Kerry McCarthy has been a vegan for over 30 years, and in 2011 became the first MP to set out in Parliament the case for becoming vegan. She initiated the Food Waste Reduction Bill in the UK, and is an active member of the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Select Committee. She is also the Shadow Minister for Green Transport. Kerry is vice chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Vegetarianism and Veganism, alongside Darren Jones and Christina Rees.
In 2019, Kerry launched Viva!‘s Vegan Now campaign at the Labour Party Conference.
“I’m well-known for being a vegan. It will be 30 years by the end of 2021; a rare example of making a New Year’s Resolution and sticking to it. I’ve spoken frequently in Parliament about the links between our food system and the environment, and I’m pleased that these arguments – for which I was once roundly ridiculed! – are now gaining common currency.”1McCarthy, K. 2021. About. Available: https://www.kerrymccarthy.org/about/ [Accessed 31 August 2021].
The Honourable Member
My abiding memory of Kerry McCarthy will always be of her standing in the House of Commons late one evening – in fact, getting close to midnight – outlining the appalling effects of livestock production on animal suffering, the environment and human health. It was a parliamentray first for World Vegan Day and her words echoed around the chamber, empty except three likeminded MPs who had turned up to support her and half-a-dozen Conservative farmers, there to heckle “because they felt threatened by the whole idea!”
Read Viva!’s full 2015 interview with Kerry McCarthy here.