Why PETA Is Calling Out Vanity Fair Over In-N-Out Oscar Party Tradition

After the Oscars ceremony is over, anybody who's anybody in the celebrity world is craving In-N-Out. Refinery29 calls it a "right of passage" for celebrities, with A-listers like Julia Roberts, Nick Kroll, Adele, Beyoncé, Miley Cyrus, Aziz Ansari, Dan Levy, and countless others having been photographed chowing down on the fast food post-show (via People).

Thanks to Vanity Fair's Oscar Party, celebs don't even have to hit the drive-thru to grab a burger, as In-N-Out famously caters the annual bash. Even world-class chef Thomas Keller partook in the tradition in 2017: "Gotta end with @innout #VFOscarParty," wrote Keller in an Instagram caption beneath a photo of him ordering a burger. But not everyone is on board with the trend.

Vanity Fair's 2023 Oscar Party is coming up fast, and PETA is trying to head off the anticipated festivities before they begin. Via a press statement sent to Tasting Table, PETA wrote a letter to Radhika Jones, Editor-in-Chief of Vanity Fair, challenging the outlet to cater this year's event with a local Los Angeles-based vegan food truck instead. The animal rights group suggested choices like Compton Vegan, Hart House, and Wolfie's Hot Chicken. But is PETA calling out Vanity Fair for something larger than just offering its party guests animal products?

In-N-Out should be out, says PETA

In the letter to Radhika Jones, PETA cites the United Nations' advocacy for plant-based diets as a reason to forego In-N-Out Burger this year. In 2019, the U.N. estimated that a large-scale shift toward vegetarianism could reduce global carbon emissions by 8 gigatons each year, reports Time. Roughly 26% of all emissions come from food production, states the BBC, and of that, around 58% comes from animal products.

Refinery29 theorizes that In-N-Out was originally chosen as the unlikely celebrity destination for its popularity in the California zeitgeist. But, according to a study by KCR, California was home to the second-highest vegan population in America in 2021. In the letter, PETA notes that there's been a 3,000% increase in foodies who follow a vegan diet since 2015, many of whom are actors. 

In an interview with Men's Journal, Liam Hemsworth said his decision to go vegan was inspired by fellow actor Woody Harrelson's decades-long championing of veganism. Ironically, Natalie Portman sat down with Vanity Fair to explain the benefits of being vegan in her own life in 2018 — the same year that In-N-Out served more than 1,500 burgers at Vanity Fair's Oscar Party, per BizBash.

This isn't the first time PETA has interceded in the Academy. When dairy company Amul responded negatively to Phoenix's pro-veganism speech at his "Joker" (2019) Oscar-win, PETA took to Twitter to defend the actor's outspoken support of animal rights.