For decades, being a Vegetarian or Vegan sort of made you a freak. ‘Everyone’ eats meat, and so you would be outside.
I recall developing a kind of pattern, when invited to a function. I’d eat first. Then I’d go to the dinner.
Everything had meat in it. A bowl of ‘vegetable’ soup would be made with chicken stock. The main course was always a slab of meat and some vegetables. Sometimes the salad would have shards of meat for flavour.
Usually I’d have coffee and the desert, but sometimes, just coffee.
When invited to buy a ticket for a dinner, I’d decline; “I’m a vegetarian” I’d say. For too long I’ve found that when I told people I did not eat meat I’d get a plate with an empty space.
A few restaurants could give me a vegetarian meal, and in those early days, when airline were luxury, in flight. But most people stuffed meat in their faces.
Now, suddenly, I’ll find things I can eat at many functions. There are alternatives, and many people are opting for them.
Outside of those who are overweight and would eat anything, (there is still a population of those) many people have cut meat out of their diets. They’ll eat fish, they’ll use diary products, but no dead meat is on their plate.
It is so strange to recall that nine years ago there was nothing to eat at the dinners I was invited to, and today there are so many offerings I don’t know what to take.
I think many people have realised that meat is not healthy.
In ancient days, in Jamaica, people ate very little meat. They couldn’t afford it. They ate a lot of ground provisions, fruits, and were healthy. Oil was coconut oil, and flour was often hand made from cassava. Sugar was very dark and lumpy.
Then entered vegetable oil, junk food, white flour and white sugar, and Jamaica has soared in the number of overweight people, diabetes, heart disease, etc.
Duh? You think it is the diet?
So many people have now removed meat from their diet, and it is world wide. Many companies are adding vegetarian or vegan entries to their menus.
Being a vegetarian is no longer being a freak.