The Daily Mail, a British right-wing tabloid newspaper, has asked the OpenAI’s chatbot ChatGPT to write the timeline to get most people in the world vegan, based on the information provided by The NPD Group, a data research group, which recently conducted a study about Gen Z and Millennials.

The paper reported that the chatbot said that, due to the record numbers of environmentally conscious Gen Z and Millennials ditching meat for plant-based options, most people would be vegan by 2075. 

Providing a timeline for the world going vegan starting in 2024 when Gen Z and Millennials raise awareness on animal agriculture, the chatbot said that by 2073, “the world is almost entirely vegan” because it is the typical diet among the current generation in 2055”. The timeline continues with major food technology companies releasing more varied plant-based meat alternatives by 2028 and spreading the word on social media platforms, and by 2037, it says that North American and European governments will implement subsidies for plant-based agriculture. ChatGPT then wrote that the first ‘Climate Action and Veganism Day’ will be celebrated in 2048. It says, though, that not until 2057 veganism would be “widely accepted and normalized in many parts of the world.” ‘It then claims that most younger generations, who have grown up with veganism as the norm, would have significantly shaped a predominantly vegan world by 2070.

Darren Seifer, NPD Group food industry analyst and co-author of the study from which ChatGPT drew data for its answers said in a statement to the newspaper, “As consumers continue to prepare more meals in the home and younger generations cook more, plant-based foods and ingredients will be a part of their repertoire. In addition to providing a variety of plant-based foods and ingredients, food manufacturers should also focus efforts on Millennials and Gen Zs since they will be driving the category’s growth. Their concerns for sustainability and animal welfare should also be taken into account when messaging them.”

It is not clear why such a newspaper, not known to be very vegan-friendly, chose to ask a chatbot for such “predictions” (something that ChatGPT is not really equipped to do and would mostly make up stuff), but perhaps it was aiming to scaremonger by capitalising on the existential concerns some people have voiced about the rise of AI. Perhaps the newspaper thinks that a vegan world would be equivalent to Armageddon in the eyes of its typical readers. 

Jordi Casamitjana
“Originally from Catalonia, but resident in the UK for several decades, Jordi is a vegan zoologist and author, who has been involved in different aspects of animal protection for many years. In addition to scientific research, he has worked mostly as an undercover investigator, animal welfare consultant, and animal protection campaigner. He has been an ethical vegan since 2002, and in 2020 he secured the legal protection of all ethical vegans in Great Britain from discrimination in a landmark employment tribunal case that was discussed all over the world. He is also the author of the book, ‘Ethical Vegan: a personal and political journey to change the world’.