The new Mayor of Turin Chiara Appendino has recently unveiled plans to create Italy’s first vegetarian city.
The proposal is due to be phased in within the next five years, which involves introducing a weekly meat-free day, a ‘veg map’ for tourists to source vegan and vegetarian hotspots and lastly an education scheme which will provide insight for young children on issues such as, animal welfare, nutrition and climate issues. It does not suggest meat will be banned; rather, that vegetarian options will be scaled.
The city of Turin has often been recognised for its rich culinary culture, with particular reputation for its meaty Alpine dishes. However, the change in attitudes toward veganism and vegetarianism stems from altering opinions on health and climate change.
According to the Italian Research Institute Euripses, 1% of the Italian population are vegan in 2016. This is a 0.4% rise from the previous year - which is one of the fastest rates of change in the world. In Turin alone, there are now more than 30 vegan or vegetarian restaurants offering a diverse range of meat-free options.
Influences from local grassroots organisations, notably the Slow Food Movement, have also had considerable effects on attitudes.
Currently, the livestock industry creates almost a fifth of all greenhouse gases and uses 30% of all land. Despite opposition from the Butchers Association, the proposal seeks to reaffirm the necessity to cut down meat consumption and work to adhere to the Paris Climate Agreements for a more sustainable future.