Meatless Monday Meets UIC

The “Meatless Monday” movement was introduced during World War I to encourage American families to reduce their consumption of meat that could be used to aid in war efforts. Since then, it has become an increasingly popular initiative among hospitals, restaurants, work places, and appropriately, schools. Going meatless at the start of the week is becoming more common for several reasons; aside from the extensively documented positive impact on public health, going “meatless”-even for one day a week-is beneficial economically and more environmentally sustainable. Going Meatless minimizes water usage, reduces greenhouse gases, and reduces fuel dependence, as detailed in the first reference link.

The Meatless Monday initiative focuses not on serving exclusively meatless food, but on ensuring that students are educated on the impact of meat on the environment and encouraging everyone to begin going meatless even for one day. It also works to increase meatless options in dining areas every day of the week. The Meatless Monday website lists 153 campuses already participating in the initiative, including Illinois’ own Moraine Valley Community College and Northwestern University!

Project Timeline: To create a menu, informational hand-outs, and coordinate with campus dining would take approximately two months. Meatless Mondays could officially be launched by 2017!

Preliminary Project Budget: The Meatless Monday website offers free downloadable posters, sample menu plans, and informational handouts. To gather supplies and possibly additional ingredients would cost about $3,000.

 

Detailed Benefits of Meatless Monday: http://www.meatlessmonday.com/about-us/why-meatless/

Free Posters and Printouts: http://www.meatlessmonday.com/start-a-campaign/

Additional Tools and Resources: http://gracelinks.org/media/pdf/mm_campus_kit.pdf

 

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6 thoughts on “Meatless Monday Meets UIC

  1. I love this idea! When I first became aware of the unethical treatment of animals and the benefit of cutting meat out of my diet (about 4 years ago), I decided to drastically reduce my meat consumption and only ate meat once or twice a week. When I found out about the environmental impact, I cut meat out altogether, and I know for sure that not eating meat, even just one day a week, can save thousands of gallons of water and potentially an animal’s life. I imagine that cutting meat from the dining hall might also save the university money, which I’m sure everyone is down for!!!

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  2. I agree with you completely! The average American consumes 209 pounds of meat per year, which is absolutely outrageous and the farming process is very harmful to the environment. I’m sure you have seen or at least heard of this film, “Cowspiracy”, but they also have a website with lots of interesting facts and sources for topics similar to yours. You should really check it out, http://www.cowspiracy.com

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  3. While I like your idea, an important point to consider is to think about what people who disagree with this idea are going to do. If people still want meat, all they have to do is go to the restaurants that are in or around UIC. We can’t enforce meatless Monday’s on them, and then the students will have to pay more for food, which will be a greater expense.

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  4. I like the direction of your idea. Meat-industry indeed is one of the biggest contributor to pollution and we need to change this. In my opinion, it is actually very difficult to find any vegetarian or more generally just healthy food on campus. So maybe, instead of pushing for an entire day without meat, we should push for more vegetarian meal options and inform people about how meat affects their environment. Coming from Switzerland I was surprised to find chains like Starbucks or Subway on campus. Our campuses try to work with more independent contractors, so we can eventually influence the menus they put out.

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  5. Love it and would heartily participate.
    I think there is also an opportunity for sponsorship from places like Native Foods (which pushes a Meatless Monday) and has a location on South Clark.

    I’m a fan of cookbooks by Bryant Terry – http://www.bryant-terry.com/ who would be an amazing guest to have – possibly in coordination with a culinary school and Hull House.

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