A motion by St Hugh’s JCR to remove beef and lamb from the college’s hall menu has passed by 70 votes to 63, The Oxford Blue has found.
This follows the Student Union’s decision to remove beef and lamb from University canteens, as well as Christ Church College making vegetarianism their default option for student diets.
The motion, proposed by the Environment and Ethics representative of the St Hugh’s JCR, cited that the change would be “very impactful in terms of carbon emissions” and “would save [the college] money since beef and lamb are more expensive meats.” The motion proposes replacing red meat with chicken, “saving 639 kg of CO2 per week”.
Despite concerns that the proposed change would restrict people’s diets, the proposers stated that it “would not be enforcing a lifestyle change on individuals because they are free to eat whatever they please outside of dining hall”, as well as pointing out that beef and lamb are currently only served once a week.
Furthermore, this motion is less restrictive of students’ diets than an entirely meat free day, as some other colleges operate. The motion also suggests a trial period, “subject to change with feedback from students and staff”.
The college responded that it has “recently commissioned a survey on [its] catering provision”, the results of which will be considered to ensure that it can “offer a variety of nutritious and affordable meals”.
However, whether the college dining hall will remove beef and lamb is yet to be seen, and is complicated by the hall serving the JCR, MCR, and staff, as well as the closeness of the vote.