More than 300,000 attendees at this year’s Royal Ascot horse racing event in England will have plant-based menu options. Chefs at the Ascot race track have developed new dishes this year to modernize the event’s menu to fit with current consumer trends. “Today, there is a true realisation that we must change the way we eat,” French-born chef Raymond Blanc told The Telegraph. “Vegetarianism and veganism is not a trend, but an important change based on knowledge and awareness that we, be it chefs, home-cooks, and retailers alike, must embrace.” Other chefs at the Ascot race track developed plant-based dishes for the event, as well, including chef Sarmado Sibley who will serve salt-based celery with gratin potatoes, heritage carrots, crispy kale, and red wine jus. While the idea of adding plant-based dishes to the menu during the Royal Ascot is a welcome change, The Vegan Society spokesperson Dominika Piasecka points out the hypocrisy in serving less animal products while continuing to exploit them through horse-racing. “Offering more vegan meals can only be a positive thing and even though no vegan would attend horse racing, plant-based food is a healthy option for everyone who wants to eat better,” Piasecka said. “However, horse racing is a romanticised industry that on the surface may seem a harmless sport, but it’s cruel and exploitative.”

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