To a meat-eater as I am, there is nothing more irritating than having a vegetarian to stay. Don’t get me wrong, I will quite happily eat a vegetarian dish on occasion but it does seem that going vegetarian is more to do with a fashionable fad than any moral consideration by the vegetarian – and don’t get me started on vegans.
I have had experience of vegans and all I want to say to them is: next time, you do the shopping!
Vegetarianism is the fastest growing trend in the developed world, according to one report – yes, and most of them seem to have found their way to us!
Ten years ago we signed up as WWOOFER hosts. Wwoofers are foreign students or young people who travel the world working on farms and smallholdings in return for board and lodging. For the Wwoofers, it is a chance to improve their English or their knowledge of farming, while for the host they are free labour.
It usually works well, and we have had some fantastic people to stay from all over the world, but 90% of them have been vegetarians living off pot noodles or something similar.
We had one French girl who was a vegan. All summer and lived off noodles and rice. Sometimes she would throw in an onion or tomato and very occasionally she would push the boat out and add soya sauce. Aileen, our current volunteer, is from Germany and is not quite a fully-fledged vegetarian, meaning she will at least eat chicken, but even so I think by the end of her stay, I could well be tearing my hair out. It does make for uncomfortable meal times when we are tucking into roast beef dripping with blood and she is munching on a few crispy vegetables trying to ignore what’s on our plate. Perhaps I should inform her of the other fact I read recently: that vegetarians produce more methane then meat-eaters. Surely that in itself is a reason not to go veggie.