11/24/23 Students Hungry and Disgruntled over Bureaucracy

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Animal Friends Croatia sent a request to the Ministry of Science and Education with supporting survey results

- Demands for Minister Radovan Fuchs to listen to students and start the necessary change

A survey carried out by Animal Friends Croatia among Croatian students has shown significant discontent on their part as well as present demand for introducing vegan meals in student cafeterias. Students have requested simple tasty home-made foods with legumes and grains that would be suitable for anyone regardless of their diet. The initiative has existed in some shape or form since the founding of the group when they started gathering signatures for a petition to introduce vegan meals in public institutions.

“Is it so hard to make a bean stew without animal ingredients? Or not put eggs in a batter?” Animal Friends Croatia wonder. They state that vegan dishes do not need to be expensive or complicated to be nutritious, tasty, or filling. Only 8% of the existing vegetarian menu are vegan dishes even though 63% of the currently available dishes could easily be made vegan.

Student councils have been appealing for the amendment to the Rulebook on subsidized meals and for introducing a new cookbook, however, their appeals and requests have fallen on deaf ears at the Ministry of Science and Education. Animal Friends Croatia has sent several letters requesting to be involved in the amendments to the By-law on Student Meals, offering nutritionists and chefs to help, however, with no reply. In their latest communication, the group sent the request to be included in the relevant committee directly to the Minister of Science and Education, Radovan Fuchs, together with the survey results and students’ comments unequivocally demanding the long overdue changes.

According to the survey results, 92 % of respondents support the introduction of vegan options on the menus while 68% would consume vegan dishes regularly or from time to time. Comparable results were shown for trying out vegan dishes with 85% of respondents responding positively. 57% of students stated they would opt for a vegan meal every day or several times a week.

Animal Friends Croatia rejects bureaucracy as the reason for students’ hunger and dissatisfaction. They add that relevant authorities should show initiative, good will, and open channels of communication to ensure the necessary changes in students’ meal offers.

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