Vegetarian Celebrities – Paul McCartney – a Star for the Animals

Following up on our article about Ringo Star, today we are going to talk about Paul McCartney, another vegetarian celebrity, a star for the animals, who gave up meat decades ago and who has urged his followers many times to follow a meat-free diet.

Just like with Ringo, there is no need to introduce Sir Paul. Being a former member of the most successful rock band in history, having written so many unforgettable hits, and even being knighted in March 1997 by Queen Elizabeth for his “services to music”, there isn’t much else I could add, besides his work for animals.

Vegetarian Celebrities - Paul McCartney - a Star for the Animals
EMI., Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

When and why did Paul McCartney Become Vegetarian?

He became vegetarian in 1975 after he and his wife Linda looked through the window and saw lambs gamboling on the field (source: The Guardian). Those were their last days of eating lamb chops. Linda was the vegetarian pioneer of the family, the rest followed soon after.

“It was like, the penny dropped. The light bulb lit up. We thought, we might just give this up.”

When talking about Linda, he says: “She was the original inspiration and she had a way about her. There was just this… non-aggressive forcefulness, and many of our friends over the years became vegetarian because of that.”


Paul is known as one of the most active celebrities for animals. he has often spoken about the carbon footprint of animal factory farming and urged his followers to drop meat from their diets.

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Linda McCartney’s Legacy

Known as Paul’s first wife and creator of a high quality vegetarian food range, Linda was probably the inspiration for the whole family to go vegetarian. She had great success with her cookbooks and her vegetarian meat substitutes such as sausages, sausage links, vegetarian pulled pork Bao Bun, “Chicken” buffet, “meat”balls, Hoisin “Duck” meal kit, “fish”cakes, burgers, roasts, and more.

Linda McCartney Foods also includes a vegan range, featuring some of the meals that were mentioned in the previous paragraph, like the chicken buffet, the Hoisin Duck, and the pulled pork Bao Bun. The vegan range also offers sausages, burgers, “fish”cakes and other meals.


Linda McCartney believed in the combination of great tasting and honest meat-free food. Her kindness – which was carried on by her family after her death – also extended to the environment. The packaging they use is 94% plastic free and the company’s aim is to be 100% plastic free by 2021.

The palm oil they use comes from sustainable plantations that offer a fair wage for all workers and do not add to deforestation and loss of habitat for wild animals.

According to the website, 78% of their products are vegan friendly 🙂 and all their vegetarian products are approved by the Vegetarian Society.


When Linda McCartney Foods was created in 1991, vegetarianism was still an unknown and not so popular concept. I think that Linda could be called the pioneer of vegetarian and vegan food ranges. Her products have received much praise and are known for their great flavor.


Paul gave up meat over 40 years ago and although he still consumes animal products like cheese, he has been a staunch advocate for animals and he has always spoken out for them, shedding light on the cruelty of the food industry. He is among the most famous and active celebrities on behalf of animals. He has also often spoken out about the carbon footprint of factory farming and urged his followers to drop meat from their diets.

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Although he says he doesn’t want to force anyone, he wants people to at least consider giving up meat and begin a more cruelty-free life which is better for the animals, for our health, and ultimately for the planet.

“You can judge a man’s true character by the way he treats his fellow animals.” Quote by Paul McCartney

He actively advocates meat-free Mondays. While he would like everyone to go full time vegetarian, he believes that meat free Mondays are a good start, a step in the right direction. (source: The Guardian).


“If all slaughterhouses had glass walls, everyone would be vegetarian.” 

Glass Walls is a 13-minute documentary, produced by PETA and narrated by Paul. The documentary shows that animals that are raised for food have to live with disease, filthy conditions, malnutrition, and unimaginable, barbaric (and legal) cruelty. Animals are not treated like sentient, conscious beings but like objects with no rights at all. The billions of animals that are slaughtered every year for our taste buds endure a living hell and terrible deaths.

This video includes graphic images

Even though Glass Walls focuses on animal suffering in the UK, the suffering is worldwide.

Additionally, Paul McCartney has also supported various animal rights campaigns, he promotes farm animal rights, and he has even written animal-themed songs to raise awareness.

  • Martha, my Dear: a song written about his English sheepdog, Martha
  • Wildlife: about animals that are trapped in zoos
  • Looking for Changes: a powerful song against vivisection
  • Meat Free Monday: in support of his meat free Monday campaign

He uses his stardom to promote Glass Walls and meat free Mondays to his millions of fans and has probably been a high influence on people giving up meat.

“When I see bacon, I see a pig, I see a little friend, and that’s why I can’t eat it. Simple as that.” 

As you already know from the song Looking for Changes, he opposes vivisection, and in 2011 Paul joined the British Union for the Abolition of Vivisection. In March 2013, the European Union banned the sale of cosmetics that were tested on animals. That breakthrough was also thanks to Paul’s help in this campaign.

He is an advocate for elephants and he played a prominent role in the release of Sunder, an elephant that was abused by his handlers in an Indian temple. He also helps the fight against ivory trafficking.

As you can see, Paul has played a huge part in some of the changes we have seen and are still seeing.


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Final Thoughts

Ever since the 70s he has never stopped speaking up on behalf of animals and he has worked tirelessly for their rights. He is an animal hero and a prominent voice for them.

Although Paul McCartney is mostly remembered for being a member of The Beatles, he is leaving a lasting legacy for animals and the environment. In 2012, he got his own star on the Walk of Fame in Hollywood, like all the other Beatles. Just like in music, he is also a star for the animals.


