Ireland was ranked as the 10th most popular country for veganism for 2020.

Chef’s Pencil, a food magazine for culinary industry professionals, has released its annual report on the most popular countries and cities for veganism.

The study used Google Trends data to analyze search interest levels for veganism across the world.

According to the report, vegan-related searches were at an all-time high in 2020, surpassing interest in 2019. The data indicate that veganism is twice as popular as it was five years ago.

Ireland landed in the number 10 spot worldwide for veganism and ranked number 6 in Europe. This marks the third consecutive year that Ireland ranks in the top 10 worldwide. The report showed that the cities in Ireland with the most vegans were Galway, Dublin, and Cork.

According to a 2019 Wellwoman Vegan study, 49 percent of Irish people said they would go vegan for environmental and ethical reasons, while 37 percent said they would change to a vegan diet permanently. 

The UK ranked number one on the list, followed by Australia and Israel. The U.S. landed at number 12.

Top countries for veganism in 2020:

1.        United Kingdom (Popularity Score: 100)
2.        Australia (Popularity Score: 87)
3.        Israel (Popularity Score: 84)
4.        Austria (Popularity Score: 82)
5.        New Zealand (Popularity Score: 81)
6.        Germany (Popularity Score: 77)
7.        Sweden (Popularity Score: 68)
8.        Switzerland (Popularity Score: 65)
9.        Canada (Popularity Score: 64)
10.      Ireland  (Popularity Score: 63)
11.      Netherlands (Popularity Score: 58 )
12.      United States (Popularity Score: 56)
13.      Denmark (Popularity Score: 51)
14.      Finland (Popularity Score: 49)
15.      Chile (Popularity Score: 44)

Rise of veganism in Ireland

The popularity of veganism in Ireland has been steadily increasing over the past decade. According to a survey conducted by Ipsos MRBI in 2019, approximately 4% of the Irish population identifies as vegan. This is a significant increase from previous years and highlights a shift towards plant-based diets.

The increase in veganism can be attributed to a number of factors, including concerns about animal welfare, environmental impact, and health benefits. Social media and the internet have also played a significant role in the promotion and awareness of veganism, making it more accessible and appealing to a wider audience.

Benefits of a plant-based diet

A plant-based diet is a diet that is based on fruits, vegetables, legumes, whole grains, and nuts, and excludes animal products such as meat, dairy, and eggs. This type of diet has been linked to numerous health benefits, including a lower risk of heart disease, diabetes, and certain types of cancer. Additionally, a plant-based diet is often higher in fiber, which can help with weight management and digestion.

Moreover, plant-based diets have a lower carbon footprint and can reduce the environmental impact of animal agriculture, which is a significant contributor to greenhouse gas emissions, water pollution, and deforestation.

You can find the full report on the Chef's Pencil website here.

* Originally published in 2020, updated in March 2023.