“Mouth-watering burgers. Thick and juicy hot dogs. Fluffy cupcakes smothered in frosting. All meat and dairy free. Veg Food Fest is not your average vegetarian food festival – it’s the biggest one in North America….”
The opening few lines found on the home page of this year’s Vegetarian Food Fest pretty much sum it up. Not only is it the largest Vegetarian Food Festival in North America, it’s one of the oldest and largest in the world. Running this weekend at the Harbourfront Centre today until Sunday Sept 7th, this year marks the 30th anniversary of this eagerly anticipated event, with organizers expecting upwards of forty thousand vegetarians, vegans, and veg-friendly omnivores to attend.
Throughout the weekend, chefs, activists, poets and even yoga instructors will be headlining the action. Check here for a detailed schedule highlighting the array of speakers and film screenings, all of it free. Whether it’s a demonstration by Toronto Raw Food Chef Doug McNish, a compelling discussion about food, politics, poverty and public health with food justice activist Bryant Terry, or a screening of the award –winning documentary The Ghosts in Our Machine, a film which centres on the question, “Are non-human animals property to be owned and used, or are they sentient beings deserving of rights?”- the Festival promises to entertain as well as provide nourishment for body as well as soul.
The Festival is kid-friendly too, which is great because as we all know that kids are exposed to a non-stop barrage of commercials and messages from television, film and innumerable media sources which promote unhealthy dietary choices. A little balance would be a good thing.
The Veg Food Fest is hosted by the TorontoVegetarian Association and features over 100 vendors and exhibitors, many offering cooking demonstrations and free samples of delicious vegetarian, raw, gluten-free and vegan dishes, and offering the public an opportunity to learn-and buy-from the experts. And the admission price to the Festival is hard to beet (ha!). It’s free all weekend.