Despite record numbers of sign ups to Veganuary this year, brits are still confused about what foods are vegan

New research has revealed the extent to which Brits are unsure when it comes to identifying vegan food – with many popular items being incorrectly labelled.

The survey, commissioned in line with the release of new plant-based recipe book Great British Vegan by Aimee Ryan (@WallflowerKitchen), shows the vegan foods most likely to be incorrectly labelled as non-vegan include custard powder (91% of people surveyed identified this as non-vegan), crumpets (87%) and marmite (82%).

Dark chocolate and peanut butter also feature highly on the list, with 81% and 78% of people labelling these as non-vegan respectively.

After a record number of people signed up to this years’ Veganuary challenge, many Brits are looking for ways to adapt their diets to be more vegan-friendly on a longer-term basis. 39% of survey respondents claimed the thought of not being able to enjoy their favourite foods was holding them back from embracing a vegan diet – so news of these misunderstandings may help a few to feel able to make the change.

Non-vegan foods most likely to be incorrectly identified as vegan include honey (25% identified as vegan-friendly), fresh pasta (23%) and wine (20%).

One in 10 respondents also tagged sweet treats Jaffa Cakes (9%) and marshmallows (9%) as vegan-friendly although they are not.


Custard Powder – 91%
Crumpets – 87%
Marmite – 82%
Dark Chocolate – 81%
Peanut Butter – 78%


Figs – 32%
Dried pasta – 26%
Honey – 25%
Fresh Pasta – 23%
Bread – 22%

Aimee Ryan, author of Great British Vegan said: “It’s so interesting to see these misconceptions around vegan food and the foods that people might think they’re restricted from having when going vegan. When I went vegan in 2014, I was determined not to give up my favourite foods, such as Jaffa Cakes, steak and kidney pie or scones. I created the ‘Great British Vegan’ recipe book, which has plant-based versions of all of these staples, in the hopes that it will show people it’s possible to enjoy comfort foods you love, without using animal products and without compromising on flavour and familiarity.”

Jessica Axe, Publisher at White Lion – publishers of Great British Vegan, said: “The research shows there’s still confusion around veganism, with many viewing it as more restrictive than it is in reality. That’s why we’re delighted to launch ‘Great British Vegan’, showcasing delicious and more accessible versions of everyone’s favourite meals and comfort foods. We hope it spurs even more people towards a vegan diet.”

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