“Do you want a regular burger or the one made of meat?” – It looks like the world upside down, but it’s true. In a lot more places you can get vegetarian versions instead of your go-to meaty dishes. And some restaurants even made a total switch to the veggie side: it’s becoming the new standard. Of course, if you may eat meat if you want, but you pay extra.
The considerations of the operators vary, but one reason applies to all of them. Switching to vegetarian or vegan – so less or no meat at all – is beneficial for the climate and so the existence of our planet. Other reasons include: animal welfare, production and procurement costs and our own health. In this article we give you some examples of places where veggie/vegan has become the default option.
- Diergaarde Blijdorp, a zoo in the Dutch city of Rotterdam, has been selling vegan snacks for the past three years already. The ‘kroket’ (a typical Dutch fried snack) they sell is a veggie one, which is indicated by a green checkmark on the menu. The funny thing is: visitors never noticed, but now cannot believe it. “We want that veggie is our visitors’ first choice”, said a spokesman of the zoo to Dutch newsplatform EditieNL. As far as we’re concerned, a succesful switch.
- Believe it or not, but in Hamburg (really, I know!) a burger joint updated their menu. From now on Otto’s Burgers offer all their dishes with veggie burgers. We can’t put the focus on meat anymore, as we are depleting planet earth. So vegetarian has become the new default. If you want you can still choose a burger made from meat, but you’ll pay an extra euro for that one. Actually the main reason for this additional costs is that the procurement of meat is more expensive than the vegan burgers. President Kennedy would likely have said: Ich bin ein veggie Hamburger.
- In Viena, fastfood company Burger King started a trial this summer with a fully vegan branch. At train station Wiener Westbahnhof, they opened up the first 100% vegan Burger King of Austria. The fastfood giant noticed a growing interest in vegetarian and plant based options on the menu and decided to open up a 100% plant based restaurant to see what it does. So far it looks like it’s working, so it will continue to prepare the vegan burgers and snacks, as long as there’s enough supply and as long as customers are coming back.
- Winter is coming and it will be a tough one because of inflation and rising energy costs. Students in the Netherlands reported that they’ll struggle to put the ends together this winter, so the University of Applied Sciences in Amsterdam offers sponsored warm meals. The good thing is that the Uni pays half the meal of the vegetarian option, while the option that contains meat is not on discount. A win win: students will more often choose a more sustainable and healthy meal for little money. The deal lasts all winter long until March 2023 at one of the university campuses.
- Who doesn’t like to go to IKEA – especially during Christmas Holidays? At the furniture manufacturer you can also take a break and relax in their own-brand restaurant and enjoy Swedish meatballs. But only now we found out that they sell ‘a veggie hotdog’. The good part is that this ‘veggie dog’ is almost two times cheaper than the meaty version. Another example that vegetarian is becoming the new standard. Try it next time that you visit IKEA!
Try the veggie version more often
Choosing vegan when eating outside is getting more common. We see restaurants switch from serving meat to serving vegetarian and vegan dishes. Nowadays, supermarkets also sell a lot more meat replacements. So you could try to cook vegetarian dishes at home as well, with 'fake steak', plantbased burgers or something with tofu or tempeh. There's a lot to choose from and most of the times it's even cheaper than real meat. Win Win!