Egypt’s traditional vegetarian cuisine is ideal for delivering healthy and sustainable catering at the UN’s biggest climate event
Over 160 NGOs, led by global food awareness groups, 50by40 and Proveg International, are encouraging Egypt to provide sustainable, plant-rich food to delegates attending the UN climate summit – COP27 – hosted in Sharm El Sheikh in November.
In a joint letter to the Egyptian COP27 steering group, 50by40 and Proveg International are urging Egypt to show global leadership by providing the delegates from the nearly 200 participating countries with nutritious plant-based meals throughout the ten-day event.
“Egypt will be setting a fantastic example for future COP events by serving more plant-based meals to delegates. With the country’s culinary heritage, Egypt also has the advantage in that its diet has always been anchored in legumes, vegetables and grains, out of which come delicious and nutritious meals,” Raphael Podselver, Head of UN Advocacy at ProVeg International, said.
The global food system currently accounts for about one third1,2 of global greenhouse gas emissions, but plant-based foods have about half3 the carbon footprint of animal-based food, making them the most sustainable and appropriate choice for a climate summit.
COP27 will already be marking a food milestone for these UN summits because, for the first time ever, the summit will play hosts to pavilions focused on food system change, including the Food4Climate Pavilion where both ProVeg International and 50by40 will be promoting the benefits of plant-rich diets, along with a host of other NGOs.
“In a time of climate crisis and growing hunger, exacerbated by the war in Ukraine, it is a moral imperative to serve food that has the least climate footprint and allows for global equitable food distribution,” says 50by40 CEO, Lasse Bruun.
“The latest UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) highlights the link between overconsumption of meat in the Global North and nutrition deficiency in Least Developed Countries (LDCs). The highest consuming countries, G20 nations in particular, must take responsibility and help Egypt make the right food choices for COP27.”
COP27 will take place at Sharm El Sheikh from 6th to 18th November. Working out of the Food4Climate Pavilion, both 50by40 and ProVeg International will aim to highlight how current industrial food systems are major drivers of environmental degradation and climate change, and that plant-rich diets are an important part of the solution to the challenges we all face.Letter-Egyptian-Presidency-Catering-COP