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Wednesday, June 30, 2010

International Vegetarian Union

Happy Cow, the subject of yesterday's post, is a member of the International Vegetarian Union.

Based in Britain, the IVU is a huge organiation with a long history.

The International Vegetarian Union is a growing global network of independent organizations which are promoting vegetarianism worldwide.

Origins

The International Vegetarian Union (IVU) was founded in 1908 when the first World Vegetarian Congress was held in Dresden, Germany. The idea for IVU came from the French Vegetarian Society, the first Congress was organised internationally by the British Society and locally by the Dresden Society with support from the Deutsche Vegetarier-Bund. Since then a series of World Congresses have been held all around the world, and in 2008 IVU returned to Dresden for the Centenary 38th Congress. See the list on the right and full details at The History of IVU.

Membership

The International Vegetarian Union is a non-profit making organisation.

• Full Membership is open to any non-profit organisation whose primary purpose is to promote vegetarianism and is governed exclusively by vegetarians.
• Associate Membership is open to any non-profit organisation which advocates vegetarianism.
• A Supporter of IVU may be any individual, family or organisation that supports the aims and objectives of IVU, regardless of whether they are vegetarian or not.

For the purpose of membership of IVU, vegetarianism includes veganism and is defined as the practice of not eating meat, poultry or fish or their by-products, with or without the use of dairy products or eggs.


Objectives

The aim of the IVU is to promote vegetarianism throughout the world. In order to achieve this aim the main objectives are:

• To encourage the formation of local, national and regional vegetarian organisations, and co-operation between them.
• To promote both World and Regional Vegetarian Congresses to publicise and develop interest in the vegetarian cause and to give opportunities for vegetarians to meet together.
• To raise funds to support member societies wherever possible.
• To encourage research into all aspects of vegetarianism and the collection and publication, in all media, of material on all aspects of vegetarianism, by IVU itself and by all member societies.
• To represent the vegetarian cause on appropriate international bodies and to speak on behalf of the global cause when appropriate.

If you seriously want to persue these interests, the IVU is having it biannual World Vegetarian Congress in Jakarta, Indonesia from October 1-6, 2010. American readers may want to wait until 2012 when it will be held in San Francisco.

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