Prime Minister Boris Johnson addressed rumours during a BBC Breakfast interview on Monday that he would be participating in Veganuary this year to deny the claims saying he would not be going vegan because it means giving up cheese.
When asked by interviewer Dan Walker if he would be taking part, he said: “No, I’m not, no I’m not. I had thought of it – but it requires so much concentration.”
While Johnson tipped his “hat off to vegans who can handle it, who can manage to avoid non-vegan products,” he added that eating vegan was “a crime against cheese lovers.”
Walker asked the prime minister whether it was because he would miss bacon sandwiches, to which he replied: “The whole lot”.
“I mean, you can’t eat cheese, can you, if you’re a vegan?” Johnson asked.
The Prime Minister’s comments have caused a stir on social media with one user saying: “Boris Johnson says he considered going vegan for January but decided against it because it ‘requires so much concentration’…. (Just a reminder that he’s the Prime Minister!).”
Johnson has also been mocked for his pronunciation of the word ‘vegan’, which he sometimes said as ‘vee-gan’, that saw users flock online to share their thoughts.
One user said: “The way Boris Johnson says Vegan makes me giggle. ‘Vee-gan’ like an alien species,” whilst another agreed adding: “What’s a “Vee Gan” @BorisJohnson? The vegan part of Veganuary’s portmanteau isn’t pronounced like that!
‘The Vee Gan race were at space war with the Klingons deep in the fifth star quadrant’”.
Veganuary has hit back at his statements to say that vegans can definitely still enjoy cheese, with plenty of vegan options available on the market today.
“The idea that trying vegan means depriving yourself of cheesy foods is outdated and untrue,” refutes Toni Vernelli, Veganuary’s International Head of Communications.
“Vegan-friendly cheeses are available in every grocery store and you can now even upgrade to vegan cheese at Papa John’s and Pizza Hut. There are really no more excuses.”