Most people involved with meat production are familiar with the Meatless Monday campaign, the brainchild of a pro-vegetarian group of health officials attached to the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. Initially launched about 10 years ago, the campaign was at first a thinly disguised bid to solicit “partners” (read, “contributors”) for the school, companies who loved the concept and just happened to be involved in manufacturing of a variety of commercially marketed vegetarian food products.
Since then, the campaign has ratcheted up, along with the rhetoric about meat production causing global warming and the horrors of factory farming and animal abuse.
Now, another new partner has climbed aboard. Sodexo has announced that it is rolling out a Meatless Monday initiative,“in a bid to promote wellness and sustainability,”to more than 2,000 of its clients, following pilot programs at more than 900 U.S. hospitals, according to a company news release.
Sodexo, of course, is a multi-billion dollar foodservice operator that boasts that its mission is to “design, manage and deliver comprehensive service solutions through On-site Service Solutions and Motivation Solutions to create an outstanding experience for the people they serve.”
Talk about a mouthful of marketing-ese.
Among the clients Sodexo says it has recruited to join the meatless Mondays campaign are such organizations as:
- Chicago-based Northern Trust Corporation(formerly Northern Trust Bank, but in the wake of the Wall Street meltdown and bailout, that last term has become a four-letter word), which styles itself as a “global leader in delivering innovative investment management, asset and fund administration, fiduciary and banking solutions to corporations, institutions and affluent individuals” and claims $4.4 trillion in “assets under custody,” whatever that means.
- Toyota USA, which, despite the well-documented safety problems in its automobiles, you’ll be pleased to learn, is “Committed to Putting Our People, Customers & Community First.”
- The federal Department of the Interior, which, you might be surprised to learn, has launched “the most aggressive oil and gas safety and reform agenda in U.S. history” and is “unlocking our nation’s renewable energy potential in unprecedented ways,”is also named as a supporter of Meatless Mondays—although a website search reveals only truly jingoistic story from 1943 about the “hard-working evacuees” at a Japanese-American internment camp in Idaho happily raising “healthy vegetables basking in the shimmery summer sun.”