International Vegetarian Union (IVU)
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26th World Vegetarian Congress 1982
Neu-Ulm, West Germany

Rudolf and Ingrid Meyer who carried most of the responsibility for organising the Conference.

Post Congress report From The Vegetarian (UK Vegetarian Society) - the magazine printer the photos in black & white, most on this page have been scanned from the originals:

Six hundred or so vegetarians from over 20 societies converged on the Edwin Scharff Haus in Neu-Ulm, Western Germany, on Thursday, 22 July. About 40 of these participants were from the United Kingdom. As the Mercedes taxi swung into the road leading to the Movenpick Hotel, which is adjacent to the Conference Hall, we noticed the surrounding parking area was bedecked with giant flags. These symbols of the nations which were to be represented at the 26th International Vegetarian Congress were repeated in miniature on the table in the modern hall. here we were to listen to over 30 lectures.

A selection from the list of subjects covered includes nutrition, health, animal welfare, organic gardening, scientific research, nature cure, ethics and religion.

The British Party attending the Congress, pictured outside the Conference Hall.

Whenever we left the Conference Hall to relax in the surrounding park-like grounds sloping gently down to the banks of the fast flowing Danube, we were arrested by the sight of the broadside view of the magnificent Ulm Cathedral with its 350-foot high tower. Several energetic delegates climbed the 768 steps to within 61 feet of the top. This tower is reputed to be the highest in the world. (The Pre Congress Publicity page has pictures of the Danube and the Cathedral).

The Congress opened on Thursday evening. It was addressed by Rudolf Meyer, the indefatigable chairman of the Congress Committee. Speeches of welcome were given by Dr.Biebl, the Lord Mayor of the City of Neu-Ulm, and Dr.Gordon Latto, the IVU President. The evening finished with folk and ballroom dancing.

Every morning before the main programme of the day, there were opportunities for meditation, yoga and singing while others took their exercise in the Movenpick swimming pool.

At the Conference table, left, Ulrich Schröter - Deputy President, centre, Gordon Latto - President, right, Maxwell Lee Hon.General Secretary. The Mankar Memorial Award can be seen in the foreground.

The IVU General Meeting took more of the delegates time than at previous congresses because a revised constitution was on the agenda for consideration. This cramped the time allocated to National Society reports, but the difficulty was overcome by some other adjustments in the programme. An important change in the constitution is the admission of individual members to the Union. This will now accept vegetarians on payment of a subscription to receive news letters and other information concerning the activities of the Union. It will not entitle individual members to voting rights.

The Mankar Trophy was awarded to Professor Scott-Nearing in honour of his long-standing interest and activity connected with the vegetarian cause. The President, Dr.Gordon Latto, the Deputy President Herr Ulrich Schroter, and the General Secretary, Mr Maxwell Lee, were re-elected to their respective offices. The retiring Treasurer, who did not wish to stand for re-election, was replaced by Mr William Parrott. A European Regional Congress is to be held in Italy from 25-30 August 1983. The next IVU Congress will be held in America by invitation of the North American Vegetarian Society, Washington DC, the details have yet to be decided.

It has been agreed that October each year shall be set aside as 'Reverence for Life Month', this will include days reserved for World Food Day, Vegetarian Day, Animal Welfare Day and so on.

A display showing the work of the Vegetarian Society of the United Kingdom.

The lighter side of the Congress was included in the programme of events with visits to places of interest such as Ulm Cathedral, the Bread Museum and boat trips down the Danube. Excursions were made to Rothenburg, a trip to the foothills of the Alps, Lake Constance and the Island of Mainau with its magnificent gardens. The Swabian Alb and a visit to the Weleda Works were included in the outings.

An international evening of entertainment provided an opportunity for participants to demonstrate their talents. These ranged from solo singing, choir singing, playing musical instruments, dancing and poetry reading.

Another evening of entertainment was staged by the young people from many countries and a wealth of talent was demonstrated to the enjoyment of the audience. Dancing until the early hours of the morning concluded a memorable Congress which was a great credit to our German hosts and whose wonderful friendship to their guests played a considerable part in creating the happy atmosphere which pervaded all the proceedings.

Thora von der Teck (or Waltrun Widmaier as she is known to family and friends) showing off her skill as a trapeze artist during the evening entertainment presented by the Young Vegetarians of many countries. Thora is a second generation life-vegetarian who is winning much acclaim with her skills.