Worker backlash in Germany has reportedly seen major car manufacturer Volkswagen pull back on its wurst vegan policies.
The corporation had reportedly stopped selling meat dishes, including meat-based sausages, in its high-rise office building in Wolfsburg in 2021, replacing them with vegan, vegetarian and fish dishes instead.
Such a policy banning meat has since been reversed, with a spokesman for the company saying that the move was in response to worker demand.
“Following the wishes of the workforce, the company restaurant … has been offering an additional component with fish or meat in addition to vegan and vegetarian dishes since August 7,” the spokesman said.
Initially imposed by the company in response to employee demands for “sustainability”, the ban on meat resulted in a significant backlash within Germany, with politicians wading in to criticise the move.
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— Brussels Signal (@brusselssignal) August 7, 2023
Much of the controversy centred around the ban affecting the sale of Volkswagen’s currywurst, a type of sausage that has been produced by the company at the Wolfsburg plant since 1973.
Listed as VW part 199 398 500 A, the sausage has become extremely popular and can be bought at various supermarkets throughout the country.
“Currywurst with fries is one of the power-bars of the skilled production worker,” former German Chancellor Gerhard Schröder said regarding the VW sausage after the imposition of the 2021 ban.
He went on to lambast the prohibition, saying that while he tried to eat vegetarian sometimes himself, the idea of “no currywurst” was a step too far.
Volkswagen has clarified that the reversal is not a complete walkback on the company’s pro-vegan agenda, with the firm only reintroducing one rotating meat dish back into the vegan-dominated menu.
As such, the famous currywurst will only be available in the canteen on some days, with alternative meat dishes available on others.
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— Brussels Signal (@brusselssignal) August 8, 2023