Major UK broadcaster Channel 4 has insulted Veganuary and its participants in a now-deleted post on its Instagram account.
The post showed the board from TV program Countdown - which usually features a number of random letters that contestants try to form into words - displaying the phrase 'u a**wipe'.
The caption on the photo was 'when your friends say they're doing Veganuary'.
Matthew Glover is the Co-founder of Veganuary, a charity which encourages people to try a vegan diet throughout January, and has amassed more than 160,000 participants this year.
He said: " Apparently, Channel 4 – the broadcaster that supposedly champions unheard voices, inspires change and stands up for diversity – thinks it's cool to insult the 165k people who are doing Veganuary."
He added: "People take part in Veganuary for loads of reasons – to improve their health, to protect animals, or to help the environment.
"All pretty good things, in our book, and we're surprised Channel 4 disagrees.
"Many people are vegan because of sincerely held beliefs about not causing cruelty – something that's a protected characteristic under the 2010 Equality Act.
"We hope Channel 4 didn't mean to discriminate."
The post, which has now been deleted, received a furious backlash from vegans - with hundreds commenting within minutes.
Comments on the post included one vegan saying: "I'm sure you thought this was funny Channel 4, but you're just mocking compassionate people who choose not to murder other living beings for food. Not cool Channel 4, not cool."
Another added: "When the admin of a national TV' Insta feed is on the wrong side of history."
PBN has contacted Channel 4 for comment.