London – London has been named the most vegan-friendly city in the world for the fourth year in a row.
This is very good news for the 60,000 Kiwis who call London home which is a popular destination for many Kiwis heading overseas.
Culturally, the UK’s largest city is pretty similar to home which isn’t surprising given that 80 percent of New Zealanders have some British ancestry.
The 2022 Top 10 Vegan-Friendly Cities guide comes from plant-based restaurant platform HappyCow.
It’s the first to be released since before the covid pandemic and comes as part of its world vegan month celebrations.
Following London on the top vegan cities list is Berlin with New York third, and Melbourne fourth.
Cities were considered against a number of criteria, including the number of vegan restaurants within 10km of the city centre. In addition, the number of fully vegan businesses such as shops and bakeries, perceived overall growth, and how active the plant-based communities are was also taken into consideration.
The HappyCow Top 10 Vegan-Friendly Cities, in order, are:
New York City
London has more than 400 fully vegan establishments. In addition to a plethora of eateries, it has seen an explosion of new shops, events, and businesses. These include artisan non-dairy cheesemakers and meat-free butchers, which have helped take the London vegan experience to new levels.
Berlin and New York have switched positions since 2019’s list. This could be due to Germany’s overall meat consumption reduction.
Efforts to lower meat intake have seen the average yearly consumption drop from 138 pounds of animal protein to 121. This marks a reduction of 12.3 percent per person. The number of vegans in Germany has also doubled to 2.6 million between 2016 and 2020.
However, New York is taking steps to promote veganism. It was recently announced that all city hospitals will now serve vegan food as the default option. It comes alongside more than 1700 New York district schools participating in Vegan Fridays, which sees children given access to healthy plant-based foods.
Amsterdam, Barcelona, Melbourne, and Singapore join the Top 10 as new entries, knocking out Portland, Prague, Tel Aviv, and Toronto.
It is thought that an influx of new vegan businesses in each of the newly listed cities is the reason for their change in fortunes. Amsterdam, in particular, has seen a 78 percent increase in fully vegan companies over the last three years, according to HappyCow. Demonstrating similar growth, Barcelona has reportedly seen a 74 percent jump.
Melbourne has been a traditionally meat-focused location. Jumping onto the list in fourth place, the city demonstrates the mindset shift that is happening in Australia right now. It’s also confirmation that more than half 55 percent of Australians and New Zealanders want to see increased access to vegan food in restaurants.
HappyCow’s founder Eric Brent says after a major drop in 2019-2021, the growth of vegan restaurants worldwide continues again at an even faster rate than we experienced in 2019.