Vegan Options More than Double at US Colleges

Student demand drives dining halls to offer more vegan options than ever.


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According to a new survey, vegan options across college and university dining halls nationwide have more than doubled within the last two years. The youth division of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals assessed 1,500 higher education institutions and found that the number of schools with at least one vegan option on their dining hall menu increased by more than twofold to 62 percent—compared to 45 percent in 2015 and 28 percent in 2014. Furthermore, the survey found that nine percent of schools currently have an all-vegan dining station including American University in Washington DC, University of California in San Diego, University of North Texas, and Warren Wilson College in Asheville, NC. “For decades we’ve been committed to offering robust vegetarian options at every meal,” chief strategy and brand officer for food service company Bon Appétit Management Maisie Ganzler says, “and for many years now our chefs have been adding vegan ones as well.” Research shows millennials are increasingly aware and concerned about the exploitation of animals, particularly in institutions of higher learning. Student demand for cruelty-free options has driven schools such as Washington State University, Canisius College in Buffalo, NY, and University of Connecticut, to experiment with adding vegan dishes to their menus, while vegan organizations such as Physician’s Committee for Responsible Medicine have successfully petitioned to remove mandatory medical training performed on live animals from curriculums across the country.