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18 thoughts on “Vegetarian Celebrities – Paul McCartney – a Star for the Animals”

  1. What a great article

    I am also vegan and glad to see some celebrities’ who are plant based like Paul Mccartney.
    Thank you for this list and I liked the video too.

  2. Thanks for the article! I love the fact that you post about and promote the celebrities that are vegetarian and more animal-friendly, as it helps give me more respect for them. But Paul McCartney? I had no idea! This definitely gives me more respect for him and more love towards his work. 

    • Hi Christine!
      I had no idea that Paul McCartney is a vegetarian! I always loved the Beatles, but now I will respect sir Paul even more!
      I’m vegetarian myself too and I gave up meat two years ago. I tryied one month a raw food diet, but it was not easy. Since then I didn’t have a desire to eat meat anymore, but I eat cheese and milk sometimes.
      I just wish that more people will go vegetarian seeing the example of Paul and Linda, and our planet will experience less cruelty.
      Thank you for sharing this post!

      • Hi Alex,

        That’s wonderful that you’re vegetarian 🙂 A raw food diet can be a bit of a challenge, although I do love raw vegan food, and I eat it once in a while. I especially love raw vegan desserts. I prefer to mix it up a little. Being on a pure raw vegan diet is also a little challenging for me, but I know that the food is delicious 🙂

  3. Linda McCartney must have made an absolute fortune being the pioneer when it comes to a vegetarian lifestyle. I know Paul McCartney for his music but never knew he runs campaigns to promote a vegetarian diet.

  4. Hi Christine,

    Sorry I haven’t dropped by in a while, but I’m always interested in what you have to say.

    Hailing from the UK, over the years I’ve seen first-hand much of what both Paul and Linda have done and accomplished.

    I’m not going to pretend that I’ll ever be vegetarian, but I applaud them both for their achievements.

    It’s funny that you mention the “Meat-Free Mondays” because it’s something I remember Paul campaigning for very well, and it did actually “convert” me.

    Still to this day, we have at least one day a week that is always meat-free (not specifically Monday’s, but one day a week nonetheless).

    Our supermarkets are always brimming with Linda McCartney produce, and I’m not adverse to the meat-free sausages and I do love the vegan “cheese” and onion potato bakes.

    Plus, we’re lucky enough to have a vegan cafe nearby, which also does home deliveries.

    So, our meat-free days certainly make a nice change, and I’m often surprised at the variety of wonderful meals on offer.

    As for Paul, he still continues to impress me, and he carries on as a staunch advocate for animal welfare.


    • HI Partha,

      You are so lucky to have Linda McCartney’s foods in your local supermarkets 🙂 Where I live I am going to have to order them online. They really look delicious and you made my mouth water with vegan cheese and onion potato bakes.

  5. Hi Christine, another great article about one of your heroes! As I am not English I know Paul McCartney more for his music than for his vegetarianism. Although I was aware of Linda’s!

    As you know you inspire me with your articles. And now you have also inspired Tom. He used the video of Joaquin Phoenix you posted the other day in one of his articles as well. 🙂

    More good news from Europe: Greece has now passed a law that can bring animal cruelty to justice. Poisoning and killing animals is now on the same scale as killing people.

    It’s great that McCartney uses his bigger influence for animal welfare, but we desperately also need people like you to influence on a smaller scale. That has a significant impact as well. 🙂

    • Hi Hannie,

      Thank you for your words and considering me someone who is also making a small impact. Those words warmed my heart 🙂
      The news from Greece is wonderful, really wonderful! I have been to Greece and I know from a friend who lives there how terrible the cruelty to animals was (is) there … it broke my heart learning about it, so I am very relieved and happy that Greece has finally passed a law to bring animal abusers to justice!
      That’s great that Joaquin Phoenix’s video inspired Tom! Was it the speech he gave at the Oscar’s? It has a very powerful message, and I am grateful that Tom shared it on his website 🙂

  6. Hi Christine,

    Meat Free Monday sounds like an excellent start for people like me, and I am willing to try this as my new year resolution in 2021. I also like how his wife, Linda, did for animal rights and provide many delicious-looking meals to replace our eating habits with substitute animal meats. Making a change isn’t easy, but I think we all can start with little things then the major ones.

    Thanks for sharing today,

  7. Howdy Christine! This is lovely! I love how well you write, I could not help but reread. Paul and his wife have done a lot as regards spreading awareness on killing of animals for food tho, and making people turn into Vegetarians. It is Quite intriguing! Who knows? One day I could just quit eating animal products too!

    • Hopefully one day you will 🙂 And if you need any help with it let me know 🙂

      I’m glad you like my writing style! Thank you for your comment!

  8. Hi Christine,
    Truly an inspirational article it will create a great impact in the society where animal’s life has no value but people will continue its cruelty on them just to satisfy their taste buds.

    This needs to be changed because every life matters, through your article people will have a sense of concern towards animals and surely will bring a change.
    More people, celebrities should bring a revolution towards veganism and change, influence the world.

    Paul Mc Cartney is truly an animal hero, with help of his wife he contributed and protected animal rights.

    Thanks for sharing this inspirational article it will surely impact people’s thoughts towards animal cruelty.

    • Hi there!

      I admire celebrities who use their stardom to help the helpless. Paul McCartney is truly a hero for the animals. He and Linda have done so much for them already.
      Thank you for your comment!


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