Despite bomb threats and torrential rain, thousands of people flocked to London's Royal Horticultural Halls for Europe's largest ever vegetarian event, Viva! "s Incredible Veggie Show, last Saturday June 30. Everything you could ever have wanted to know about going, being or staying veggie/vegan was on tap, including delicious food tastings from vegan food manufacturers.
Colourful images of Heather at the event and other images from the day can be viewed at:
http://www.viva.org.uk/post_ivs (Hi-res versions are downloadable from the page)
The Incredible Veggie Show was organised by campaigns group Viva!. It followed the hugely successful series of Incredible Veggie Roadshows which have toured the UK since October 2004 - from Canterbury to Cardiff, Solihull to Southampton, 17 venues in all and each one packed to capacity. The shows have attracted 37,000 visitors in total, drawing in existing veggies, those looking to make a switch to a more compassionate vegetarian lifestyle and those simply looking to cut down on their meat consumption. Pledges by visitors to the shows have potentially saved over 100 million animals from being eaten.
The Incredible Veggie Show saw Viva! patron Heather Mills wowed the crowds with her top tips on how to "convert a carnivore'; Rose Elliot MBE, the queen of vegetarian cookery, gave free demonstrations to a packed out auditorium; Professor Jane Plant CBE, who has beaten cancer five times, talked about her diet for health; Viva! "s director Juliet Gellatley talked about why you don't need dairy for good health, and TV presenter Wendy Turner-Webster presented a celebrity auction. The Show proved to be a brilliant family day out, with 100 exhibitors showing everything from vegetarian food and drink to clothing and footwear, cosmetics and toiletries to baby products.
Viva! has its HQ in Bristol and offices in the USA and Poland. It carries out undercover investigations to expose animal abuse and its successes include the dumping of all "exotic' meats such as kangaroo and crocodile by UK supermarkets, ending the debeaking of UK ducks, slashing the export of Polish "meat' horses to the EU and persuading a US supermarket chain to entirely rewrite its animal welfare codes. Viva!'s most recent success was to persuade supermarket chain Lidl to drop foie-gras from its stores " and was instrumental in Waitrose's decision to become the first UK supermarket to allow ducks raised for meat access to water for swimming.
"We are absolutely delighted that so many people attended The Incredible Veggie Show. I believe it indicates a fundamental change in people's attitudes to animal cruelty, health and the state of the planet. It was a fun day out and a celebration of veggie living but the underlying message was deadly serious,' says Juliet Gellatley, Viva! "s international director.
Due to an unprecedented demand, Viva! "s It's Time to Go Veggie magazine ran out on the day. The colourful 40 page guide, which provides all the information anyone could ever want to help them change to a healthier diet, is available free of charge from Viva! for anyone who missed out. To obtain a free copy simply ring Viva! on 0117 944 1000, email firstname.lastname@example.org or write to Viva! at 8 York Court, Wilder Street, Bristol BS2 8QH. Web: http://www.viva.org.uk.
The Incredible Veggie Show is sponsored by Beanie's Health Foods (Wholesale) Ltd, Plamil Foods Ltd, Lavera, The Redwood Wholefood Company Ltd, Fresh & Wild, LoveLondon.org.uk, Viva!and the Vegetarian & Vegan Foundation.
For any more information on the Show please contact Justin Kerswell on 0117 944 1000 or email email@example.com