Christmas is coming early for vegans and those interested in a greener way of eating – precisely a month earlier in fact. Saturday November 25 is when the Vevolution Festival returns to London.
Now in its second year, Europe’s largest vegan conference is a day of education about food made with zero animal products and will be held at the Royal Institution in Piccadilly. It is organised by Vevolution, a media and events company set up by social entrepreneurs and partners Damien Clarkson and Judy Nadel. They organise TED-style talks about veganism to inspire others to consider changing the way they eat and really think about what goes into their supermarket trolley, onto their forks and into their stomachs.
This year’s festival will feature a roster of international speakers and celebrities, including Nathan Runkle, president of Mercy For Animals, Derek Sarno, director of plant-based food innovation at Tesco, and Made In Chelsea stars Lucy and Tiffany Watson, who are both vegan. Talks will focus on everything from animal rights and health and wellbeing to the environment and entrepreneurship.
As well as fascinating short talks, there will also be panel discussions, creative workshops and the best of the vegan street food scene on offer in the capital, courtesy of Club Mexicana, One Planet Pizza, Pomodoro E Basilico and Young Vegans. Food for thought will be served courtesy of activists like the writer Tamsin Omond, Tobias Leenaert (The Vegan Strategist) and Veganuary co-founder Matthew Glover.
Also putting in an appearance will be parkour expert Chase Armitage, who has appeared on the TV show Ninja Warrior UK, and personal trainers John Lewis (Bad Ass Vegan) and Adam Stansbury (the Plant Powered PT).
Clarkson has been vegan since 2013, but began his journey in 2010, after concerns about climate change led him to join Meat Free Monday. After realising how easy and delicious it was to give up meat at the start of the week, and with the help of inspiring vegetarian friends, he had soon added a Meat Free Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday …
“I often speak to hundreds of people at our own events and as a guest speaker at other events and I always try and remember that once upon a time I didn’t even know what a vegan is,” he explains. “Meat Free Monday gave me permission to try something new, and for me it became a passion and a way to positively influence peoples lives.”
“We are witnessing a mass scale shift towards a meat free culture. And we are really proud to be playing a role in helping learn about living a vegan lifestyle.”
This year’s event has partnered with international food awareness organisation ProVeg, which aims to reduce global animal consumption by 50 per cent by 2040. There are only 400 tickets available, so get yours quick. And if you can’t make it, don’t worry: Clarkson and Nadel are kindly making all main stage talks available after the festival, at www.vevolution.co/videos