COP24 Boasts About Vegan Hot Dogs but Critics Complain of ‘Meat-Laden Menu’

Ikea vegan veggie hot dogs
ikeafoodservices/Instagram
PENNY STARR

The United Nations’ (U.N.) 24th Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP24) took to social media on Wednesday to boast about serving vegan hot dogs, saying the dogs have a carbon footprint that is “seven times smaller” than a regular hot dog.

The tweet came from a demonstration about how to make schools “carbon neutral,” a scenario that includes serving vegan hot dogs.

“Today’s presentation in Action Hub proved that school can be carbon neutral,” the tweet on the COP24 Twitter account said. “After the event, the participants had a chance to taste vegan hot dogs. The carbon footprint of the new vegetable snack from #IKEA is ca. 7 times smaller than the one of a traditional hot dog!”

In September, the Swedish-based DIY furniture and accessories outlet IKEA started serving the vegan dogs at the signature cafeteria in their stores in Europe and the United States, according to the chooseveg.com website:

The IKEA veggie dog is finally available in the USA and Europe! Earlier this year famed home goods retailer IKEA announced that it would add more vegan offerings to its in-store menu. And that day has finally come.

Made from whole plant-based foods like kale, red lentils, carrots, and ginger, this new vegetarian hot dog has been added to the IKEA menu in an effort to appeal to increasing customer demand and growing concerns about sustainability.

“Ikea claims its new veggie hot dog has approximately seven times less Co2 emissions/kg than its standard version. The carbon footprint of the hot dog made from meat is 6.38 kgCO2eq/kg, while the veggie hot dog has a carbon footprint of 1.02 kgCO2eq/kg,” Forbes reported.

But the people at the VegNews website are not happy with the menu at the COP24 in Katowice, Poland, where diners can choose “meat-based dishes,” including cheeseburgers and smoked bacon.

VegNews reported: 

According to an analysis conducted by organizations Center for Biological Diversity, Farm Forward, and Brighter Green, if the 30,000 visitors choose a meat-based dish from the COP24 menu, the U.N. would be responsible for contributing 4,500 metric tons of greenhouse gases—the equivalent of burning the 500,000 gallons of gasoline required to fly 3,000 people from New York to Katowice.

“The meat-laden menu at COP24 is an insult to the work of the conference,” said Stephanie Feldstein, director of the Population and Sustainability program at the Center for Biological Diversity.

“The COP24 menu includes only two plant-based options: cabbage- and mushroom-stuffed dumplings and udon noodles with vegetables. The remaining 14 dishes offered include cheeseburgers, various dumplings stuffed with meat and cheese, and beef served with smoked bacon,” Veg News reported.

“If the world leaders gathering in Poland hope to address the climate crisis, they need to tackle overconsumption of meat and dairy, starting with what’s on their own plates,” Feldstein said. “That means transitioning the food served at international climate conferences to more plant-based options with smaller carbon footprints.”

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