Barcelona has declared itself “veg-friendly.” At 8.30pm on Tuesday, the city’s economy commission voted on an unexpected proposal by the Catalan Republican Left (ERC) to have the city become “a friend of vegan and vegetarian culture.”
The motion prospered with support from the ruling Barcelona en Comú group, the Catalan Socialists, the nationalist Convergència party and the radical leftist CUP. The Popular Party (PP) and Ciudadanos abstained.
The project plans to create a BCN VEGpoint that will support vegan and vegetarian commerce, publish a list of affiliated stores and restaurants, and adhere to Paul McCartney’s “Meat-Free Monday” campaign.
The city will support vegan and vegetarian commerce, publish a list of affiliated stores and restaurants, and adhere to Paul McCartney’s “Meat-Free Monday” campaign
The initiative picks up on an earlier BCN Veg Friendly campaign by the non-profit Libera group and the Franz Weber foundation.
On Tuesday, ERC defended the virtues of a vegan and vegetarian diet, while Convergència noted that the practice was respectful of animals and the environment, as did the Socialists and Barcelona en Comú. Members of CUP added that it also tied in with Barcelona’s libertarian traditions.
The PP’s Javier Mulleras said he had nothing against the idea “as long as other types of food are not penalized; we don’t need to turn this into an obligation.”
Ciudadanos’ Carina Mejías questioned the health benefits of a vegan diet, noting the possibility of “vitamin deficiencies,” and recalled that Catalan cattle breeders were going through a slump.
This is not the first time that ERC has taken an unusual proposal to a city commission. A few months ago, the republicans got Barcelona officials to consider the possibility of extending the opening hours of municipal swimming pools to include more time for nudist bathers.
English version by Susana Urra.