Panorama of Events
Loving Hut Presents the Vegan Solution in Qatar
By Canada and USA News Group (Originally in English)
[Doha] In Doha, Qatar, Loving Hut (LH) shared the vegan solution to climate change at the Eighth Conference of Youth (COY8) from November 23 to 25, Golden Year 9 (2012) and at the Qatar Sustainability Expo (QSE) from November 27 to December 7, Golden Year 9 (2012). Encouraged by Supreme Master Ching Hai, the international Loving Hut family of restaurants is committed to offering healthy, affordable, plant-based cuisine to a growing number of individuals who are choosing the diet of kindness.
Young people showed sincere interest in the health of planet Earth at the COY8, which was held at Hamad bin Khalifa University before the Eighteenth Conference of the Parties (COP18) of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). COY8 brought together over 400 youths representing more than 150 organizations around the world. For three days, the participants went to workshops and took part in discussions on sustainable solutions to climate change. Loving Hut was a proud sponsor of COY8 and provided complimentary vegan dinners to the attendees.
Many of the young people at the event were already vegan or vegetarian while others were hearing about the link between diet and climate change for the first time. Meals such as fried rice, kabobs and spring rolls, all free of animal ingredients, were happily prepared by the Loving Hut kitchen team. Gathering around the table at meal time, people were excited to see what was on the menu, with many expressing delight that plant-based foods could taste so good and some deciding to immediately become vegans, including a young Egyptian man who checked in daily to report on his progress in adopting the compassionate diet.
In Doha, Loving Hut also participated in the QSE and was an official co-sponsor of COP18. The LH booth was a lively focal point for visitors to the Expo, which took place concurrently with COP18. The venues of COP18 and QSE were connected by buses chartered by the Government of Qatar.
Loving Hut provided information about the devastating environmental effects of livestock raising, particularly its contribution to global warming. Cruelty-free recipes and samples of delicious, plant-based foods were also offered at the booth. Visitors seemed eager to hear about the vegan solution to climate change. As Doha is a highly cosmopolitan city, many of its residents come from other nations. People from around the region, including those from Algeria, Egypt, Lebanon, Mauritania, Palestine, Sudan, Syria, and Tunisia were extremely receptive to learning about a diet consisting of no animal products, and many voiced concern about our planet and future generations.
Large groups of school children, many wearing traditional dress, also came by the LH booth and happily received gift bags containing recipe booklets and vegan pastries.
Moreover, visitors from India, Pakistan, Iran, China, Singapore, Au Lac, France, and Poland were attracted to Loving Hut. They chatted with the team and received free copies of the book From Crisis to Peace: The Organic Vegan Way is the Answer, which presents Supreme Master Ching Hai’s precious wisdom on the plant-based diet as the solution to climate change, world hunger, water shortages, food insecurity and other problems. Many expressed overwhelming agreement. Thus we felt the message about the lifestyle in which all beings are cherished equally will spread to all corners of the world.
Loving Hut also had a stand at the food court located outside the venue, where residents and visitors could sample and purchase tasty vegan meals. Part of the daily entertainment program included a drum performance by a group of local Qatari men dressed in traditional white sand thobes.
In addition, as part of our effort in Doha, the Loving Hut team participated in a climate-change procession held in the city center on December 1 that was said to be the first-ever such gathering in Qatar. Through dance and chant, we shared the “Be Vegan, Make Peace” slogan and were joined by several local vegan women in long, flowing cloaks called abayas. Our presence and banner drew the attention of both foreign-language and local Arabic media.
Other activities of Loving Hut included a lecture on the nutritional aspects of the benevolent lifestyle. One mother from Lebanon was enthusiastic about the new knowledge she had gained, as she had three young sons who wished to adopt the plant-based diet. A number of individuals and families resolved to go vegan after the talk, and other exhibitors, mostly from the technology sector, were also impressed by the logic and simplicity of the vegan solution.
Many attendees from previous COPs greeted the Loving Hut team like old friends, thanking those who had provided them with vegan sandwiches in the past and thus strengthening the sense that the vegan family has reached an international scope.
Loving Hut was pleased to learn that a world-renowned figure had also been spreading the meat-free message in Doha. On December 4, Sir Paul McCartney, legendary singer/songwriter and former member of the music group, the Beatles, wrote personal letters to the Executive Secretary of the UNFCCC, Ms. Christiana Figueres, and the Deputy Prime Minister of Qatar and President-Designate for COP18, His Excellency Abdullah Bin Hamad Al-Attiyah, asking them to formally acknowledge the impact of livestock raising on climate change.
Sir Paul wrote, “Although more and more evidence is coming to light showing how the growth of the global meat industry is having alarming environmental consequences, the impact of the livestock sector on global warming does not as yet seem to have been acknowledged by the Conference of the Parties (COP). I therefore call upon you to bring this issue to the attention of the Conference and encourage the adoption of policy and individual actions, such as a weekly meat-free day.”
Meatless days are gaining notice worldwide, particularly, Meat-free Monday, a campaign supported by many high-profile environmental experts, including the 45th Vice President of the United States Mr. Al Gore and Chair of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, Dr. Rajendra Pachauri. In addition, one-day-a-week “meat-free” campaigns have already been implemented in over 20 countries, including Australia, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Croatia, Finland, Formosa, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Israel, Japan, Malaysia, New Zealand, Singapore, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Thailand, UK, and USA. Bravo, Sir Paul McCartney, for your noble efforts!
Our deep gratitude goes to Supreme Master Ching Hai for granting the Loving Hut team the blessed opportunity to share the vegan message with many people from around the world in Doha, Qatar. May all humans soon adopt the peaceful diet to produce a paradise on Earth where all beings can live in joyful harmony.