Meat Free Mondays disappears at Sidney

Sophie Dickinson 17 October 2017

Sidney Sussex catering were under fire yesterday as the Meat Free Monday scheme appeared to have dissapeared from the hall menu.

Sections of the college took to the Sidney Facebook group to complain about the absence, and the apparent lack of consultation with students.

A controversial open JCR meeting in 2015 saw the motion for Meat Free Mondays pass after a long debate.

A delay in implementing the scheme followed, however by Easter term of 2016 a standardised menu two vegetarian and one meat option was available every Monday.

The Green Officer for Sidney, Arthur Beard, wrote:

“The Sidney catering team did not consult with the student body before discontinuing Meat Free Mondays. The catering team argue that the absence of a Catering & Accomodation meeting last term to renew college commitment to Meat Free Mondays was sufficient reason to discontinue it. This is hugely disappointing because Meat-free Mondays is a positive and progressive step towards the more environmentally-aware diet our world will need to adopt in the face of man-made climate breakdown. However, MFM enjoys overwhelming support among Sidney students and I am confident that college will reinstate it very soon. A Catering and Accomodation meeting will take place this term and college will have to recognise the strength of student support. In the meantime, I would encourage students to choose the vegetarian option as often as possible in hall, and turn out in big numbers when Meat-free Mondays returns”

The Head Chef Stephen Mather responded:

“Just to correct a few comments that are being voiced, firstly the Meat Free Monday has not disappeared for good , I have a thought that we will move it to Fridays soon as this is a better day to have it,  but like everything we do it will be done and agreed first with our student body, we are having a meeting on Monday to discuss this and other things as we do each term at the Catering and Accommodation meeting, once we have had the meeting the relevant students who sit on these committees will have their open meeting and we will all proceed from that point. As ever the catering team are fully behind this idea as long as it is supported by the students, so I hope that has cleared up any miss understanding [sic] regarding this, the green officer is also fully aware of this process. This is a good cause and has helped again with our Sustainable Restaurant Association rating for 2017 and I am sure will continue.”

Meat Free Mondays was initally devised by Paul and Linda McCartney in order to promote vegetarian eating, and awareness of food sustainability.