Ria Rehberg in a Veganuary interview – more than just good resolutions
The start of the year … all signs point to a new beginning! And the first month of the new year can be a fascinating expedition into the world of culinary wonders and captivating aha moments. In this article, we explore the origins, development and many inspiring aspects of this movement: VEGANUARY.
And who can give us more insightful information than Ria Rehberg, the director of Veganuary International? We are delighted that she is here to answer our questions about everything you need to know about Veganuary.
And if you’re wondering how Velivery.com will guide you along this exciting path, don’t worry! We are ready to support both experienced vegans and interested flexitarians with a wealth of advice, delicious recipes and irresistible offers to get you through Veganuary.
VELIVERY: Veganuary has become an integral part of our world of healthy, increasingly plant-based nutrition. Not just as the first month of every sustainable year. What is Veganuary?
RIA REHBERG: Veganuary is an international campaign in which millions of people around the world make a joint New Year’s resolution every year. It’s to start the new year vegan – and maybe even stick to it. We are supporting participants with a 31-day email series. It’s easy to sign up at www.veganuary.com/mitmachen. For one month, participants will receive tips on nutrients, meal plans, information on the positive impact of a plant-based diet and everyday recipes. At the same time, as a non-profit organisation, we encourage companies, brands and restaurants to expand their range of plant-based products so that it is easy and uncomplicated to choose alternatives wherever you are.
VELIVERY: How did it all start?
RIA REHBERG: The idea for a purely plant-based New Year’s resolution was born over ten years ago in the UK. Our two founders Jane Land and Matthew Glover launched the first Veganuary campaign via Facebook in 2014, with 3,300 people taking part at the time. Today, the hashtag #veganuary reaches hundreds of millions of people in January – by the end of the month in 2023, it had 894 million views on TikTok alone.
VELIVERY: What is the motivation behind the idea of Veganuary?
RIA REHBERG: We want to get people excited about the vegan diet in an uncomplicated, simple and humorous way because we are convinced that this is how we can reach the most people and make a difference together. Behind this is a great vision – a vegan world in which animals do not suffer for our consumption, a food system that treats our planet and its resources with care. There is a simple way to achieve this: a vegan diet. This is also the focus of our 2024 campaign – plants are simply the first choice for our future.
VELIVERY: You run Veganuary International. What is your heartfelt concern?
RIA REHBERG: I sincerely hope that more and more people will realise the connection between the food on our plates and the health of our planet and its inhabitants. We all have the opportunity to take action against climate change, save animal lives and protect our health at the same time – simply by putting more healthy, plant-based food on our plates. It’s a small daily change that can have a huge impact on a mass scale.
VELIVERY: What offers does Veganuary have in store for the growing community? And is this only possible in January?
RIA REHBERG: We support the community all year round. In addition to our email series, which you can sign up to at any time, our website and social media channels provide facts about vegan nutrition, recipes, inspiring stories from our supporters, tips on new plant-based products and much more throughout the year. In spring and summer, there are other campaigns with a seasonal focus, such as #VeganuaryBBQ: This is where we show how diverse and delicious plant-based barbecues are, talk about the benefits for the environment and health – and encourage the food industry to focus on vegan alternatives.
VELIVERY: Plant-based nutrition is becoming increasingly popular and is also appealing to more and more flexitarians. How do you see this development?
RIA REHBERG: A lot has changed in recent years: A plant-based diet has long since ceased to be a niche topic and is much more than just a trend. The majority of Germans, namely 56 per cent, already describe themselves as vegan, vegetarian or flexitarian. They are all consciously opting for more plant-based options. At the same time, meat consumption in Germany is falling. This shows that more and more people are thinking about the impact their diet has on their own health, the climate and animals. And the economy is responding accordingly to the growing demand for vegan products. So the change is in full swing – we are working to strengthen and accelerate it.
VELIVERY: What is special about Veganuary 2024?
RIA REHBERG: We have lots of great news about Veganuary 2024: Stefanie Giesinger, Lena Meyer-Landrut and Maria Clara Groppler are among the new celebrity supporters of our campaign. Another highlight is that our first official Veganuary cookbook is now available in bookshops: Our international team has lovingly compiled over 100 recipes from all over the world that will see you through the year and everyday life.
VELIVERY: That sounds exciting. Is there anything else you would like to give people for these Veganuary weeks and beyond?
RIA REHBERG: For all those who may still have doubts or are not sure whether they want to or can get through a vegan month, I would like to share the results of our survey with last year’s participants. Around half of the participants said afterwards that they already felt better after just one month of a vegan diet. Almost three quarters said that they would either stop eating animal products altogether or significantly reduce their consumption after their vegan month and one of our most common responses is that participants found the transition easier than they originally thought! And from my own experience, I can also say that switching to vegan was one of the best decisions of my life and I very much hope that many more people will be able to enjoy this diet!
VELIVERY: Thank you very much for the interview.
