking part in the campaign, more people were eating less meat. 30% were still following a fully vegan diet, 38% were consuming at least 75% less meat and other animal-based food and drink than before, and 14% were eating 50% less than before.

Over 600,000 people took part in Veganuary this year, which was the largest ever number of participants the campaign had ever seen.

Chris Packham, British Wildlife TV presenter and conservationist said: “To a great extent, the meat industry survives on people’s detachment from the food that they’re buying. If they knew where it had come from and how it was produced in terms of all of the chemicals, all the antibiotics, everything else that’s wrong about this type of industry, meat consumption would drop off straight away.” 

He added: “Trashing the planet does none of us any good, as the coronavirus pandemic shows all too clearly. But we can emerge from this stronger and wiser, with a renewed commitment to protecting the environment, its inhabitants and our own futures. Being vegan is a great way to support the natural world and to live sustainably.” 

The celebrities shared some of their favourite vegan recipes for Veganuary. Take a look at the gallery above and find out how you can make these delicious dishes yourself.

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