Vegan campaign group, Viva!, released an ad encouraging shoppers to ditch meat and eat a cruelty-free diet. The ad has enraged meat-eaters and created a lot of controversy. 

The ad aired last Monday and shows a couple and their dog lounging on the couch. The couple decides to order takeout from the fictional app ‘Just Meat.’ They decide on pulled pork, and shortly after, a delivery man arrives at the door with a live pig and a meat cleaver. The couple looks confused and disgusted.

Viva! said the ad features a pet dog to encourage viewers to see the connection between the animals they choose as pets and the animals they choose to eat. They hope it will inspire consumers to make a change in their lifestyles to a cruelty-free diet.

Viva! Founder and director Juliet Gellatley said:

“Most people in the UK despise cruelty to animals, yet simply don’t make the connection between animal cruelty and what is on their plate. If we can encourage people to think about what they consume, at a time when delicious vegan alternatives are widely available, we can play a part – on a national scale – in helping to change mindsets and save animals.”

The ad has caused an uproar amongst meat-eaters online.

Viva! itself has agreed that the 30-second video is ‘controversial.’ 

“To be a catalyst for change we recognise that we must stay ahead of the curve with our messaging, to have the biggest impact and reach as many people as possible. By broadcasting our first ever vegan TV advert on mainstream television, we’re hopeful we can give veganism the airtime it needs!” said Gellatley. 

“In addition to the shocking brutality forced upon animals farmed for food, the animal agriculture industry is wreaking havoc across our planet. It is the leading driver of wildlife loss and releases more greenhouse gases than the entire world’s transport sector.”

A recent study found that students who took a class on meat ethics and learned how factory farms produce meat were extremely likely to cut down meat consumption. If this video has shock value for viewers, it’s doing its intended job. In order to make a change, we need to open our eyes to what is happening throughout the meat industry and learn where our food is truly coming from.

In January 2021, there were approximately 79 million vegans in the world, still only covering 1% of the global population. However, if the popularity of the lifestyle continues to grow, it is predicted that within the next 10 years, 1 in 10 people will be vegan.

With the wide range of vegan and plant-based meat alternatives, there’s never been an easier time to transform your life and stop eating meat. Between 2019 and 2020, the plant-based meat industry increased by $430 million, making it worth $1.4 billion.

Sign this petition to ban factory farming.

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