By Meghna Amin
With the launch of Subway’s Meatless Meatball Sub and KFC’s Vegan Burger, Veganuary this year was certainly record-breaking. And not just on the world-wide scale either. The Durham University Vegetarian and Vegan Society was the proud host of their biggest event of the term, and Durham’s first ethical and sustainable market: Durham Vegan Market.
With a range of workshops, speakers and stalls, the market attracted students and locals alike. From vegan activists, students of the society, and even a live music performance by Barbara Helen, the market boasted activism, the cruelty-free and plant-based life, and even encouraged donations to fund student activism in Durham.
Whilst I only popped in to try something new for lunch, I was incredibly surprised at what was on offer, from vegan desserts and cakes stalls to face painting, a local bookshop and The Body Shop. Durham’s own Hummus Soc and Durfest also made an appearance throughout the day. Aside from the treats on display in the first room, most visitors were gathered around the outside stalls, which smelt deliciously inviting from the entrance.
For a vegetarian with little experience in vegan food opportunities, I was incredibly impressed by, and interested in, the meat replacements on offer – especially intrigued by the ribs and buffalo wings available. I wouldn’t necessarily say the food was the only selling point for the market, but for me it was definitely a highlight, and something I would happily go back for.
It wasn’t only students enjoying the delightful market – the day was busy throughout the day thanks to locals too. Not only did the Vegetarian and Vegan Society succeed in displaying all the vegan treats available, but it also took one step closer to separating the divide between the students and locals of Durham.