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Veganuary, climate meat labels and harmful nitrites

Veganuary is a global non-profit organisation encouraging people to switch to a vegan diet for the year’s first month. When the initiative was launched in 2014, 3,000 people participated. A total of 610,000 people worldwide took up the 2022 challenge. The organisation promotes the transition to veganism as a way to “protect the environment, prevent animal suffering and improve the health of millions of people”.

According to a study by US researchers from Johns Hopkins University and Harvard University, consumers are more likely to refrain from buying carbon-intensive foods, such as red meat, if they find information on the packaging about the product’s negative environmental impact. Compared to participants in the control group, 23.5% more participants chose a sustainable menu item when it contained information about the high negative climate impact of the products. In contrast, a product whose label informed about the low climate impact of its production was chosen by 9.9% more participants.

According to the results of an experiment  According to the results of an experiment by researchers at Queen’s University Belfast, mice fed with processed meat containing chemicals used to cure bacon and give it its characteristic pink colour developed 75% more cancerous tumours than mice fed with nitrite-free pork. They also developed 82% more tumours in the intestine than in the control group. Around 90% of bacon sold in the UK contains nitrites, which previous studies have linked to colorectal, breast and prostate cancer development.

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