Wadham is aiming to go meat-free on Mondays after students passed an SU motion in favour of the change.
The SU (equivalent to a JCR) meeting on Sunday was told that excessive meat consumption was harmful to the environment and it could also lead to an increased risk of certain illnesses like bowel cancer.
The motion, proposed by Josh Davis, narrowly passed with 48 in favour and 37 against. The SU’s Food Rep will now ask the college’s catering staff to produce only vegetarian food in both the Old Refectory and Hall on Mondays.
The motion claimed that livestock production is responsible for 14.5% of global greenhouse gas emissions, and suggested it accounts for 70% of the deforestation for food products in the Amazon Rainforest.
It also claimed “that a large population of Wadham holds the consumption of meat to be both cruel and inhumane, and said “vegetarianism is, regardless of personal food preferences, a more environmentally friendly system of food consumption than omnivory or pescetarianism”.
Joe Miles, a second year PPE student at Wadham, said that some “points about taste or quality” were ignored.
“Despite the assurances that this was a motion purely aimed at environmental protection, it was never actually specified what impact it would have,” he said.
“There was a dismissal of the interests of some of staff who had already given statements that, since they are fed by the college, they did not want this motion to pass, and points about taste or quality were also completely ignored.”
“This appears to be the action of a minority that wishes to make their own ideological decision- which I fully support their right to have in private – college policy. Fortunately I have the GBK app which should at least make my morally despicable carnivority cheaper to maintain,” he added.
The college used to have a policy of “Meat-Free Mondays”, but this was abandoned by the SU in 2012.