Veganuary 2018 initial results

Some of you may know I’m an analyst at work and love a bit of number crunching so I always look forward to seeing the stats come out after Veganuary and this year is no different, so let’s take a look!

Its great to see the overall participation increase year on year and a massive 183% increase on 2017! This only accounts for the people who sign up on https://veganuary.com so I am sure there are many others who take part every year without signing up.

It’s also nice to see people’s motivation for trying Veganuary, but whatever the reason the animals and the planet benefit from it! 79,000 were omnivores so that’s a huge number going cold tofurkey for the month!

Younger people lead the way as expected, but my age range of 25 – 34 are slightly leading the pack ahead of the 18 – 24 whippersnappers and the 35 – 44 crew don’t seem far behind them.

Women seem to be leading the way again with 84% of participants but men have increased to 14% from 10% in 2017. I think this is in part due to women more likely to sign up to the website so there may be quite a few more men taking part, they just aren’t in the official figure.

The dairy industry tried to hit back with their #februdairy campaign but as these search stats (courtesy of @vegandon on Twitter) show it paled in comparison.

So there you have it. I’m looking forward to seeing the six month results and how many people decided to stick with it. With all the options now available it just gets easier and easier to transition to veganism.

Did you take part in Veganuary this year? How did it go? Or are you a veteran of Veganuary and still going strong? Let me know in the comments below.

Plumes x

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Veganuary 2018 initial results

Vegan Activism January 2018

I’ve really kicked 2018 to a great start in January with attending some fantastic activism events.

I’ve taken part in two Earthlings Experiences with Havering Vegan Action. We take to the streets of Romford for two hours on Friday nights and plant lots of seeds by showing farm and slaughterhouse footage and talking to people about their food options.

I took part in my first Chelmsford Cube of Truth with their chapter of Anonymous for the Voiceless. We now have four chapters locally, Chelmsford, Southend, Basildon and Romford. Basildon’s first event is taking part on 4th February and Romford’s first event takes part on the 11th February. I like taking part in these events as you can swap from showing footage to doing outreach speaking to people. We usually speak to around 70 people when we do these events and it’s great to see more and more chapters popping up to spread the message.

I attended my first Essex Pig Save which I wrote about here.

And lastly tonight I attended the protest at the annual Great British Greyhound Board awards organised by CAGED, I wrote about last year’s event here. There was a great turnout and luckily it wasn’t raining this year. I hope to attend more events at my local greyhound track this year and see more stadiums across the country close down.

So let’s see how I get on in February.

If you are interested in taking part in activism events I would recommend you have a look at events in your area on Facebook. If you have any questions ask away in the comments below.

Plumes x

Vegan Activism January 2018

Essex Pig Save

This week I took part in my first vigil outside a slaughterhouse with Essex Pig Save. The Save Movement started in Toronto and there was a famous case where an activist was arrested for giving one of the pigs some water. There are now chapters all over the world and many in the UK. Essex Pig Save hold vigils outside Cheale Meats in West Horden monthly. Obviously animals are sent to slaughterhouses every weekday but with most of the activists working or studying full time most have limited free time in the week to attend these vigils.

I attended with my friend Charlie who I met through activism and she gave me the low down on what happens. Lauren, one of the organisers gave us newbies an introductions to the proceedings.

The slaughterhouse is on a country road so there is no pavement and we have to be very careful regarding traffic. The police are present with a couple of officers and a police liaison officer. They are given a schedule of when the trucks carrying the pigs are expected to arrive and ask the trucks to stop for two minutes so the activists can bear witness to the animals and collect footage. After each truck enters the slaughterhouse a two minutes silence is held along the border of the property. We also hold up signs so passing cars can see why we are there.

We saw around 11 trucks go in on this particular morning. Some pigs were in better condition than others, the worse having terrible skin with lots of scratches over their bodies. Some were larger and older and some were smaller and younger. Some were ghostly quiet whilst others were inquisitive coming up to the bars to see us.

Some pigs had rings in their noses. The nose of a pig is very sensitive and they use it to explore their surroundings, by putting a ring in it, which is not only painful when it is done, it means the pig is prevented from displaying natural behaviours.

