If you didn’t have smashed avocados for brunch, did you even have brunch?
Our love of the humble green food stuff has permeated all areas of our lives from our Insta feeds to our breakfast plates, but while many couldn’t imagine living without the fruity fave, a number of hipster cafes have begun removing avocados from their menus due to environmental concerns.
The Wild Strawberry Cafe, in Buckinghamshire, took Instagram to explain its decision to go avo-free.
“Dear customers, we have some news for you,” the post began. “As of today, we will no longer be serving avocado in the yurt. This. Is. Not. A. Joke.”
“Controversial? Absolutely … we’re as acquainted as the next person to our weekly intake of smashed avocado toast but this is something we have thought long and hard about.”
The cafe cited various reasons behind the decision to ban the green stuff, including seasonality, the distance the avocados travel when they’re imported and sustainability.
The post goes on to explain that the cafe sources the vast majority of its ingredients locally and so the inclusion of avocados on the menu when they’re sourced from so far away didn’t sit well with their ethos.
According to a food mileage calculator, the average avocado travels 4,402 miles before it’s smashed and spread on our toast.
Growing worries over climate change also played a role in the cafe’s decision, because it doesn’t seem environmentally friendly to transport avocados in planes coming from Central and South America, when they can source alternatives nearby.
“The western world’s obsession with avocado has been placing unprecedented demand on avocado farmers, pushing up prices to the point where there are even reports of Mexican drug cartels controlling lucrative exports,” the cafe continued on Instagram.
“Forests are being thinned out to make way for avocado plantations. Intensive farming on this scale contributes to greenhouse emissions by its very nature and places pressure on local water supplies.”
The cafe certainly isn’t the only one to make the bold decision to ban avocados. Earlier this year, Tincan Coffee Co in Bristol also announced that it would be removing the fruit from its menu.
According to the cafe owners the reason behind the move is a growing knowledge of the negative environmental impact of farming avocados.
They site undesirable cultivation methods including using vast amounts of water to farm the fruit and illegal deforestation to make room for it.
“We love an avocado, particularly when it is on sourdough with an egg, but the ethics behind running a café have always been important to us,” co-founder Adam White told Bristol Live.
“Serving avocados, knowing the huge socio-economic impact that avocado farming is having in Mexico and California just didn’t feel right.”
And back in 2017 London restaurant Firedog also revealed it had gone guac-free.
“Our mission is to reinvigorate the morning dining scene in London, which has done avocado to death, and we’re frankly bored of seeing it on every breakfast and brunch menu,” executive head chef George Notley told the Independent.
“The ever-evolving cooking methods used in Aegean street food inspired us to create a colourful menu rich in interesting flavours and fresh ingredients. All without an avocado in sight!”
But will the banning of the brunch-fave cause our love of it to wane?
Recent stats revealed the avocado was the fastest-growing food or drinks trend of 2016 in the UK, with fans spending £50million more on it compared to the year before.
So though the environmental efforts of the cafes are to be admired, for some it will likely take a little more to smash their addiction.
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