International Vegetarian Union (IVU)
IVU logo

23rd IVU World Vegetarian Congress 1975
Orono, Maine, USA


DAILY AMERICAN, ROME, AUGUST 17, 1975

World vegetarians gather on Maine campus

ORONO, Maine. Aug. 16 (AP) -. Nut roasts, beet soup and pizza pies are being prepared in kitchens at the University of Maine here for vegetarians from all over the world.

The 23rd World Vegetarian Congress, the first ever hel4 in North America, began today on the campus.

H. Jay Dinshah, president of the host North American Vegetarian Society, said some 1,500 persons with varying it preferences in vegetables will be eating at the university cafeteria during the 13-day conference.

Ethical vegetarians, known as Vegans, prohibit use of any animal products, including eggs and milk.  Others, called Fruitarians, eat only Fruit and nuts.

Some vegetarians will eat no cooked foods. One group expected from India eats nothing which grows below the ground and another Indian group will not drink water drawn through a pipe. The university dining hall staff has had to round up agar-agar, an algae used as a substitute for gelatine : milk and margarine made from soybeans: dulse, a seaweek snack, and tofu, a soya cheese which tops the vegetarian pizza.

The staff also enlisted an organic farmer near here last fall to grow some vegetables not usually available in Maine.

The conference, which has been held in India and in European countries in the past, was moved across the ocean this year because of a tremendous upsurge in interest in vegetarianism in North America. Dinshah said.

Because of the increased interest, there is a need to spread proper information about the vegetarian diet. Dinshah said.

Sometimes people confuse radical, unhealthy diets with vegetarianism. There are people groping in a very unscientific manner on the basis of it some obscure scripture they may have it misinterpreted, he said.

The conference is designed to answer that need, he said. More than 80 experts from all over the world will lead courses and discussion sessions on raising children on a vegetarian diet, methods it of organic gardening, nutrition, world it hunger and religions that endorse it vegetarianism.