When I decided to attend this vigil I wasn’t sure how it was going to affect me. Understandably many activists get upset when they see the pigs in the trucks or from the noises we hear them make when they are entering the facility. I was glad I didn’t feel too overwhelmed and I know I will be back. I think it helped having other activists I already knew there. Everybody is very welcoming and supportive of eachother.

Photo credit – Charlie Gunner

If you are coming from the station you can message the Facebook event and someone will come and bring you back to the site.

I would encourage anybody to take part in a vigil if you are able to. It really strengthens your connection to the animals and your conviction in your activism. If you have any questions on the subject please ask in the comments below.

Plumes x

Essex Pig Save

Animal Aid Christmas without Cruelty 2017

On Sunday I attended the 25th (can you believe?!) Animal Aid Christmas without Cruelty fayre at Kensington town hall. I have been attending this event ever since I became vegan 5 years ago and I think it’s my favourite event of the year. The atmosphere is very relaxed and you get the opportunity to really talk to the stallholders. I also bumped into a few familiar faces which was really nice starting with Polly and Phil from LDN vegans who have also posted a video about the event on their YouTube channel. I had arranged to meet my Sister-in-law and as we arrived at lunchtime we needed some fuel before we hit the stalls! We both went for lasagne with salad which was nice and hot and full of veg to balance out the snackage we were about to partake in!

Here is a pic of my little haul and I’ll talk through everything I picked up.

My favourite chocolate ever has to be Solkiki. I have previously interviewed their founder Bob when I reviewed their chocolate earlier in the year here. I could listen to Bob talk about chocolate all day long and I was pleased to try some of their new flavours. I bought their peanut and coffee bar and their bright pink raspberry bar which I’m going to try and make as long as possible! 
My Husband’s favourite cake of late is Battenburg and as I’d rather him have a vegan version than Mr Kipling’s I picked him some up from The Vegan Cakery. I’ve had their cakes multiple times in the past and they are always delicious.

I bought a vegan take on a pork pie made with beetroot and a smoked houmous centre, wowzers was this good! I scoffed it with my lunch today and I wish I had another for tomorrow!

I also picked up some cakes from The May Bakery who I was previously unaware of. I picked up a carrot cake and black forest Viennese whirl which I enjoyed with a cup of coffee later in the evening. These really hot the spot and I’ll be seeking them out at future events.

I also picked up a couple of bits for my Sister-in-law’s Christmas presents that she picked out. A fab pair of dog socks from Greek Animal Rescue and a T-shirt from Black Star (don’t worry I also have a couple of surprise presents for her!)

Last but by no means least we have the obligatory Lush bath bombs but this time we got to make them ourselves and they were free! It was great fun making them and even better it was a free gift!

I spoke to the lovely owner of Greenscents who really sold his products and company, they are natural and organic cleaning products. I’m stocked up at the moment but I was interested to hear they are available at Ocado where I usually get my shopping from. Here’s some more information from their literature.

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Another great T-shirt company were Simple Animal and I really commend you check out their designs on their website.

I’ve been thinking about where to get my next trainers from once I wear out my current ones so I was interested to see Freet which are supposed to help you feet move more naturally, it’s my birthday in February so these might be going on my list!

We tried some delicious chutneys from Cheeky Food Co and some sprinkles my Sister-in-law tried on her soup, I’ll definitely be checking these out to go with my vegan cheese at Christmas.

I also bumped into Ian from The Vegan Option. I met Ian many moons ago at a London Vegan drinks event. Ian presents a podcast which charts the history of veganism, I’m a few episodes in and I’d definitely recommend you give it a listen.

Did you attend the fayre? Did you get any great treats, eats or Christmas presents? Are you planning on going to any other vegan Christmas fayres in the next couple of weeks? Let me know in the comments below.

Plumes x

Animal Aid Christmas without Cruelty 2017

Canada Goose = Animal Abuse

On Thursday Canada Goose opened their flagship London store on Regents Street so today about 400 of us showed them how welcome they are!

Photo credit – Vegan Blogger 78
Photo credit – Vegan Blogger 78

You can search the atrocities that go on to make these costs but it basically involves pulling feathers from live birds repeatedly and trapping cayotes for periods on time so they struggle and can become dehydrated before the hunters come and to shot them so their future can trim these fashion items.

It’s not fashion it’s violence.

