Eat green sarmies and save the planet
Durban - Be vegetarian and go green to save the planet is the slogan a group of environmentalists are using to woo thousands of COP 17 delegates into eating their veggie sandwiches.
Yelling on top of their voices to get the attention of the always busy climate summit delegates, the vegetarians have distributed more than 60 000 sandwiches since the beginning of the conference last week.
They claim their recipes do not use any animal products, whether meat, milk or dairy.
"We are doing this to save the planet. We are happy with the support we have received so far. People are eating our sandwiches," said Santina Dong.
The neatly wrapped sandwiches are made at a warehouse in Durban and put in boxes. Each box is carried by two people who use every persuasive approach to have them eaten.
"Be vegetarian and go green to save the planet," they shout.
Dong said they were overwhelmed by the support from people who did not just eat their sandwiches but also asked questions about the campaign.
"We thought people were not going to eat them because a very few people are vegetarians," she said.
Twice as nice
Dong said eating vegetarian products meant that people reduced the use of energy which caused climate change.
Farm animals such as cows consume a lot of energy, she said.
"You need a lot of energy when you farm animals. You need cars to transport meat and you need power to cut meat. You also need a lot of water."
Vegetables on the other hand grew quickly, she argued.
It was not only delegates who helped themselves to the sandwiches as shoppers at a nearby shopping mall also dug in.
"I have eaten them twice and they are nice. I am not a vegetarian but I think they are nice," said Nomusa Cele, a Unisa student.
Dolly Khuzwayo was not impressed.
"I did not like them. They taste strange."
There were also those who had no interest in tasting the sandwiches.
"I don’t trust food that is distributed freely in the public. We don’t know how and when it was made. I don’t have a problem with vegetables," said Celani Cele.