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London Mayor Pressured To Take Climate Action with 100% Plant-Based Catering at City Hall



  • On 27/04/24 London residents and supporters of the Plant-Based Councils campaign rallied at City Hall in Docklands, calling for the London Mayor and London Assembly to ensure that all food and drink provided at internal meetings and events at City Hall is 100% plant-based as a key step in addressing the environmental impacts of food [1].

  • Residents asked to meet with the newly elected Mayor and London Assembly to discuss the matter further.

  • Groups of supporters from around the country have made similar demands of their local council [2].

  • Farmers are facing a crisis due to “unprecedented and constant rain” as a result of the climate emergency [3].

  • UK councils have already made commitments to 100% plant-based catering, such as Exeter City, Oxfordshire County, Oxford City and Cambridge City [4].  


Residents of London gathered at City Hall on 27/04/24 to call on the Mayor and London Assembly to take climate action on food by ensuring that all food and drink provided at internal meetings and events is 100% plant-based. They unfurled a ten metre long banner that read “Plant-Based Councils; Climate Action on Food” and set off vegan, non-toxic smoke flares. Residents are asking for a meeting with the Mayor and London Assembly members who are elected on May 2nd to discuss the matter further. 


Billy Nicholles, Haringey resident, writer and researcher said:


“Extreme weather is causing terrible damage to food production and wildlife in England. Even us city-dwellers have a responsibility to demand that our elected leaders act to protect nature and our farmers. Research says that we must move away from meat and dairy towards a plant-based food system."


Becky Tolley, Barnet resident, trainee teacher said:


“Our councils and cities should be leading the way with 100% plant-based catering - it's a great way to show that plant-based food can be delicious and nutritious while supporting our local farmers and making the best choice for the climate.”


In 2018, research from the University of Oxford showed that 76% of the land currently used for food production would be freed-up by a global transition to plant-based food production [5]. Plant-Based Councils argue that farmers should be supported to return that unused farmland to nature, allowing for forests and other habitats to grow, after which many endangered species could return to the countryside. This will allow for massive drawdown of greenhouse gases, thereby preventing further climate breakdown. Additionally, the land would become better able to soak up rain, preventing flooding. 

Plant-Based Councils, an Animal Rising campaign, is a national initiative of local residents who are pushing for their councils to adopt 100% plant-based catering. The group claims that local authorities have a responsibility to follow the current scientific consensus, which acknowledges the environmental, health and cost benefits of plant-based meals over those containing meat and dairy. The campaign is active in over 45 councils, with the group encouraging interested residents to sign up to run a local campaign.


ENDS


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For more information or further comments, please contact press@plantbasedcouncils.org 


NOTES TO EDITORS:


[1]  The Plant-Based Councils campaign aims to address the climate emergency starting with the food on our plates. Working with councils across the UK to encourage them to lead the way in the switch from emission heavy foods to plant-based ones that are better for health, our planet and reducing the impact from the cost of living crisis.   




[4]

Oxfordshire County Council votes to serve fully plant-based food at all council-catered events  https://news.oxfordshire.gov.uk/plant-based-food/ 

Exeter City Council votes to serve 100% plant-based food at catered meetings https://news.exeter.gov.uk/council-pledges-to-raise-awareness-of-the-benefits-of-plant-based-food/ 

Cambridge City Council votes to serve 100% plant-based food at catered meetings https://democracy.cambridge.gov.uk/ieDecisionDetails.aspx?ID=5423


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