Published Apr 15, 2020Queen guitarist Brian May has suggested the coronavirus pandemic could have been avoided if everyone ate a vegan diet.
In conversation with NME, the guitarist spoke about his decision to try switching to veganism after years of feeling at odds with his choice to eat meat while also campaigning for animal rights. In addition to his announcement, the artist also theorized that others should consider adopting a plant-based diet — or risk another global catastrophe.
"I took up the Vegan Challenge in January and I've been three months a vegan now," May told NME. "To me, it was an experiment, because for a long time I'd been an animal campaigner but grappled with the fact that I was still eating them occasionally."
He continued: "I think we should be looking again at whether we should be eating animals. That's a central issue here, this pandemic seemed to come from people eating animals and it's becoming more well known that eating animals is not the greatest thing for our health."
While epidemiologists generally believe that the COVID-19 virus was spread by bats, so far, no proof has emerged that eating bats is what caused the pandemic.
May's comments in favour of veganism directly follow a call from Beatles star Paul McCartney for an outright ban Chinese wet markets, where the open-air sale of livestock, meat and produce is commonplace. So far-unsubstantiated rumours about coronavirus's origin in Wuhan wet markets have been a common belief among some circles.
According to the department of microbiology head at Melbourne's Monash University, Stephen Turner, it remains inconclusive if Wuhan wet markets were responsible for the spread of coronavirus.
"I haven't been preachy about it," May added. "But now we've seen more of the effects of how eating animals has brought us to our knees as a species, I think it's time to reexamine our world in a way that doesn't abuse other species. Whether we will see that happen, I don't know, but I think I will start to be a bit more preachy about veganism because to me it is the way forward, in so many ways."