Survey finds B.C. leads Canada with the largest number of vegetarians and vegans

    1 of 3 2 of 3

      While the number of vegetarian and vegan eateries and food products has been growing over the years in Vancouver, the number of vegetarians and vegans in Canada has remained the same for the last decade.

      But what has significantly increased are the number of Canadians who are following special dietary regimines.

      A survey, based on responses from 1,049 Canadians, conducted for Dalhousie University professor Sylvain Charlebois found that British Columbia leads the country when it comes to plant-based eating.

      Nationally, 7.1 percent of respondents across Canada reported they are vegetarian while 2.3 percent are vegans.

      In British Columbia, just over 8.5 percent of respondents said they have vegetarian diets while just under 4 percent are vegans. British Columbians were three times more likely to have plant-based diets than Canadians in the Prairies or Atlantic region.

      Ontario followed closely with poll results indicating just under 8.5 percent vegetarianism and about 3.5 percent veganism.

      Dalhousie University

      Several other factors were found to correlate to the likelihood of following a plant-based diet.

      Women are more 1.6 times likely to avoid eating meat or animal-based products than men. Canadians with annual incomes of over $150,000 are twice as likely to be plant-based than those who earn less than $80,000 a year.

      The biggest differences were found in relation to education and age.

      University graduates were three times more likely to be vegetarian or vegan than those with a high-school diploma.

      Canadians under 35 years of age were also three times more likely to follow plant-based consumption than those who are 49 years or older. Furthermore, over half of vegetarians and vegans were under the age of 35.

      What the poll also found is that 32 percent of Canadians have adopted special diets.

      Reasons for such diets spanned a variety of reasons, including religion and particularly health. Over 12 percent of Canadians stating that they were diabetic. Meanwhile, just under 12 percent of Canadians reported allergies and 20 percent of households with two or more children had to monitor for allergens.

      You can follow Craig Takeuchi on Twitter at @cinecraig or on Facebook.