Youth activists for the climate successfully persuade the UN to ensure that COP28 serves sustainable vegan food to guests.

In an exciting development for environmental activists, the presidency of the COP28 climate summit has confirmed that plant-based foods will be served at the upcoming event. This decision follows an outreach effort by youth activists from YOUNGO (Youth Climate Movement) and Food@COP, who wrote a letter urging the COP28 leadership to offer plant-based options.

These activist groups, with the assistance of ProVeg International, advocated for at least three-quarters of the menu at COP28 to feature plant-based meals. The proposed foods would not only be plant-based, but also affordable, nutritious, culturally diverse, and locally sourced where possible, with clear emissions labeling.

The response from the presidency, signed by Dr. Sultan Al Jaber, the UAE COP28 President-Designate, confirmed the adoption of these principles. While there was no explicit indication of the percentage of plant-based foods that will be served, Al Jaber assured that these options would be available, and the suggestions made by the activists were under “serious consideration”.

Youth activist and ProVeg campaigns and policy officer, Lana Weidgenant, hailed this as a significant achievement. “By committing to plant-rich, regional, and affordable catering, the COP28 Presidency is showing leadership, innovation, and recognition of the impact of meat consumption and animal agriculture,” Weidgenant said.

Historically, the food system’s considerable effect on climate change has not received ample attention at the COP summits. However, COP27 marked a shift, hosting pavilions dedicated to food system change for the first time. This year’s plant-based commitment represents another significant step in the right direction.

Food@COP member Gakii Sharon expressed hope that the shift to plant-centric diets at the climate summit would inspire the nearly 200 countries attending the conference to implement more equitable food systems.

COP28, set to take place in Dubai from November 30 to December 12, will bring an exciting array of plant-based meals to the table, illustrating that global climate change solutions can also be delicious.

Original source: https://www.onegreenplanet.org