As population increases exponentially, the impact of our dietary and life choices becomes more prevalent. VegFest, an annual vegan festival, promotes healthy and sustainable lifestyles.
On Oct. 28, Veg Fest attracted a wide variety of vegans, vegetarians and a considerable amount of curious onlookers.
“If you’re into organic, vegetarian, vegan food it’s the right place to go. Everybody was friendly, there was live music; it was a very positive environment,” junior Anthony Caceres said.
Whether you’re interested in trying new food, investing in environmentally friendly products or simply learning more about the plant-based lifestyle, the nine-hour festival provides. Though not all that attend convert to veganism, the free event encourages individuals to try something new.
This year, 67 vendors offered up their menu for samples and purchase. From the well-known Planet Smoothie to the more obscure Lakanto Monk Fruit Chocolate, Veg Fest attracted crowds with their plant-based miscellany.
Those that have already adapted to a vegan lifestyle find security in the support base that Veg Fest provided. Vendors sold only vegan or vegetarian products that are geared toward creating a more eco-friendly lifestyle. Some even guided attendees in their discovery of more beneficial life choices.
“It’s one of the few places I can go to where I can find things I can eat, wear and use. People tend to forget that being vegan isn’t only about food, it’s about the lifestyle,” sophomore Shauna Poulakos said.
Veg Fest continues to grow and develop as the years progress, and it shows no signs of stopping. Each year, their lineup grows from activists, like AARF, to animal adoption agencies.
“I feel like originally it was all food. Now we see a lot more organizations, animal rescue groups; it’s become a lot more diverse which allows for growth in the community,” science teacher Alyssa Taylor said.
In the last three years, the plant-based community has been on the rise. In Germany, 44 percent of consumers follow a low-meat diet, an 18 percent increase from 2014. Similarly, 6 percent of U.S. consumers now claim to be vegan compared to just 1 percent in 2014, according to Rise of the Vegan.
Our decisions shape the future. It is up to us whether we help or hinder the planet we live on. Events like Veg Fest help lead us in the right direction. Take matters into your own hands, starting today, Nov. 1, World Vegan Day. For one whole day, try not to eat any animal-based product.