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Thursday, May 23, 2024

Vegans and vegetarians will be delighted with the new “Meat-Free Mondays” campaign at Gator Dining locations.

Starting Nov. 8, Gator Corner Dining and Fresh Food Company will provide a variety of vegan meal options Mondays as part of a nationwide campaign to educate students on the environmental and health impacts of meat consumption.

“There’s a lot of links between heavy meat consumption, heart disease and other things,” said Dana Falstad, sustainability manager for Aramark, Gator Dining’s food service provider.

Falstad also stated that the carbon footprint of meat consumption is much higher than that of vegetables, due to its high energy intake.

Thirty other universities across the nation have joined the campaign, which has been publicly endorsed by Meatless Monday, a non-profit organization that works to promote meat-free eating, as well as GatorWell, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals and Gators for a Sustainable Campus.

While the dining halls will still serve meat Mondays, students will have the option to have meals prepared without it. There will also be a vegan breakfast option available.

For Monday, the dining hall menu includes tofu salad, Mediterranean pasta and vegetarian pizza.

Over the next few weeks, Aramark and Gator Dining Services plan to expand the campaign to include the Home Zone and Orange & Brew at the Reitz Union as well as the Racquet Club Dining Hall, with a vegetarian menu on request at each location.

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