Rapid development & celebrity challenge
Does that make you want to join in? In actual fact Veganuary fascinates everyone – even celebrities. Since its foundation, Veganuary has gained enormous momentum and is popular worldwide. People from over 190 countries have become part of this global phenomenon. Millions have taken up the challenge to experience a vegan January. If you haven’t taken part yet, you’ve definitely missed out –Here are some examples.
Even the renowned Michelin-starred chef and meat gourmet Gordon Ramsay dedicated himself to the vegan lifestyle for a month during a Veganuary. He shared his experiences with his millions of fans on social media, which shows that even experienced meat fans are convinced by vegan cuisine, even if only for one month a year.
And Gordon is in good company. In recent years, Veganuary has attracted numerous celebrities both from Germany and internationally. Among the German stars who have taken up the challenge are the well-known singer Lena Meyer-Landrut, the actor and environmental activist Hannes Jaenicke and the successful presenter Barbara Schöneberger. By taking part in Veganuary, they have raised public awareness of the benefits of a vegan lifestyle. Everyone wants to take part in the Veganuary challenge, and more and more people are joining in enthusiastically.
Of course, Veganuary has also inspired an impressive list of celebrities internationally. These include singer and actress Miley Cyrus, known for her commitment to animal rights and environmental protection, and British comedian and actor Simon Amstell, who became famous for his vegan views and his documentary film on the subject. In addition, well-known musician and vegan Paul McCartney, actress Natalie Portman, known for her passionate support of the vegan lifestyle, and actor and animal rights activist Joaquin Phoenix, honoured for his role in ‘Joker’, have also joined the initiative. The participation of these stars in Veganuary shows not only their personal conviction, but also how central the issue has become in our society.
Veganuary – not only unicorns have fun with it
KCreativity and humour are also part of vegan January. So, we want to invite you to celebrate your own private Veganuary challenge with your circle of friends, where the fun factor should not be missing. Because we want to keep things light and breezy. We want to experience the joy of shared feasts, vegan style 😉
The internationally famous mythical unicorn burger is a good example of Veganuary creativity: during a Veganuary, a burger restaurant created the ‘unicorn burger’, made from purely plant-based ingredients and with colourful bread, vegan patty and special ‘unicorn sauce’. This creative burger created such a buzz on social media, demonstrated the versatility of vegan cuisine and sold out after a few minutes every day. As you can see, there’s no limit to the imagination …
Here are five inspiring ideas for your Veganuary:
- Eat colourfully: Try to eat a variety of colourful foods. How many colours can you manage?
- Cooking adventure: Experiment with vegan recipes and become a chef. Vegan dishes can be found all over the world.
- Strong together: Join a Veganuary group and share the love with others. Give and get tips.
- Animal voyage of discovery: Expand your knowledge about animals and animal rights. Travel with your Veganuary team to an animal sanctuary and hear the stories of rescued animals from the industry.
- Stay on the ball: Persevering despite challenges is worthwhile for your health, the environment and the animals. You can do it; we’re here for you.
By the way, we would be very interested to hear what creative Veganuary ideas you have … 🙂
What makes Veganuary so special?
There are countless reasons to embrace vegan January. Here are some of the most compelling arguments for those in your circle of friends:
- Eco-rocker: A vegan lifestyle is a gift to the environment. No animal husbandry, less CO2 … It’s like playing the lead role at an environmental concert!
- Health trendsetter: Being part of a trend that promotes your health is not only cool, but also smart. Veganism can have a positive impact on your life expectancy and well-being – become a health guru!
- Animal love: Who would have thought that loving animals could be so delicious? With Veganuary, you actively support the welfare of our furry friends.
- Culinary world tour: Discover the infinite variety of vegan cuisine and become a culinary globetrotter.
- Solidarity and community: Veganuary unites people worldwide who are committed to sustainability and ethics. Together we can make a difference!
Veganuary at Velivery.com – a heartfelt matter
We have expertise in providing you with the best tips and tricks for this exciting month. That’s why we’re doing something every day at Veganuary, just like an advent calendar:
– Veganuary hacks: Our specialists have put together the best vegan survival tips and tricks for you.
– Delicious recipes: Our recipes are so tempting that you’ll completely forget about meat and dairy products!
– Irresistible offers: We have tantalising offers on vegan products to enrich your Veganuary experience. – And you’ll be amazed at the sponsor who we have managed to get on board for Veganuary 2024 … Veganuary at Velivery: Music to the ears. 🙂
New Year’s resolutions were yesterday, today it’s Veganuary
Resolutions can be fleeting and tedious. But this year is different, thanks to Veganuary. This is not a boring ‘you could do it’, but a journey of indulgence and flavour. Leave the monotonous resolutions behind and dive into a colourful and delicious new world! Let’s start this adventure together and make the world a little better with a smile and a vegan treat in hand. Happy Veganuary 2024!