There is nothing more quintessentially British than strawberries and cream at Wimbledon. This treat is the tennis tournament’s signature dish and has been served from its inception in 1877. The iconic trademark dish to be served up to tennis fans at this year’s two-week-long championships due to start on Monday 1st July will have a vegan option. Yes, one of Britain’s instantly recognisable institutions and favourite treats is going to have a vegan choice.
Tennis fans can now choose a range of animal-friendly foods from the menu while relaxing in the glorious surroundings of the Championships, Wimbledon in London SW19. They will be offered vegan cream, made with soya to accompany their strawberries which as ever will be coming from the same Kent farm which has been providing the strawberries for nearly 30 years.
The head of food and drink at Wimbledon, Anthony Davies said the Championships wanted to ensure that its menus were as “relevant” as possible.
The movement towards Vegan foods was launched a few years ago by PETA who broadcasted the issue and began to serve strawberries and vegan cream outside the Wimbledon stadium. This prompted the All England Lawn Tennis & Croquet Club to make a positive change.
Wimbledon might be viewed as a deeply traditional part of the British summer calendar, but the championships are keen to move with the times. Recognising the trend for the public’s desire to consume animal-free products, the Championships have brought in this symbolic and important change. It is a statement of the way things are changing.
Wimbledon’s commitment to sustainability
Quite simply, Wimbledon is iconic and wants fans to perceive it as such. This annual tournament is watched by millions of sports fans live and on television. This is a brand: one that Wimbledon wants fans to believe in. For this reason, the tournament partnered with the sustainability policies of the London Borough of Merton in which it is located back in 2013. Sustainable Merton is helping the Championships with its policies for sustainability and social responsibility for the environment. The policies embrace reducing air pollution, energy use and food poverty within London. The All England Club is embracing environment-friendly policies to lower carbon emissions from the grounds.
Providing vegan strawberries and cream is an extension of the Club’s modernising and adds a level of consistency in what it stands for.
At 132 years old, the Wimbledon Tennis Championships are one of the oldest sporting events in the world. It is one of the four main grand slam tennis tournaments.
With all the food outlets at Wimbledon, whether it be kiosks or food trucks now showcasing vegan options on their menus, Wimbledon has in 2019 truly embraced the vegan trend.
The former Wimbledon champion, Novak Djokovic, one of the seeds in the Men’s Championships this year, is one of the co-producers of The Game Changers. This documentary which opens on 6th September 2019 highlights the trend for elite athletes to fine-tune their athletic performance with a vegan diet. “You are what you eat!” has real resonance when it comes to tennis players. With this change by the tournament organisers, a little bit of that will be rubbing off on the fans too.