With many companies recognizing and adapting to the rapidly growing vegan movement, Disney is also getting on-board as they announced today that they’ll be incorporating plant-based cuisine to every dining spot in their United States theme parks.
Over 400 plant-based meal options will be offered at quick-service and table-service restaurants in Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida as of next month, as well as in Disneyland, Anaheim, California by spring time next year.
This is a big project seeing as there are over 600 locations where you can dine at The Walt Disney World in Orlando and Disneyland in Anaheim, and the majority of them are specifically themed to the park or hotel. Sticking with this concept, many of the vegan options will also be themed to suit the corresponding location, such as the Star Wars inspired “Tatooine Two Suns Hummus” at Disney’s Hollywood Studios.
It’s not just the theme parks that are getting upgraded; anywhere serving food within the 36 Disney hotels in Orlando and the 3 hotels in Anaheim will also be adopting vegan-friendly choices, such as Carrot Gnocchi, Eggless Florentine, Cauliflower Tacos, and Chili-Spiced Crispy Fried Tofu.
Plant-based or vegan?
Disney has made sure that the foods are labelled as “plant-based” instead of “vegan”, since what classifies as strictly vegan is somewhat debatable. Each plant-based option on the menus will be identified with a new green leaf logo to help customers find the items they’re looking for. Although some foods might contain common ingredients such as palm oil – which is technically vegan but is avoided by many due to the destruction caused from palm oil plantations – Disney confirmed that all foods labelled as plant-based “are made without animal meat, dairy, eggs, or honey,” which is generally the most widely accepted definition of vegan food.
This is a bold step forward for Disney, especially seeing as theme parks are known to primarily sell fast food items such as hotdogs and burgers. Annually, Disney sells an average of around 10 million burgers and 6 million hotdogs.
Overall this is undoubtedly a smart move by Disney. Any company that hopes to survive the shift in consumer demands will do well to follow suit. Considering that the entire animal agriculture industry contributes to about 50 percent of all greenhouse gas emissions worldwide, this is a pretty substantial focal point for any company looking to progress in accordance with the Paris climate agreement.