Japan is the land of sushi and fish stock so at first vegans and vegetarians may be concerned. But there is no need to worry. Vegan food is known as Shojin Ryori - the food of the monks. With a little research, it's possible to find restaurants and ryokans that will feed you sumptuously from Tokyo to Kyoto and even in remote ryokans in Shikoku.
It's much easier to feel outraged about animal suffering when it's somebody else's fault and somebody else who needs to change their behaviour. Which is one of the reasons why this story has given renewed vigour to campaigns to remove religious exceptions to stunning and for mandatory CCTV in slaughterhouses.
So as each and every one of you will know, this month has been Veganuary - a 31 day long promise to the birds and bees and cows and pigs and sheep and prawns and former racehorses that for the duration of January 2015 I will comply with a more compassionate lifestyle that diminishes their need to suffer.
There are so many questions you'll be asked once you go vegan - most of them ridiculous. Apparently, going vegan means you're instantly more likely to end up on a desert island and be faced with having to kill and eat something to survive. And yes - I would kick to death a Shetland pony if it was threatening me and my family and I'd exhausted all other options of compromise.
The risk of early death is 40% lower in people consuming more than seven portions of fruit and vegetables a day. Vegetables are especially important, and some studies show that raw vegetables (salads) are particularly protective. The lower risk of early death is primarily due to a lower risk in heart disease. Vegans typically also have lower body weights, lower risk of developing Type II diabetes, and they experience other health benefits.
If we look at the whole premise of veganism, one of the key aspects behind it is treading lightly on the earth. By adopting a vegan diet you not only doing something meaningful and life enhancing for your mind and body, you instantly decrease your carbon footprint and join a movement of change for the animals.