Why Meatless Monday Works

Civil Eats has an article about the success of the Meatless Monday campaign. Chris Elam, the Program Director of Meatless Monday, explains why he thinks there's been so much acceptance of the program:

  • "It’s merely a suggestion to go plant-based on Mondays. That’s it. We keep the message intentionally simple, to make it accessible to all, in the hopes of reaching as many people as possible."

  • "Meatless Monday is about choice. [...] we want to give people more options, not less. We’re all about getting people to try new healthy foods and veggie-based recipes. It’s not about taking away–it’s really about adding."

  • "we leave it up to our adopters to define Meatless Monday. We work with so many different groups–cities, schools, campuses, restaurants, worksites, chefs, dietitians–that it makes sense to allow each one to shape its message to its specific audience. This flexibility allows people to feel personally invested in our campaign (which is vital in building a national movement)."

  • "There’s a lot of worry out there over large, looming crises: climate change, the obesity epidemic, food safety, environmental degradation, animal rights, budgetary woes, etc. Meatless Monday is a direct, personal response to these global fears, something we can all do that positively impacts these issues. In this way, we can tap into the energy and support of the many groups worldwide fighting these causes, making their platforms our platforms."

  • "Ultimately, after all the elaborate justifications and cross-competing agendas, Meatless Monday is about one simple thing: eating more vegetables. Isn’t that something we can all get behind?"

Emphasis added.

Here are a few other reasons why I think it works:

  • People seem more interested in health on Mondays. Just visit a gym every day at the same time for one or two weeks and you'll notice that a lot more people workout on Mondays than on Fridays or Saturdays.

  • A fresh spin: This concept of eating vegetarian or vegan one day a week is not a new idea. But Meatless Monday puts a new spin on it, complete with a catchy name and cool logo.

  • The timing is great for it. In an era where information is so accessible, sharing veg recipes and information that supports a plant-based diet is so much easier today than it was 20 years ago.

Crossposted at Vegan Soapobox.

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