Climate-conscious students will soon enjoy more meat-free options in Berlin's university canteens

Starting this winter, students at universities in Berlin will be enjoying a larger array of meat-free food options at on-campus canteens. The 34 canteens across 4 campuses that cater to Berlin's student population will offer a menu that is 68% vegan, 28% vegetarian, and 2% fish-based, with a single meat option that will be offered four days a week.

The menus include marinated beetroot and sesame seeds, pasta bakes with tomato and cheese, buckwheat and spelt bowls topped with grilled sweet potatoes, and much more.

"We developed a new nutritional concept mainly because students have repeatedly approached us with the request for a more climate-friendly offer at their canteens," said Daniela Kummle of Studierendenwerk, the organisation providing economic, social, health and cultural support to students enrolled at Berlin's higher education institutions.

via The Guardian

According to Deutsches Studentenwerk spokesperson Stefan Grob, university cafeterias and canteens across Germany currently offer 30-50% vegetarian options, "But in Berlin, you have a critical mass."

In 2019, Berlin universities fed about 5.6 million meals to students in its canteens. That same year a survey found that 13.5% of Berlin's student population described themselves as keeping a vegan diet, compared with just 1.6% in the country as a whole, while a further 33% said they were vegetarians.

via The Guardian

With climate protection becoming a more dire and pressing issue to both staff and students, Berlin's own Humboldt University is planning on being carbon-neutral by 2030, with Berlin's Technical University striving for neutrality by 2045. At both universities, in 2019, more than 300 members of staff signed a letter committing themselves to forgoing job-related, short-distance flights for trips under 1,000km (621 miles).