International Vegetarian Union (IVU)
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20th World Vegetarian Congress 1969
Jerusalem, Israel

From the minutes of the Business Meeting at the World Vegetarian Congress, India, December 4, 1967:

It was decided to hold the 20th Congress in Israel in 1969.

From the minutes of the Executive Committee, London, May 1968:

Apologies: The Secretary said that he . . . did not know why Mr Pick, who had been invited as Representative of the Israeli Organising Committee was absent.

Israel Congress 1969: After a careful and lengthy discussion and taking into account the feelings of other friends with very great regret it was unanimously agreed that the Israel Congress should be postponed in view of the situation in Israel which has developed adversely since the Congress had been agreed, with the possibility of war erupting at any time. It was felt that responsibility could not be taken for encouraging delegates to take the ....... a cancellation nearer to the ............ [remainder illegible]

Later minutes from 1968 have been lost, presumably they changed their minds.... the following is from The British Vegetarian, March/April, 1969 (full page advert):


Plans have now been finalised for the 20th World Congress proposed to be held in Israel from 2nd to 16th November, 1969. Cheap group air travel is available to and from Israel (Tel Aviv) via London (Heathrow), Zurich and other airports.

Individual inclusive costs are expected to be from 115 guineas for 14 days to 145 guineas for 28 days.

Messrs. Peltours Tourist Service, who have such excellent facilities in Israel, were commissioned last year by the I.V.U. to make the necessary arrangements. They have now had a supply of illustrated brochures printed, giving all particulars relating to air travel, accommodation, sightseeing etc. A copy of the brochure is obtainable on request from Peltours, 29 Duke Street, London, W.1. (Telephone: 01-935-9943).


2nd - 8th November. - Arrival at Lod Airport (Tel-Aviv). Thirty-mile coach journey to Jerusalem. Seven days at Jerusalem, including most of four for vital business sessions on Soil, Nutrition, Naturopathy, delegates' reports, SCIVU, IVU Committee and A.G.M. Sandwiched sightseeing tours of old Jerusalem and its religious places, a Mayoral reception, Israeli folklore and dancing, banquets, home hospitality etc.

9th - 16th November - on leaving Jerusalem, visits will be made to many well-known places, including Schechem, the Valley of Jezreel, Nazareth, Cana, Galilee, Tiberias and Amirim. There will be an overnight stay at a Kibbutz Guest House.

Visits will also be made to Safad, Acre and Haifa. Several days at Natanya, a coastal resort, will provide opportunities for many other excursions. The weather will still be delightful and it will be possible to enjoy swimming. Vaccination will not be necessary.


Those who definitely wish to attend this Congress should contact the General Secretary at once, giving their full names and addresses clearly, and their preferences for the grade of accommodation, whether they wish to share or not, their diet, i.e. vegetarian/vegan, and their proposed mode of travel. A deposit of £25 will be required well in advance and the balance by 20th September. This should be sent when requested by Official Letter, but until then prospective delegates will be kept in touch by succeeding circulars and notices in the Magazine.

Please send details as requested to: Mr. B.J. Gunn-King, The Hon.General Secretary, International Vegetarian Union, "Shanmar," 11 Old Ballymoney Road, Ballymena, Co.Antrim, N.Ireland (U.K.). (Tel: Ballymena 2729)

Regional, National and Local Secretaries arranging groups in their respective countries are requested to immediately contact the General Secretary, through whom final bookings must be made.

From The Humanitarian and Vegetarian World Forum, July-Sep., 1969

20th International Vegetarian Union Congress, 1969

THE Marquis de St. Innocent, President of the I.V.U., has asked us to give our readers the following information :-

In appreciation of outstanding contributions made by the Lady Dowding and her dedicated co-workers to the vegetarian cause, the International Vegetarian Union is offering two "Beauty Without Cruelty Youth Prizes" to be awarded at the forthcoming I.V.U. World Congress in Israel next November. First Prize of one hundred dollars for the best expression of the humanitarian ideal in three words. Second Praize, fifty dollars.

Typical examples of the ideal in three words: Mahatma Gadhi's "Renounce and Enjoy," Dr. Albert Schweitzer's "Respect for Life," and best of all Lady Dowding's "Beauty without Cruelty." In case of duplications the prize will go to the contestant who first sends in his reply to Mr. Brian Gunn-King, Honorary Secretary General, I.V.U., Shanmar, 11 Ballymoney Road, Ballymena, County Antrim, N. Ireland, U.K. The prizes will be voted upon by the assembled delegates at the Israeli Congress. To qualify for these two prizes you must be less than 31 years old.

A third prize of twenty five dollars will be awarded to the first vegetarian, regardless of age, whi correctly guesses the name of the person who invented the three-word phrase, "Nostalgia for Perfection."

A small advert appeared in the July/August issue of The British Vegetarian:

There is still time to book for the

2ND - 16TH Nobember 1969

For full details please contact the officially appointed agents:

Telephone: 01-935 5500

A couple of years later Peltours Ltd were offering a variety of specialist vegetarian holidays via the same magazine. The above was repeated in the September/October issue which also printed another full-page ad., giving different contact info:


The International Vegearian Union's
2 -16 November

Take advantage of this fine opportunity to attend the 20th Congress in the historic capital city of Jerusalem.

Important Business Sessions on such subjects as Food and Soil, Healthy Way to Live, S.C.I.V.U., Youth Forum, Society Reports will be considered at the General Assembly of I.V.U.

There will alsobe a reception by the Mayor of Jerusalem; a visit to the Israel Museum; a banquet; a musical evening and city tours.

Sightseeing tours will be available to Jericho, the Dead Sea, Nazareth, Sea of Galilee, Acre, Tel Aviv, Eilat, Beersheba, Massada and Kibbutz settlements.




After all these big adverts, subsequent issues of The British Vegetarian made no mention of the Congress whatsoever. This was after a decade of entire issues devoted to each Congress. The next Congress, in 1971, was fully reported as usual - we currently do not know why this one was missed and have no further information about the 1969 Congress as the minutes of the business meetings are also missing from an otherwise almost complete set since 1955.

Mr Brian Gunn-King was present at the 2002 World Vegetarian Congress, held in Edinburgh. He confirmed to the IVU Webmaster that the Congress did go ahead.

Jashu Shah, IVU Reginal Co-ordinator for Asia, who has attended Congresses since 1957 has also confirmed that the 1969 Congress went ahead, but he says that only about 90 people attended - presumably many were hesitant about visiting the country because of the unstable political situation.

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