Saturday, October 11, 2008

VeganMoFo: Experiencing an underwhelming vegan option

No, I have not disappeared from VeganMoFo, in case you were wondering. I just haven't really done much cooking since Wed, and I have been super stressed and dealing with a lot of school work.  I did bake Veganomicon's Chewy  Oatmeal Raison Cookies (with added chocolate chips).  It is going to take all of my will power not eat yet another one right before I go to bed.

But what I really wanted to talk about is an interesting experience that I had today.  I am the President of my University's Environmental Concerns Organization this year, and even though I went vegan partially because I wanted to reduce my environmental impact and be less wasteful in terms of how and what I eat, I really do not try to be a total push-over about this aspect. People can become easily offended when their diet is on the line, but I am glad to talk to people about my veganism in depth if they are curious after discovering this facet to me.

But I don't want to get off topic about what I wanted to discuss.  Today I went to an Indiana Climate Change Summit (which happened to be taking place at my Uni) sponsored by Earth Charter Indiana.  This is a very interesting organization, and I actually would like to take more time (eventually) to explore the international website because they have many interesting facets involving sustainability and social justice/cooperation.

I was so excited when I signed up for this Summit because the two lunch options online were Vegan and Non-vegan. Sounds promising, doesn't it? I was a little apprehensive when I heard that the catering would be done by my Uni's dining services. I had a hard enough time eating there when I was vegetarian (let alone as a vegan).  It turned out that I was right to be apprehensive. They did not make much of a special effort for the vegan lunch at all. It was a sandwich bar with plenty of meat and tuna salad (not to mention a very dairy-filled pasta salad). Good thing that they had hummus and veggies, but that seems like they didn't feel like making much of an effort. Sure, there was a fruit salad, but no vegan baked good options. Thanks for tempting with brownies and cookies that I could not eat.

I should have known better than to get too excited.  You would think if they acknowledged the existence of vegans and it was one of two lunch options that the spread would be more easily balanced. Such was not the case, and it saddened me. I went in with so much hope only to be disappointed. So, lesson learned today.  Just because there may be a published vegan option, it does not mean that a lot of care and thought was put into it.

And don't get me started about how diet was never mentioned today in regards to global warming.  They had so many other facets covered but not that one.  At least CAFOs (Confined Animal Feed Operations) were mentioned, albeit in passing.

And now I am done with my little vegan rant as I run off to get a cookie and go to bed.


Celine said...

bring your own cookies next time, and show them how it's done.
but seriously though, it's sad there was nothing better to munch on for you and other potential vegans.

Jeni Treehugger said...

I would have gotten excited about that as well...and then Pee'd off too.