World Vegetarian Day has been observed on October 1st since 1977. Established by the North American Vegetarian Society (NAVS) and endorsed by the International Vegetarian Union in 1978, World Vegetarian Day is a day dedicated to promoting the values, health benefits, and environmental impact of a vegetarian or vegan diet.
This isn’t just a day for those who are already vegetarian. NAVS encourages everyone to use October 1st as an opportunity to give the veg diet a try. It’s a great way for people who are veg-curious to try out meatless meals for a day, a week, or more. And for those who have been looking for an “excuse” to go vegetarian but just haven’t gotten around to it, World Vegetarian Day makes a good starting point.
Spreading the word about World Vegetarian Day, and vegetarianism in general, is easy. The NAVS website offers free vegetarian awareness posters that can be downloaded in PDF form or ordered online. Other organizations, such as In Defense of Animals, have a variety of outreach materials, some of which are free and others that can be ordered for a nominal donation fee. These materials are aimed at informing people about the overall effects of the food they eat: how it impacts their bodily health, the environment and, ultimately, the world.
Vegetarian awareness materials can be displayed in a variety of places. Local libraries, coffee houses, schools, workplaces, and even post offices may have areas where non-profit or advertisement-free posters and handouts can be left for others to look at. Though displaying materials doesn’t mean that everyone will look at them, having them available can start people thinking even when they casually glance through a leaflet or read the message on a poster. Even a small vegetarian awareness campaign can have a big impact.
Interested non-vegetarians may wish to visit the NAVS website and pledge to abstain from animal products for a period of time during the month of October. Vegetarians who want to spread the veg love can download printable pledge cards to hand out to family, friends, co-workers, and other interested parties. Anyone can get involved in World Vegetarian Day and, in doing so, make an impact on the overall health of the world and the people in it.