News - May 11, 2015

Campus henceforth almost meatless on Mondays

Rob Ramaker

On Mondays the canteens on campus serve almost exclusively vegetarian food. It is a test which will be evaluated after two months.

The food offer in our restaurants is next Monday largely vegetarian with a small percentage of meat," says Ron Nagtegaal, Catering manager at Cormet who amongst others caters the canteen in Forum. All hot meals, including those of the Chinese, will be vegetarian. Furthermore, there is only meatless soup, there will be more choice in vegetarian snacks and only two sandwiches will contain meat or fish. The ‘frikadel’ and ‘kroket’ stay. They are too popular to cancel.

The so-called ‘Meatless Monday’ is an idea of Green Office. The concept flew over from the United States a few years ago. ‘We want to draw attention to the problems surrounding meat production,’ says Anna Gelhausen of the Green Office. Meat production uses, according to her, a lot of land, contributes to climate change and creates animal suffering. Gelhausen moreover thinks, that the initiative fits the green image of Wageningen UR. ‘If it does not happen here, where would it?'

The offer in our restaurants is largely vegetarian next Monday, with a small percentage of meat.
Ron Nagtegaal, Catering manager at Cormet

The answer to this question seems to come from Nijmegen. Yesterday, the facility management there announced an even more radical plan. University magazine Vox reports that the food on the Nijmegen campus will be completely vegetarian on Mondays, as a trial period of two months. Even during drinks ‘bitterballen’ will no longer be served. No exceptions are applicable on the plan, states the Nijmegen facility management immediately. The plan instantly caused resentment because it would be patronizing.

Nagtegaal reports that the reactions of the customers in the evaluation play a major role. ‘As Cormet, we consider this a good initiative and we support it gladly. Meanwhile, we do continue to listen to the users. When they see this as annoying or undesirable, we should consider this.'

Photo: Sylvia Currie