Buenos Aries, the capital of Argentina, has seen a boom in veganism in recent years, which is part of a gradual decline in meat consumption in the country (traditionally known for being one of the most meat-eating countries in the world). According to the Chamber of Industry and Commerce of Meat and Derivatives of the Argentine Republic, the consumption of meat has decreased in the last few decades.
The number of vegan restaurants, and vegan options in meat-eating restaurants, has been growing in the capital. Doing a google search with the string “Buenos Aires vegan” produces a map with 20 vegan restaurants, with names such as “Loving Hut Microcentro”, “La Reverde parrillita vegana”, “Veganius” or “MUDRÁ Plant Based By Matthew Kenney”. Matías Perucho, the owner of the Palermo branch of the international vegan franchise Loving Hut, said to the Buenos Aires Times, “The most important thing is that you make a delicious meal… When you eat well, but I mean really well, you don’t care so much if it’s vegan or not. When they [customers] find out that the dish is vegan, they are surprised…When veganism began, many people believed that it was a diet for the elite, and that is a lie.”
According to a survey by the Argentine Vegan Union (UVA), 52% of vegans and vegetarians in Argentina are female, and nearly 40% are under 35 years old. They estimate that in 2020 12% of the population of Argentina was vegan or vegetarian. Manuel Martí, founder and president of UVA, said, “We are a minority that is growing exponentially and we have the right to be treated as such, we need the necessary public policies to be implemented to meet the demand of our community in education, health and justice…a profound change on the part of the state will be necessary in areas that are of great importance for life itself.” In addition to an increase in people consuming plant-based products, there have also been animal protection advances in the country led by ethical vegans, as is the case of the activist Alejandra Garcia who runs a very active animal sanctuary that has rescued many horses no longer used for work.