Whangarei's second annual Vegan Expo has been declared a huge success, with more than double the number of people and stalls at the inaugural event.
Organiser Cathy Duffield said more than 1400 people went to the expo at Forum North on Saturday, more than double the number who attended last year's event at Whangarei Intermediate School.
Ms Duffield said there were 52 stalls, compared to 22 last year, with the larger venue enabling more people and stands.
She said the aim was the make the Vegan Expo an annual event and judging by the numbers attending, and stall holders wanting to take part, that support ensured it would continue into the future.
Ms Duffield said punters and stall holders came from Auckland for the event and some great cooking demonstrations, including from MasterChef New Zealand winner Aaron Brunet, and discussions that included US veganism advocate Dr Michael Klaper, from the documentaries Cowspiracy and What The Health.
''We were very happy with how it went. [But] We couldn't have put it on without support. Forum North is expensive to hire and the Whangarei District Council helped out and we got some funding from US-based charity VegFund,'' she said.
Ms Duffield said the increasing number of people attending illustrated there was more public interest in having meat-free food options.
''People are realising that what they consume will have an impact on the environment and animals and many want to know more about it. They may not want to become vegans or vegetarians but want to know what their options are for meat free meals or goods made without animal products in them. And there were plenty of options for them at the Vegan Expo.''