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Opinion

Vegan options are abundant in UWRF meal plan

Miranda Ailport

February 7, 2018

I became vegan around four years ago. When I first started, I didn’t know what I was doing. I could eat fruits and vegetables, but what else?

A few times I went over to dinner at someone’s home and I had to explain awkwardly that turkey burgers were not vegan. Turkey is an animal. Vegan means that you don’t consume, wear or purchase anything that contains animal product.

There are three main reasons people go vegan: they transition to a vegan diet for health reasons, for the animals or for the environment. I chose veganism because I couldn’t look into an animal’s eyes and understand why it should give its life for me just so I can eat it when I can just eat plants.

I’ve found that veganism is a lot easier than some people would think. For example, Oreos are vegan friendly. This should probably be alarming, but they’re so delicious. The hardest part of veganism is, like I said before, explaining to people what exactly I can and cannot eat and where we get our protein from.

I sometimes struggle with finding food when I am out to eat. Naturally, I was concerned about my ability to eat on campus. I haven’t yet met any other vegans or vegetarians, but I’m sure they are out there on campus and I’m sure they struggle with this too. I thought I’d share what I’ve been eating around campus to help my fellow animal lovers out.

UW-River Falls thankfully serves many vegan and vegetarian options if you are looking for that type of food. They serve vegan chocolate chips cookies, so I’m pretty much sold! Freddy’s Convenience Store has veggie sushi, fruit cups and even a kombucha drink for sale. I only have an hour break for lunch on Monday, Wednesday and Fridays, so it’s a nice way to grab something quick but healthy to eat for lunches.

The Riverside Commons serves heaps of vegan options. The explicit vegan options are in the allergen-friendly area with the purple spoons. I’ve had delicious sweet potatoes and plain rice there. The salad bar, sandwich bar and stir-fry bar can all be modified for vegans. My favorite meal is a hummus and veggie wrap, blood oranges, chocolate chip cookie and some chocolate soymilk. There are tons of combinations, though. Einstein Bagels and Erberts and Gerberts also have vegan and vegetarian options. In the morning, if I need something warm, I get a hot tea with soymilk.

Veganism is something that’s really starting to catch hold in our world. More and more people are looking for options that don’t contain animal products or are looking for options that don’t contain gluten or dairy. While I’m hoping for vegan pizza or maybe vegan hot dogs somewhere in the lunch line, I’m grateful that UWRF has food I can eat and feel good about eating.

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