|International Vegetarian Union (IVU)|
IVU and EVU Congresses
from EVU News Issues 3+4, 1995
The IVU Congress in Sydney, Australia has been cancelled because of various difficulties. Instead there is definitely an IVU Congress from 29th of July 'til 4th of August in Johnston campus of the University of Pittsburgh in Pennsylvania, organized by the North American Vegetarian Society (NAVS).
The accomodation is in motel type rooms with a bathroom or in double rooms with a bathroom between two rooms. The site is quite flat and therefore suitable for any infirm people.
Johnstown is in the Appalachian Mountains and offers quite a lot besides the Congress: a beautiful nature for outdoor fans and numerous places for lovers of culture and history.
As the Olympic Games are from 20th of July till 4th of August in Atlanta, you better book early!
You will get further details from:
- and on the IVU page about the World Vegetarian Congress
Our Italian friends are already working on the next EVU Congress in Italy. A problem seems to be the choice of the date: July and August are rather difficult, because there is a lot of tourism and hotels are quite expensive. The alternatives would be September or April. Personally I would prefer the days during Easter, for in September school has started everywhere in Central and Northern Europe and a lot of people might not be able to come for that inconvenience.
There is another reason, why April would not be bad: The Swedish Vegans and Vegetarians could organize their Festival and Bicycle Tour without interfering with the EVU Congress.
Anyway, nothing has been decided yet and we will keep you informed.
Sigrid De Leo
EVU Congress in Bratislava"Finally, we are allowed to work in public"
5th European Vegetarian Congress in Bratislava (Slovakia) - a special challenge for young initiatives of vegetarians and the "East European Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals".
Though world vegetarian congresses have already been held since about 100 years ago every second to third year, the umbrella organization EVU (European Vegetarian Union) has only existed for 10 years. Since radical political changes and the drop of the so-called "Iron Curtain" one of the major tasks of the eastern countries is to promote formerly oppressed efforts for the protection of animals and environment.
Being forbidden under socialistic dictatorship, vegetarian organizations in those countries are very young. Only for the last 5 years, information and magazines may be spread, like from ecological agriculture, which had no chance at all during Communism.
The organization of the 5th European Vegetarian Congress (for the first time in the "east") therefore was a very special task for the Slovakian Republic, only possible with the personal effort of young voluntary assistants, who sacrificed their holidays and took long travels into the bargain.
The still young Slovakian Vegetarian Society, as organizer, had to struggle with various difficulties (e.g., the limited choice of foodstuffs) and, besides, had expected considerably more than 250 participants. The german delegation was the biggest one with about 120 people, which is amazing because actually the British have the oldest vegetarian tradition. Not only Europeans came, but also people from India and the United States, altogether 25 nations of 3 continents.
Lectures and workshops illustrated vegetarian and vegan lifestyle from all kinds of aspects: historically, sanitary, ethically and ecologically; the effects of vegetarianism on sports, environment and social structure.
Here again, different lecturers referred to studies which pointed out the considerable health- advantages of vegetarian nourishment as opposed to the one rich in meat. But the congress-food as well as the differences in shapes and sanitary condition among participants showed that nourishment without meat isn't automatically healthy food. There were people like the suntanned, pithy fruitarian in his eighties as well as the sickly, overweighted "pudding-vegetarian" far away from a wholesome food.
Both hotel-meals and product-presentations made clear that soya-products with their industrial concentrates of proteins (Tofu ..) and meat-imitations (TVP) have too high a rank. The struggle for questionable substitutes for meat and the still wide-spread fear of deficiency in proteins reveal a new market of many billions with soya-protein as raw material for all kinds of artificial food, which is detrimental to a healthy wholesome nutrition. A better enlightenment as to wholesome food is necessary to stop expansion of industrial food.
How successful young initiatives of the east in stopping the west multinational companies can be, has proved the (only) Slovakian society for the prevention of cruelty to animals "Freedom for animals" by preventing the settlement of McDonalds in Bratislava, with support of their mayor, up to now.
All in all, this congress has shown: who, in the countries of the former Eastern bloc, strives for health, is confronted even more with absurd situations than people are in western states. Products which are healthy are taxed higher in Slovakia! But there is a high potential for development and there exists a demand. In any case, the presence of media (radio, TV and press) during the time of the congress was enormous throughout the whole country.
The participants have composed a call to all the European governments to find uniform, drastic bills to reduce animal transports, to stop the cruel agriculture-industrial methods, to protect nutrition of a reduction in quality as cause of additional substances, as well as to stop genetic engineering and irradiation and to spread vegetarian dishes.
Congress lectures availableLectures at the Bratislava Congress: The following manuscripts are available (xerocopy) and can be ordered from Hildegund Scholvien. (Please think of a reasonable donation to cover copy-costs and postage)