Voices of the Plant-Based Revolution
Veganism is the fastest growing social justice movement in the world today. During the last decade we see a plant-based revolution on the rise, driven largely by a new generation of activists, with social media as a vital platform. 2016 has been called a shape-shifting year for the vegan movement, with an increased awareness about the impacts of animal agriculture the vegan market has broke sales record, a market predicted to expand rapidly. Through personal stories, the project “Voices from the Plant-Based Revolution” seeks to speak about veganism and the vegan movement in Europe. In this photo essay you will meet the young vegan community of Europe and share in their experience of being vegan in their hometown and culture.
ANTONIA SEHLSTEDT is a photographer and film-lover from Sweden. Nuts about Fried Green Tomatoes, Milk and Chocolat, just make it plant-based
“My thoughts about embracing a plant-based diet started when I had my daughter, and especially when I breastfed her. I came to have very difficult thoughts and among those thoughts was how different things were for children.
I started to think about terrible things like children getting killed, and I began to think about animals. It was just that, it felt like such a natural situation - how she fed off my body, like she was a little piglet... and then it felt like there’s not such a big difference between her or a piglet or a calf or whatever, and I started to feel that I should become a vegan.“
“If you would have told me like two years ago that I would became a vegan I would have just laughed in your face. I always had in mind that veganism was something weird and you shouldn’t do it and that they only eat salad, you know the stereotypes of angry people. But I am just so happy that I learned about veganism because it changed my life so drastically, I feel it has changed every aspect of me. I feel so much healthier and I feel like I made so many more friends through veganism, through social media and other platforms, and I have learned to cook food and to be more fierce and to stand up for my beliefs.”
”I was born vegetarian, I've been eating vegetarian food since I were a baby and it felt very natural to continue to doing so. My parents look upon the world with karma-theory, so everything you do to animals bounces back to you. And even if today, I don’t believe in karma in that sense, it’s very instinctive. So if I eat meat which I was very curios about doing when I was a teenager, I feel extremely bad. It was like I killed the animal, like it was like staring right at me, it was a very psychical feeling so I had to stop it.”
”You don’t only change your way of eating, you also change your way of buying clothes, and make-up and so on. Now I buy clothes second hand, order shoes online to buy vegan shoes and I make my own products for my hair and skin. It’s better for my budget and I spend less time in the bathroom, and I still have the same look as before, it’s just better not to use these products. I feel more positive and I became more ecological in my way of living, it’s an entire thing!”
”It’s challenging to deal with people, it takes a lot of energy, but I understand that it’s hard for some to understand. Like the dairy-farmers that have a very hard time at the moment with cheap prizes, but maybe it will force the system and the politicians to understand that it’s not sustainable anymore. It’s starting to change. I think it’s a long process but I don’t think it will stop. People think I am missing something, but I say ’look at me - I do a lot of sports, I do boxing, running, fitness, volleyball and I just want to do more’. I just want to say to them that you can be an athlete and be vegan. I am looking forward to meeting more vegan athletes.”