So as mentioned on Monday, PETA was asking the Larry Lucchino and the Red Sox organization to add some more vegetarian options on Fenway’s menu. Well, I finally got a response from Fenway and from Aramark Food Services.
Public Affairs manager, Marty Ray, for the Boston Red Sox responded to my request for a comment yesterday and said, “In order to provide the ultimate game-day experience, our menus constantly evolve to reflect fan feedback while featuring ballpark favorites and regional tastes. At Fenway Park, the menu includes something for everyone, including vegan, vegetarian, gluten-free, and kosher options. Fenway Park also accommodates fans with peanut allergies by providing “peanut-controlled” seating.”
Ok. So does that mean there’s no chance that the Red Sox will meet with PETA or will they even consider adding more options?
“As I mentioned in my earlier response, our menus constantly evolve to reflect fan feedback while featuring ballpark favorites and regional tastes. In this instance and in all cases, we welcome fan feedback as we work with our concession partner, Aramark, to continue to look at ways to enhance our menus and offer fans the ultimate game day experience.”
Alright. Well, what about Aramark? Aramark is not only are they the concession partner for the Red Sox, but they work with the Philadelphia Phillies and Citizens Bank Park was voted the #1 Vegetarian Friendly Ball Park in 2009. I was able to speak to Dan Smith, Communications Manager at Aramark and asked Dan had Aramark tried to talk to the Red Sox about adding a veggie burger or any other vegetarian options to their menu?
His response: “We recognize the important role food plays in the total game day experience and our goal is to design a menu that offers something for everyone at every level of the ballpark. In addition to working closely with our partners, we conduct fan research to ensure our dining options reflect popular tastes and regional flavors.
At Fenway Park, we are constantly looking for ways to improve and expand an already robust menu that features the iconic Fenway Frank, clam chowder, lobster rolls, gluten-free items, Kosher options, carved sandwiches, salads and fruit cups, and seating for fans with peanut allergies.
We welcome fan feedback as we continue to looks at ways to enhance our menus and offer fans the ultimate game day experience.”
Now, I’ve looked at Fenway’s menu numerous times and there’s no mention of salads at all. Unless “Healthy Options” is another name for salad and by the way, what is in the “Healthy Options” meal? Why is it such a secret?
After getting these responses, I decided to go back to Chris Holbein from PETA and see what he had to say about it. He didn’t disappoint! “We’re glad to hear that the Red Sox are at least considering vegetarian fans, but a bag of peanuts and a salad isn’t much of a meal. We’d love to work with the Sox (as we have with other MLB teams) to add at least a veggie burger or veggie dog. Otherwise, with more and more restaurants in the Boston area offering delicious, hearty vegetarian meals, animal-friendly and health-conscious Sox fans might start enjoying meals elsewhere before or after the game. The Sox would lose that concession revenue, and they’ll need every penny if they hope to re-sign Beckett next winter.”
While working on this piece, I spoke to my dad, Hank, about it. Now Hank is a former meat cutter and a man who loves a good steak and even he thought it was stupid that Fenway didn’t have a veggie burger on the menu. I know there’s a lot of people who don’t like PETA or what they stand for, but they have a point. There should be more options and it’s unfair that there aren’t. So if you agree, make sure to send a note to Larry Lucchino and who knows, maybe they’ll listen. Good luck to PETA.