Around the Globe with Meatless Monday: India

August 20th, 2018

Meatless Monday is a global movement with a simple message: one day a week, cut the meat. Our partners and ambassadors are in over 40 countries pioneering the way, sharing the Meatless Monday message with their communities. After visiting with Israel and the U.K., we’re off to South Asia!

Mother India! It’s a country with the 2nd largest population on the planet and more vegetarians than the rest of the world put together. Historically, Indian cuisine is influenced by Hinduism’s observance of a meatless diet but it’s also known for introducing strong flavors like cinnamon, cardamom, ginger, and turmeric. Let’s get the latest news on how India is still leading the way to change the world’s taste buds.

Advika Gupta, the founder of Meatless Monday India, lives in Bangalore, in southern India, and graduated from Stanford University in 2016. She remembers the first time she came across Meatless Monday, it was when students on campus asked her to sign a pledge. “At the time, I had little knowledge or awareness, but the well-researched argument on “Why Monday?” was intriguing enough to make me sign the pledge!” she says.

Advika Gupta. Photo by Keshav Singh/Hindustan Times.

As a Meatless Monday global partner, Advika has been busy! She recently launched the Meatless Monday campaign on her website, where she also educates and brings a voice to veganism. She explains, “India has a large vegetarian population, and is amongst the lowest consumers of meat worldwide. Unfortunately, the rate of meat consumption here is rapidly on the rise.”

Her efforts have been lauded by the Hindustan Times and featured on BIG FM 92.7.

She conducts workshops on vegan cooking and has been connecting with vegan restaurants across the country to promote Meatless Monday and share our resources, including Raw Straw in Bangalore and Terrassen Café in Hyderabad. In early August, she launched the first corporate awareness campaign for healthy eating and Meatless Monday India with the employees of HP Services Company also in Bangalore.

Advika graciously shared a recipe from her country for a rich and flavorful rice dish, explaining “Biryani is a traditional dish usually made with chicken or lamb. However, vegetarian biryani is absolutely delicious and really wholesome! Most ingredients can be substituted depending on local availability.”

Are you interested in launching Meatless Monday in your country? Download our Meatless Monday Global Guide and become part of the movement! The guide has everything you need to get started and helps you form relationships with organizations in your community. It contains useful steps, scientific research, and links to additional graphics and tools. The science is backed by The Johns Hopkins Center for a Livable Future, which leverages research to build a healthier food system. Be sure to tell us about your progress at

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