The Prince George’s County Council signed a resolution proclaiming March 20, 2024 as MeatOut Day in the county. Residents are encouraged to participate by having plant-based meals and restaurants will offer specials.

The resolution aims to raise awareness about the potential health, environmental and ethical benefits of reducing meat consumption. 

The council has produced a fact sheet, noting that a plant-based diet helps prevent and reverse heart disease, increases energy and promotes a longer, healthier life. 

County Councilmember Thomas Dernoga (District 1), who co-sponsored the resolution, commented on the positive impact a plant-based diet can have on people.

“We have heart disease problems, stroke, diabetes and obesity issues,” he said. “And eating a more plant-based diet positively affects all those types of conditions.”

This year marks the county’s first official celebration of MeatOut Day, which is a national initiative of the Farm Animal Rights Movement. The organization launched the event in 1985,  and individuals and communities throughout the country participate. The event carries the hashtag #MeatOut. 

Dernoga hopes people will mark the event by thinking about how their food choices impact not only their own health but the health and well-being of their communities and the environment.

“No one’s asking folks to just give up meat tomorrow,” he said. “But think about how it’s healthier for you and the environment, and nicer to animals to eat more fruits and vegetables. If you don’t care about all that other stuff, you should care about your health.”

Many restaurants are already on board with the initiative, including Laurel’s Love Life Coffee, which is offering 10% off everything on the menu for those using the code word MeatOut, according to café manager Adia Cotten.

“We are participating to show people different alternatives for meat-free,” she said. “It is so important to let people see what options can be.”

Olive on Main, in Laurel, is also offering 10 % off its vegan and vegetarian options, Ashley Hur, general manager, said. 

“We just want to contribute to the community,” Hur said.

Other establishments participating in the event include  NuVegan Cafe, in College Park, and the New Deal Café and Greenbelt Co-op Supermarket, both in nearby Greenbelt.

Dernoga added that businesses interested in participating should email him at for more information and to sign up.