This year Wisma Jerman invites to a new event format which is held under the name Hallo, Halle! every month. The format constitutes informal discussions, workshops and presentations and touches on varying hot topics and themes in order to consolidate Wisma Jerman as a cultural institution in Surabaya and reach a broader spectrum of people – young and old – interested in German language and culture. On February 8th 2020 Hallo, Halle! celebrated its premiere with the topic “Vegan Revolution”.
The topic was chosen due to Germany being one of the leading countries at the forefront of the global success of a vegan lifestyle. Despite the notion that besides beer, meat based products like sausages (Wurst) are commonly being associated with Germany, more and more Germans opt to choose a meat-free or animal products-free diet and turn vegan or vegetarian.
The first speaker at Hallo, Halle!, Annabell, is a convinced vegetarian from Germany. She explained that there is a basic distinction between vegan, vegetarian, and flexitarian. Vegans do not consume any animal based products, including milk and egg based products. On the other hand vegetarians leave out meat of their diet but still consume milk and egg based products while flexitarians only drastically reduce their meat consumption, e. g. they eat meat only twice a week.
The reasons for these lifestyle and dietary changes are manifold and range from health considerations to the protection of animals and the environment. During the discussion Annabell explained that a vegan lifestyle can help to prevent cancer, improve digestion and prevent one from gaining too much weight. A film showed the cruelty animals experience during industrialized meat production as it is the standard in most countries in the world nowadays. Annabell explained that by reducing our meat consumption every one of us can actually contribute to saving the lives of some of these animals. Furthermore she went on to elaborate on the enormous ecological footprint industrial meat production leaves on our earth. It is easy to imagine what kind of impact we could achieve if each of us reduced their meat consumption and supported a more humane and ecological friendly approach to meat production.
After a rich discussion, Hallo, Halle! invited all participants to make “Vegane Sommerrollen” (vegan summer rolls) together. This simple healthy dish is based on rice paper filled with a variety of fruits and vegetables and enriched with spices. However, the participants also were encouraged to bring their own toppings and make their own versions of “Vegane Sommerrollen”. 59 people from different backgrounds participated in the premiere edition of Hallo, Halle! and enjoyed the various “Vegane Sommerrollen” creations.