Vegetarian has long been something Americans were familiar with, even if it wasn’t nearly as widespread as it is today. Heck, even famous historical figures like Albert Einstein, Benjamin Franklin, Thomas Edison, Henry Ford, and Leonardo Da Vinci were vegetarian (of course, the diet became much more mainstream in the 60s and 70s).
However, veganism developed much later, especially as factory farming became more mainstream. But with notable celebrities and politicians like Bill Clinton, Andre 3000, “Athlete of the Century” Carl Lewis, Mike Tyson, Bryan Adams, and others going vegan, as well as much broader awareness of the horrors of factory farming (and livestock production in general) and of the climate costs of livestock production, more and more people are going vegan. Of course, more and more people are learning about veganism, too. For example, check out this animation of Google searches for the term “vegan” over the past several years:
While searches have been on the rise, meat consumption has been decreasing for a few years now, even chicken consumption, which had been on the rise for years while beef consumption continuously declined since 1976 or so. Here’s a bit on projections for 2013 from the creator of the graph below:
“Per capita chicken consumption is projected to drop by more than 8% in 2013 compared to the peak reached in 2006. During this same period, per capita beef consumption is projected to drop by about 17%. The per capita pork consumption is projected to drop by almost 11% since a recent peak in 2007 and the per capita turkey consumption is projected to drop by more than 9% since a recent peak in 2008.”
All good news.
And then there’s stuff like this: