Tuesday, 8 October 2013

A weekend at VegFest UK in London

Last weekend I went to London for VegFest UK at Kensington Olympia, which was an interesting vegan event that I was really glad I went to. I was amazed to see how huge it was, with over 9000 people attending!

Unfortunately, apart from the photo above, I didn't get a lot of photos myself as they all came out a bit blurry for some reason, but there were a few highlights of the show that I'd really like to share here, and a few photos that other people took of the event I'll include as well.

As I wrote in an earlier blog post, I do already have quite a collection of vegan cheese in my fridge at the moment, but that didn't stop me making sure I tried as many free samples of the cheeses at the festival as I could, especially as we still don't get a great variety of vegan cheeses up here in Edinburgh yet. I was really impressed with the quality of the different flavours of cream cheese at the Sheese stand, as well as the multiple varieties of Vegusto they had there, and particularly the walnut flavour one. So good!

Photo Credit: Vegusto

 I also really enjoyed trying some delicious cacao covered coffee beans made by BonPom, which combine two of my favourite flavours: coffee and chocolate!

Photo Credit: BonPom

Another tasty discovery was Orzo Coffee's really tasty naturally caffeine-free barley coffee. I was amazed at how similar to coffee it tasted!

Photo Credit: Orzo Coffee

I also really enjoyed eating some of the amazing vegan cakes made by Ms Cupcake (a vegan bakery based in Brixton, London), and particularly the Ferrero Rocher brownie. They make incredibly high-quality vegan cakes, which always impress non-vegans with their total deliciousness.

Photo Credit: VegFest UK

However, as much fun as I had trying all the delicious vegan food on display, the real highlights for me were the campaign stands and the informative programme of talks. I found the talk by campaign group Viva! on how human activities can have a negative impact on wild non-human animals really interesting, as well as the parliamentary update from Kerry McCarthy MP (one of the UK's three vegan MPs currently sitting in the House of Commons. I also thoroughly enjoyed The Vegan Option's live recording of their radio show on the subject of questions that vegans frequently get asked, although sadly I could only stay for the first half as I had to rush off to get to the Arctic 30 solidarity protest in London that afternoon.

Photo Credit: Anna Mayfield

Photo Credit: Anna Mayfield

I could write a whole bunch more about the many different campaign groups which had stalls at VegFest UK London this year, but I think to do the subject justice I will save it for another blog post in the future about opportunities for animal rights and vegan campaigning in the UK.

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