Unity College recently earned a “B” rating for providing healthful student dining options in a report issued by the animal rights group People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals.

The college also received 100 percent satisfaction ratings from students in the group’s Vegan Report Card survey, in part because it offers at least one vegan entrée at every meal, offers nondairy milk, labels vegan entrées, labels vegan desserts, and includes a vegan member on its student advisory board.

Vegan food is defined as free of any animal products such as meat, milk, eggs, or honey; or animal-derived byproducts, such as whey, lard or gelatin.

“Over the past few years, vegan food has exploded in popularity on college campuses nationwide,” according to PETA, which assessed and graded submissions and dining hall menus at thousands of U.S. colleges and universities for its report. “Student demand for delicious, healthy, and cruelty-free vegan foods is bigger than ever, and the colleges and universities in this year’s Favorite Vegan-Friendly College contest have made the grade.”

PETA said surveys by food-service providers show the number of vegetarian college students has risen by more than 50 percent nationwide over the past decade, and that the number of vegan students has more than doubled.

“Eating well and eating sustainably are not mutually exclusive,” said Gary Zane, Unity College dean of student services. “We’re proud to offer our students a range of healthful dining options that are good for them and for the planet, as this honor recognizes.”

Tuesday, March 24, 2015