Arizona State Students Rally for Vegan Dining Hall

Students Try to Raise School's 'Vegan Report Card' Grade From a 'C' to an 'A'

For Immediate Release:
October 16, 2014

Sophia Charchuk 202-483-7382

Tempe, Ariz. – Colleges across the country are dishing up top-notch vegan meals for breakfast, lunch, and dinner—except at Arizona State University, which barely snagged a “C” on the Vegan Report Card created by peta2, PETA’s youth division. That’s why peta2 Campus Representative Katherine Gross has set out to gather 1,000 signatures from her peers in support of opening an all-vegan dining hall on campus—a move that would automatically bump the school’s grade up to an “A.” The petition, which calls for an all-vegan dining hall for “health, the environment, and animals,” already includes more than 700 signatures.

“Today’s most progressive colleges are meeting the skyrocketing demand for vegan food, and the students’ campaign asks Arizona State University to join them at the top of the class,” says peta2 Director Marta Holmberg. “An all-vegan dining hall would ensure that students in Tempe can always find a delicious, healthy, and humane meal.”

According to food-service provider Bon Appétit, the number of college students who identify as vegetarian has risen by more than 50 percent nationwide since 2005 and the number of vegan students has more than doubled in the same period. Universities with all-vegan dining halls include the University of California–San Diego and the University of North Texas. Other “A” schools—such as the University of Arizona, the University of Colorado–Boulder, and the University of South Florida—offer all-vegan dining stations.

Students cite a variety of reasons for choosing vegan meals, from reducing their carbon footprints to sparing animals immense suffering on factory farms, in slaughterhouses, and on the decks of fishing boats. Other students appreciate the health benefits—according to the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, vegans are less prone to developing heart disease, obesity, diabetes, and cancer.

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 Ingrid E. Newkirk

“Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights?” READ MORE

— Ingrid E. Newkirk, PETA President and co-author of Animalkind