ProVeg kicks 2022 and Veganuary off with a bang
January 6, 2022
ProVeg South Africa exploded into the new year with a host of celebrations and, with it, welcomed Veganuary, the month-long challenge to inspire people to try a vegan lifestyle for the entire month of January.
With a Veganuary launch event at Lexi’s Healthy Eatery in Sea Point and eight vegan dinners across Cape Town along with the Cape Town Vegan himself, Garth Tavares, January promises to be a vegan-friendly month the Mother City won’t soon forget.
It all started at the end of a long and tiresome 2021 when several ProVeg ambassadors came together at Lexi’s Healthy Eatery for a night of celebration – of veganism, good food, great company, and a supportive community making the best decisions for humans, animals and the planet.
The evening was also an opportunity to announce the publication of a cookbook by chef Jay McNamara, creator of The Kind Kitchen. Those in attendance were ecstatic to hear that the cookbook of the same name will be available from early 2022.
“It’s always so cool to see everybody in this community because the community is constantly growing,” Chef Jay said. “So well done to all of you [bloggers and influencers] for doing all the good work you are doing.”
The Cape Town Vegan, Garth Tavares, also spoke about the eight Veganuary dinner parties taking place in January across the greater Cape Town area.
“I had the idea to approach one or two restaurants for Veganuary just to get people together again. We all know how much restaurants need our support, how many have closed, how many have tried to open, how many have tried to rebrand themselves during these times and it is incredibly difficult. The idea is to host eight separate dining events across the month of January every Wednesday and Saturday from the 5th to the 29th of January.”
These events are as follow:
- Wednesday 5 January: LEXI’S Sea Point
- Sat 8 January: MARY ANN’S EMPORIUM Somerset West
- Wed 12 January: THE CONSCIOUS KITCHEN Observatory
- Sat 15 January: GRUMPY & RUNT Gardens
- Wed 19 January: VEGAN STREETFOOD Observatory
- Sat 22 January: INFINITE CAFÉ City Centre
- Wed 26 January: BLUE KIWI Simon’s Town
- Sat 29 January: THE FUSSY VEGAN Gardens
Garth explains that all eight restaurants have joined without the objective to make any profit from these events. All profits from these events will go to ProVeg South Africa to promote Veganuary.
ProVeg South Africa country director, Donovan Will, explained why ProVeg has chosen to be the local partner for Veganuary.
“Veganuary is a hugely successful way to get people to eat less meat. And it is pretty obvious why. It’s giving people an email every day, reminding them of something that they said they wanted to do and giving them tips and advice. When people sign up for Veganuary and they go to one of our corporate partners or one of our sponsors and they see the Veganaury branding, they remember that.
“As Garth mentioned, [ProVeg South Africa] isn’t taking any of the money. We are taking all the money we make from ticket sales, fundraising, and from our corporate partners and putting 100% of it into promoting Veganuary.”
Nanine Wyma, ProVeg South Africa’s Programmes Manager, also shared interesting statistics about Veganuary.
“There are two parts to Veganuary. There is the part that supports people wanting to go Vegan or continue learning about veganism and get new recipes. That is the email campaign you sign up for. And the other part is the food services part, looking at the food industry and how are they making veganism more accessible during January for everyone that wants to try vegan. So Veganuary also tracks how many new products are launched and in 2021 the campaign globally had over 850 new products and new menu items. So it really does influence the food industry to make vegan more accessible.”
And after an eventful night, they did not go home with happy stomachs alone – each ambassador was spoiled with a hamper containing products from several brands supporting Veganuary. These brands include Crumb, B-well, Oatly, Okja, The Kind Kitchen, Wellness Warehouse, Checkers, Mary-Ann’s Natural Emporium, On The Greenside, Almond Breeze, Gaia & I, Red Espresso, and Kauai.
What is Veganuary?
Veganuary is a non-profit organisation that encourages people worldwide to try a vegan diet and lifestyle during January and, hopefully, beyond. Veganuary also encourages and supports people and businesses to move to a plant-based diet as a way of protecting the environment, preventing animal suffering, and improving the health of millions of people.
Veganuary inspired more than half a million people to try a vegan lifestyle during their 2021 campaign – with participants from over 200 countries and territories.
Veganuary in South Africa
Veganism has gained popularity in South Africa in recent years, with several successful vegan restaurants popping up across the country. Some of our national fast-food chains have also joined the movement, including meat-free options on their menus. There is also a vast selection of delicious plant-based foods already available in South Africa, including an ever-growing range of affordable alternatives to animal products, such as meat, eggs, and milk.
You can also choose a low-cost, whole-foods plant-based lifestyle with everyday grocery store items. A vegan lifestyle is accessible to everyone, during Veganuary and beyond.
International backers of Veganuary also continue to grow with New York Mayor Eric Adams, world-renowned chef Matthew Kenney, and Dragon Den’s Deborah Meaden joining the campaign this year. Tennis legend Venus Williams, Game of Thrones actress Bella Ramsey, singer Bryan Adams, and primatologist and anthropologist Jane Goodall have all donated their favourite vegan recipes to Veganuary’s 2022 cookbook. All participants of Veganuary will receive this digital cookbook, daily recipes, tips and other resources to assist them throughout the month.