Kentucky Fried nuptials are not what most little girls dream about, but they’re what Alex Bury, animal rights acivist, got for her wedding to fellow activist Jack Norris outside a Toronto KFC.
“[I’d] do it again in a second,” said Bury, Major Gifts Officer for the People for Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA).
The pair chose the unorthodox location to draw attention to PETA’s successful Canadian campaign to get a vegetarian sandwich on the KFC menu in most restaurants, as well as an agreement to start purchasing chicken from suppliers who slaughter their fowl humanely.
On September 11, the pair exchanged rings, danced to a string quartet’s rendition of Paul McCartney’s “Maybe I’m Amazed,” and shared vegan wedding cake with passersby, while the smell of fried bird wafted through the air.
And, of course, the wedding lunch was catered by KFC, featuring their new veggie sandwich.
“I’d pictured something a little more traditional, maybe Alaska, with all my friends and family around. And gourmet food, not fast food,” said Bury.
But the pair, who have both worked on animal rights campaigns for years, saw it as somewhat fitting.
“Some couples get married during a marathon because they’re both runners,” reasoned Bury.
Due to the new, “cruelty-free option” on the menu, PETA has dropped the Canadian end of its “Kentucky Fried Cruelty” campaign, confirmed spokesperson and wedding organizer, Nicole Matthews.
She added that PETA is embracing its former foe in an effort to give the newly added vegan options more attention.
The popularity of vegetarianism in Canada seems to be on the rise – a 2003 report by the American Dietetic Association and Dieticians of Canada pegs Canada’s rate of vegetarianism at four per cent.
The report stated that, “interest in vegetarianism appears to be increasing, with many restaurants and college food services offering vegetarian meals routinely.”
In the U.S., where the vegetarianism rate is only 2.5 per cent of the population, KFCs have not followed Canada’s example, nor has PETA ended its campaign. Perhaps, in Canada, KFC’s meatless sandwich could prove to be more than just a PR stunt. The Canadian Colonel may have simply made a savvy business move.