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Veganomics: The Surprising Science on What Motivates Vegetarians, from the Breakfast Table to the Bedroom

3.91  ·  Rating details ·  209 ratings  ·  33 reviews
Flip through a magazine, turn on the TV, or browse around online, and it quickly becomes clear: vegetarian eating is on the rise. But just who are vegetarians? How do they make the transition? And what really drives them to take the meat off their plates?

Vegetarians differ from omnivores not just in their eating habits but also in their psychology, personalities, friendshi
Paperback, 194 pages
Published January 7th 2014 by Lantern Books (first published August 29th 2013)
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Average rating 3.91  · 
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 ·  209 ratings  ·  33 reviews

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Nick Cooney
Apr 07, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  (Review from the author)
I wrote it so of course I have to give it five stars :)
Sep 19, 2013 rated it really liked it
Veganomics uses all available studies about what motivates vegetarians and vegans in an attempt to figure out the most effective methods of convincing more people to cut meat out of their diets. There are not very many studies that have been done, and the studies are often older and/or have specific problems with them, like having a sample group of only teenagers, not doing follow-up data collection, and failing to differentiate between vegan and vegetarian or even calling animals like fish or c ...more
Kate Lawrence
Mar 15, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: food-issues
A very helpful little book for veg activists, Veganomics brings together data collected in recent years about a number of topics, such as: what motivates people to reduce or eliminate meat consumption (answer: primarily animal cruelty and health concerns), what demographic group is most likely to go vegetarian (young women), what are the most effective ways to tailor vegetarian outreach to make it appealing to people (one example: refer to food as "meat-free" instead of "vegetarian"), why to emp ...more
Daniel Hageman
It was a bit more analytical than I had anticipated, not so much in it's depiction of the facts but in the numerous articles, scientific reports, and books it cited. Overall it stands as a pretty good read particularly for current vegetarians looking to best spread these important ideas.
Martin Rowe
Sep 27, 2013 rated it really liked it
When I read Nick Cooney's CHANGE OF HEART on the way to publishing it, I was struck that an individual, who wasn't an academic, had had the patience, the zeal, and the wherewithal to plow through as many social science articles, many of them very obscure, and find those curious nuggets of information that upended much of what we thought about a subject. That's why I call him the "Malcolm Gladwell of the animal rights movement." His ability to synthesize a lot of studies is admirable; he is able ...more
Lucia Milec
Apr 17, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Bob Stocker
Feb 20, 2018 rated it liked it
If you are looking for a book to answer the question of why vegetarian food is generally more expensive than comparable non-vegetarian food Veganomics: The Surprising Science on What Motivates Vegetarians, from the Breakfast Table to the Bedroom by Nick Coony isn't it. It's two other things: a call for ethical vegetarianism and a review of surveys that may indicate what kinds of people may be most likely to heed such a call.
Ben O'Hare
Oct 21, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Nov 18, 2017 rated it really liked it
Interesting stats, but primarily useful for folks in the activist community, or those looking to change other peoples' minds about vegetarianism or veganism.
Teo 2050


Cooney N (2013) Veganomics - The Surprising Science on What Motivates Vegetarians, from the Breakfast Table to the Bedroom


01. Move Aside, Cows and Pigs: How What We Eat Really Impacts Animals
• How Many Animals Does a Vegetarian Spare?
• Calculating Cruelty
• Does This Feel Weird to You?
• Putting It Into Practice
• The Ideal Message
• But Wait, Do Vegetarians Really Spare All Those Animals?

02. Who's Ditching Meat? The Demographics of Diet Change
• Why It Matter
Signe Tolbøll
Oct 15, 2016 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2016, animal-righta
i wanted to give 3.5 stars if that was possible.
Alex Linschoten
Oct 01, 2016 rated it liked it
A quick read on the impact of the food choices we make. Bits on ethical decisions, surveys on vegetarians etc.
Miriam Holsinger
Apr 19, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This was short easy awesome read. Cooney very clearly and honestly lays out the results from numerous studies on vegetarian, vegan, and meat reduction behaviors. As a life long vegetarian who knows people on all aspects of the meat/veg spectrum (and people who have moved all over this spectrum) - I loved how he organized the motivations and reasoning found behind different types of food-related behavior.

