International Vegetarian Union (IVU)
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22nd World Vegetarian Congress 1973
Ronneby Brunn, Sweden

From The Vegetarian September 1973, the layout is an attempt to reflect the original designs:


Dr. Msakazu Tada, heading the Japanese delegation, said that Japan was vegetarian for a 1,000 years, but westernisation and industrialisation over the last 50 years has meant a 28 per cent increase in meat-eating, but there was evidence now of a reversion to their former way of life. At a display of national dance and set-dancing, Mrs. Sachiko Tada, wearing the traditional obi sash, performed the delicate ritualistic Cherry blossom dance.


Gérman Alberti Vasquez, President of the Sociedad Naturista de Venezuela, and Secretary General of the Federacion Naturista Latino-Americana, reported swiftening interest in vegetarianism in all Latin American countries - in Mexico City alone there are 15 flourishing vegetarian restaurants. The move towards vegetarianism is specially marked among the young people.


Adding some down-to-earth advice - Brindley Flower (VSUK) gave a talk on Humus, Health and Harmony - stressed the vital role that soil structure plays in the quality of our food, the basic dependence of human health on the fertility of the land; warned how disturbance of that relationship can affect us physically and mentally. A healthy humus-charged soil, yeilding stronger plant growth makes unnecessary the use of pesticides, insecticides, fertilisers. "Acceptance of the validity of the oneness of life - human creature and microcosmic - places upon man an obligation to refrain from anything hurtful."


Geo. Hiller (Germany), Deputy President of the IVU, spoke of the vital part played by world vegetarian congresses, cited the 16th World Vegetarian Congress held in Hanover and Hamburg in 1960 when membership of the German Society trebled within a few months. Every aspect of mass media - radio, television and press - should be used to make our concerns widely known. He expressed gratitude to the organisers of this present Congress, and added thanks to "our friends from all over the world for sparing neither pains nor money to come here and make this a full successful and inspiring event.


A working party unde chairman John le Grice (VSUK) concentrated on finance, administration and membership recruitment drives, came up with some solid recommendations. Among the many apects discussed . . . a Common Fund should be established in each region to assist representation to attend World Congresses, the framing of regional autonomy, the bonding of fragmented societies, the transfusion of the youth element into the movement - a report that may be later amplified into a paper for circulation to societies.


VEGETARIAN Essence in Comparative Religions was the subject of a working party headed by Philip Pick, President of the Jewish Vegetarian Society. Among their findings . . . "Vegetarian propaganda of a general nature, however efficient, appears to affect only that proportion of the population that is totally uncommitted; the remainder, in their traditional beliefs, consider that this must compromise all that is required of them in the way of ethics." Among their recommendations . . . a campaign directed to religious leaders, and research to be carried out to support the original doctrines embracing vegetarianism.



A pooling of specialist knowledge - three doctors form a lively Brains Trust panel. (Left to right): Dr. Karl-Otto Aly (Sweden), Dr. Alan Long (UK), Dr. Elisabeth Begoihn (Denmark). Questions were asked on subjects ranging from vitamin B12 to plantmilk, from balanced dietary to fermented foods. Previously, Dr.Aly, Head of a Swedish health centre and vegetarian nature cure clinic, had addressed the delegates on Therapeutic Fasting on Fruit and Vegetable Juices. He pointed out that negative factors in the modern way of living, overuse of refined foods, fats, sugars, build up poisons in the body. There remained a tendency for patients to look to drugs for a cure: "It is easier to take aspirins three times a day than to fast for three weeks." He deplored the fact that orthodox medicine for the most part still did not recognise the value of fasting. But showing that at least some of the medical profession are alive to the importance of vegetarian therapy and diet. Dr. Elisabeth Begoihn later in the week represented a medical veiwpoint when she spoke to delegates on our responsibility as vegetarians to coming generations.


Sweet and rugged as a Vermont maple, Scott Nearing, together with wife Helen, ran a Working Group on "Vegetarian Homesteading in the USA," evoked a powerful nostalgia for the good and simple life. Alert and chipper at the end of a full week, Scott celebrated his 90th birthday - incredulous friends presented him with a greetings card which ran: "Dear Scott - we love you . . . but don't believe that bit about being 90!"


David Kopp, Sweden, acted as ombudsman, headed a small party on "How shall we best promote vegetarian ideas", stressed that there should not only be reverence for animal-life, but plant-life too.