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NZ Vegetarian Society asks for understanding this Christmas

Press Release - For Immediate Release

NZ Vegetarian Society asks meat-eaters to offer understanding this Christmas

The NZ Vegetarian Society is asking meat-eaters to give the gift of understanding to vegetarians and vegans this Christmas.

In an article shared on their website, they point out that 1 in 10 Kiwis avoids meat most or all of the time, ‘so there’s a good chance you’ll be sharing Christmas with a vegetarian or vegan this year.’ The article points out that it could very well be a family member:

“It could be your son, who’s vegan because he cares about animals; or maybe it’s your sister, who’s giving vegetarianism a try for the sake of the environment. You may not fully understand their decision, but you love them, so you want them to enjoy Christmas as much as everyone else, right?”

The NZ Vegetarian Society challenges the assumption that making Christmas inclusive is simply about providing food that everyone can eat. While this is important, it is also necessary for meat-eaters to make an effort to understand vegetarians and vegans.

It is important that vegetarians and vegans feel accepted, the article says:

“Feeling accepted by one’s family is important – and because decisions around food often connect to vegetarians’ and vegans’ values, it’s important that you accept their choices around food. This in itself doesn’t mean that you have to go vegetarian – you have to choose to do that – but it does mean that you should accept that their decision is right for them.”

The article offers tips for supporting vegetarians and vegans over the holiday period:

• communicate that you want them to feel happy
• if you’re organising a gathering, ask how you can accommodate them
• find vegan-friendly recipes that everyone can enjoy
• keep an eye out for Vegan Certified products, so you’re sure that they’re suitable

It also encourages meat-eaters to be ‘allies’ to their vegetarian and vegan family and friends. To be an ally, the article advises, meat-eaters:

• crowd out unwanted comments and unkind jokes
• make sure that vegetarians and vegans get enough food to eat
• share their food with them, or at least give it a try

Everyone deserves to enjoy Christmas! With a lot of love and a little bit of thought, you can help make this Christmas special for the vegetarians and vegans in your life.

You can read the full article here: http://www.vegetarian.org.nz/give-the-gift-of-understanding-this-christmas/

Helpful links:
Christmas Recipes http://www.vegetarian.org.nz/recipes/
Vegan Certified Products http://www.vegetarian.org.nz/food-dining/vegan-certified-products/
Vegetarian Approved Products http://www.vegetarian.org.nz/food-dining/nzvs-approved-products-2/
Vegetarian Gift Ideas http://www.vegetarian.org.nz/shop/christmas-special-vegetarian-vegan-starter-kit/


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