Best of all, he even reveals how they think about each other - one of my favorite quotes:
Summary: Overall there is a major psychological barrier separating omnis and veg people, even when a person "cares" about animals their brain does this cute limbo thing to allow them to stay in their little bubbles.

So, nothing we didn't already know.

The main push of this book is to help activists approach getting people to change their eating habits more effectively, in essence the people the most likely to change. It is quite repetitive and offers nothing new, at least not for me and probably n
Jeffrey Cohan
Jan 20, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: veganism
"Veganomics" has instantly become a must-read and go-to guide for everyone involved in veg advocacy.

I know I found myself highlighting passages, scribbling notes in the margins and dog-earring pages, again and again.

Nick Cooney collates, analyzes and explains literally hundreds of studies about what does -- and does not -- persuade people to ditch meat.

He concedes that much more -- and better -- research needs to be done on veg-advocacy messaging. But he presents the best data currently availabl
Sep 25, 2015 rated it liked it
I was quite disappointed by this book if I'm honest. Once again the author fails to realise that it is VEGANism that encompasses vegetarianism, not the other way around. I found it quite painful to read about how in some parts of the book he referred to vegetarianism as excluding eggs yet unless you're a lacto-vegetarian you still eat eggs... and also that he said a vegetarian diet is healthful yet mentions the China Study & Forks Over Knives, which discuss how dairy (and all other animal) produ ...more
Jul 09, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
Utterly and completely fantastic--I recently returned to be vegetarianism after several years and this book was so amazing --it's not preachy or righteous or overdone--everything it is saying is backed with major facts and the author's overriding concern with helping animals in any way possible won me over immediately. Just a fantastic book and everyone who is vegetarian or just concerned with sustainability, health, cruelty, and many other factors with meat eating should read this.
Heather Connolly
Oct 15, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This book was really interesting. I have followed a vegetarian diet all my life but somehow had never considered that people giving up red meat and eating more fish and chicken actually results in more animal deaths...! I feel that it helped me to understand the mindset some meat eaters may hold and unlike other books I have seen on the topic, it actually drew on psychological research rather than just opinions.
Jun 05, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2016
I didn't like Cooney's first book. It actually made me want to give up activism, which I had done for years. But this one I ended up liking. It has a lot of good information and I think every vegetarian and vegan should check it out! It's also helpful for those who may be marketing a product to a veg audience, so that they have a better understanding of the research info that is out there.
Feb 14, 2014 rated it liked it
While I found some of the data interesting in the demographics of a vegetarian, vegan and semi-vegitarian, I was bogged down by it. This book is directed to those who want to persuade meat eaters to become vegetarian. Since this is not me, I had a hard time connecting to it.
Jun 27, 2014 rated it it was ok
I didn't realize this was a book for evangelical vegetarians... Since I'm a vegetarian who sometimes eats fish and made the change for environmental reasons, I'm pretty much a second-class vegetarian according to this book.
Dec 23, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: activism
3.5 stars. Some very interested facts and tips, but it could be included in much fewer pages. Most of the book was just wish-wash, and then occasionally very interesting fact or research result. However it's worth to read for any animal advocate.
Apr 25, 2014 rated it liked it
Finished March 2014
Ashley Chew
May 25, 2014 rated it liked it
Not really a pager turner but it did have lots of interesting info.
Alicja Spodenkiewicz
Jan 13, 2014 rated it it was amazing
<3 ...more
Nick Lauren
Jan 08, 2020 rated it did not like it
Terribly written. Cooney essentially just narrates an excel spreadsheet.
Jun 22, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Good perspective on the "cost" of what we eat. Interesting report on surveys and what vegans "look like".
Jan 15, 2016 rated it liked it
nice tips how to promote meat-less eating based on numerous studies
Tiana Nelson
Jan 11, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Great stats and brought forth a positive, impactful perspective.
Mar 28, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Great book! Love all the statistics and great information, highly recommended for any animal activists and for people who like to be informed.
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Nick Cooney is an investor and advocate in the alternative protein industry. He has spent almost twenty years working in the food and beverage industry, initially working on the policy and consulting side and more recently from the venture capital investment side.

Currently, Nick works as managing partner at Lever VC, an early stage venture capital fund that Cooney founded in 2018. Lever VC invests

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