Plumes x

Canada Goose = Animal Abuse

Vegfest London 2017


I wasn’t planning on going to Vegfest London this year but when my Sister-in-law Gemma suggested we go I thought why not? Unfortunately we had missed the boat for the BOGOF tickets so after booking and transaction fees we paid about £14 each which I thought was a bit steep and more than I’ve paid for other vegan events. We’ll have to be more organised next time!

After the hour and half journey from East London to Kensington Olympia we arrived at 2pm and were very hungry! We headed to the food village and had a look around. There were quite a few stalls I have visited at past events but a couple caught my eye. I was interested in Dutch Weed Burger but as we’re off to Amsterdam next week I’ll save that for the authentic experience! The other stall that interested me that I hadn’t seen before was Greek Vegan Deli and their Halloumi wraps.



The Halloumi was made with tofu and the texture was spot on! I think it could have been a bit saltier but overall I was really impressed.


We stopped at the Essex Pig Save stand who are an organisation who organise vigils outside local slaughterhouses and are part of the global Save Movement which originated in Toronto. We also listened to a talk about the Save Movement later in the day.



I bought some pig earring to support the group so after my Hunt Sabatours pawprint earrings these are my second activist earrings!


I’ve featured Vida Bakery multiple times on this blog and that’s because they’re blooming amazing! This time I went for their Oreo brownie to take home and share with my Husband.



I also picked up a peanut butter mini loaf from Ruby’s of London for us to share which was gorgeous.


Another cake stall that looked fabulous was Cupcakes and Shhht and I look forward to trying their wares in the future.



My Sister-in-law picked up some Vegenaise from the Follow your heart stand and I went for their cheese shreds for pizza which were discounted from their RRP of £4.49 to £2, bargain! Our friends managed to snag the last Vegenaise and told us they had sold over 400 jars that day!


I picked up this peanut bar from Perkier after trying some tasty samples for 70p.


I wanted to buy some vegan clothing, but as I’m trying to buy as few brand new clothes as possible I wanted something that was really useful and I would get a lot of wear out of so I went for this sports bra and crop top for when I’m running from Vegan Rex.



When we entered we were given a copy of Vegan Life Magazine and I was pleased to see it was the current issue!


Lastly there was a display of vegan art which was really lovely to see.



Did you go to Vegfest London? What were your highlights? Let me know in the comments below.

Plumes x

Vegfest London 2017

FRIEND Farmed Animal Rescue

I first visited FRIEND Animal Rescue last year on one of their open days (which I blogged about here). They have a lovely site near Maidstone in Kent which just happens to be about half way between my house and my relatives on the South Coast, so Mama Plumes and I met up with my Cousins and their 10 week old baby son.

Here’s an excerpt from FRIENDS website about what they do (as I couldn’t say it better myself)

WHAT WE DO

Today, FRIEND is a working animal sanctuary with around 100 farm animals and companion animals. Animals find their way here in all sorts of ways. Some are rescued from places of abuse, some arrive following the death of their guardian. Some despicable people abandon their animals by throwing them over the fence. No matter how they get here, they are all welcome to live the rest of their lives as naturally as possible with little human interaction.

We offer a no kill, free roaming (as far as possible and safe) home to cows, sheep, goats, chickens, ducks, geese and turkeys. Our 30+ pigs live in their own paddock with wallows. Some of our cats are feral and some are house dwellers. All our dogs love their walks in our meadow.

It was lovely to see these animals roaming free and getting so close to them. Some of the pigs were very friendly and came up for a stroke and a nuzzle. I particularly love cows, so I was glad to be able to go in the field with them as this wasn’t possible last year.

Some of the animals are shyer, like the sheep and the llama so we just let them do their thing and admired them from afar. Some, like the goats, enjoyed very much getting in everybody’s business especially if you had some food on you!

We also enjoyed some fab vegan food, Mum and I had bean stew and potato and I had a piece of gorgeous carrot cake with a mug of tea.

Spending time with animals really re-iterates to me why I’m vegan and inspires me to continue participating in vegan activism events.

FRIEND have open days and volunteer days throughout the year so check out their Facebook page to keep up with events. If you aren’t able to visit you can donate to FRIEND via their website.

Here’s a few photos of our day.

Plumes x

FRIEND Farmed Animal Rescue