I ran a fundraising event for Hamilton Homeless Trust today. In New Zealand it is common for charities to fundraise by holding ‘Sausage Sizzles’, and many large shops and stores support the charities by offering them. Today I dedicated 6 hours to this ‘Sausage Sizzle’. Except I made it with a slight difference: in this meat-oriented society I decided to also offer a vegetarian option: partly because as a vegetarian I would like there to be vegetarian options at such events, and partly because I hoped to introduce people to some delicious, ethical and environmentally-friendly alternatives to meat.
I donated 3 packets of ‘Veat’ (kebabs and chicken-style pieces) to the ‘Sausage Sizzle. I must say, the sale of (meat) sausages outweighed the vegetarian options. However, there were several non-vegetarians who tried them, including some children. Perhaps it was just a one-off, but perhaps it may start something bigger… a meat-free meal once a week, or even just occasionally buying a meat alternative.
I am especially proud as Hamilton Homeless Trust appreciated the donation and want to offer vegetarian options at all future ‘Sausage Sizzles’ – which could possibly be the beginning of something much bigger (my vision would be that this meat-only Kiwi tradition opens up to the vegetarian community on a wider scale).
Meat-free Monday’s website – not about becoming vegetarian, but about choosing not to eat meat one day a week: www.meatfreemondays.com/how-mfm-helps.
An article about the impacts of the meat industry & how a more vegetarian diet can help reduce these impacts: www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2010/jul/18/vegetarianism-save-planet-environment
(Veat – the meat alternative I offered at the ‘Sausage Sizzle’: http://sfoods.co.nz/veat.)