Thousands turn out for some vegan fun at Stadium of Light

Nevfest3 at the Stadium of Light
Nevfest3 at the Stadium of Light
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Thousands of food lovers turned out as a popular ethical festival made its return to Sunderland.

Nevfest, the North East’s first and now largest vegan festival, took place at the Stadium of Light for the third time. The extravaganza featured over 130 stalls, a dedicated craft fair, a whole floor of kids entertainment including an appearance by comic book hero Iron Man, glitter tattoos, face-painting and circus skills.

This event just keeps on growing and growing

Nevfest creator Gareth Edwards

There were also talks, cinema screenings and cookery demos.

The stalls aimed to highlights how varied a vegan diet can be with hot and cold food on offer including Asian, Mediterranean, raw food, vegan cheese, street foods, sausages and burgers.

Nevfest creator Gareth Edwards told the Echo: “It’s difficult to gauge how many people we have had here today but we had 2,000 last year and I’m sure we’ve more than beaten that number.

“The VIP tickets sold out a month ago and the advanced ticket sales were more than three times last time.

“This event just keeps on growing and growing.

“We’re getting close to capacity in such a big venue even though we’re putting the festival on twice a year.”

One of the stalls promoting its products was Ayni Chocolate, which is the brainchild of Pru Wood.

The company’s confectionary is suitable for those with allergies and gluten free.

“I usually go to festivals which are for people looking for food that they can eat because they’ve got allergies, so this is the first vegan event I’ve been to,” said Pru, who set up the company just six months ago.

“I’ve been surprised by how many people are here and how enthusiastic they are too.”

Already many stalls are booked for Nevfest4, which will be also at the Stadium of Light on November 8 or 15 depending on next season’s football fixtures.