Buddhafield Cafe

Buddhafield Cafe is a not-for-profit festival catering provider offering a varied menu of organic, vegan food, substantially run by a volunteer team. We operate as a Buddhist work-as-spiritual-practice environment at an annual programme of festivals, camping events and large retreats. We have strong environmental ethics. We prefer to use bakers and organic veg suppliers local to the event we are attending, and we use our own custom-built solar power rig and hot water heating system. The Cafe can also provide a sauna, showers, hot tubs, a cinema space, extra geodesic domes and Parthenon tents.

Applications to volunteer with the Buddhafield Cafe at the Buddhafield Festival are open here

Who We Are

Buddhafield Cafe began in the early nineties as a fundraising venture to cover the costs of taking a meditation teaching space to the Glastonbury Festival. It’s grown into one of the largest festival cafés on the circuit, feeding hundreds of people a day with delicious, freshly cooked, organic, vegan food and providing a welcoming haven of warmth and friendliness.

A core team works for Buddhafield and the Cafe all year round; some people join us just for a season, and many dip in and out. Not everyone is a Buddhist or even aspires to be, but everyone contributes to the cafe's ethos.

Work As Practice

Buddhism is not just something practised at shrines or temples; its principles are routinely applicable to daily life. In the Cafe, we encourage the development of awareness at work, mindful actions, speech, and thoughts, and cultivating kind and generous impulses. We encourage our team to meditate, reflect, and discuss the Buddha’s teaching and examine how it applies to the tasks at hand.

Our ethical and environmental policies are a core part of our beliefs: to look after ourselves, those around us and our environment; to treat ourselves, each other and our world with the respect that they deserve, in the understanding that they are not separate.

We keep waste to a minimum by recycling and composting whatever we can. All the food we prepare is fresh, organic and / or fairly traded, bought from local growers and suppliers wherever possible. We wish to support local economies and small businesses, promoting sustainable methods of food production. We usually use ceramic plates, bowls and mugs, metal cutlery or compostable alternatives where necessary. Power for the music and lights in the Café comes from solar panels.

What We Cook

We are well-known for our full, cooked vegan breakfast, soups, and the Buddhafield Coconut Curry—a lightly spiced vegetable curry served with brown rice. On Sundays, a roast dinner is often available.

Thanks to the brilliantly creative cooks who join us, the menu changes daily: it depends on what we have and what we feel like cooking! So our Daily Special might be Baked Marinated Tofu with a Bulgar Wheat Pilaf or Indonesian Stew with Satay Sauce. We always have a variety of salads, generous with toasted seeds, olives and tasty dressings. Our soups are also interestingly different each day, and there is usually fresh, homemade soya yoghurt to go with fruit salad and organic muesli as an alternative to our full, cooked breakfast.

We ensure there are always wheat-free options available and can give assurances on other ingredients, such as yeast or nuts, where relevant. We order a wide range of organic vegetables, salads, herbs, and fruit, as much as possible from local organic growers, to make sure there is an exciting selection for the cooks to choose from. Wholefoods, other cooking ingredients, and our wholly biodegradable cleaning products come from the Essential Trading Co-operative, based in Bristol. They are GMO-free, organic, and fair-trade whenever possible.

Our food and drink are usually served on ceramic plates, bowls, and mugs with metal cutlery, all of which are bought from public recycling centres in Devon. This eclectic design standard may result in your mug, bowl, or plate proving itself a novel talking point!

Our Tents and Structures

Our tents are custom-made by Buddhafield. Canvas-covered, they are based around an extendable Parthenon-shaped aluminium frame. The standard-sized version is 25m x 8.5m, with the busy open-plan kitchen completely in view behind a colourful and inviting counter. The seating area is light and airy, with low-level seating at beautifully painted tables. Colourful rugs cover the floor. A canopy of billowing, sail-like fabric in blues, oranges, golds and pinks creates a warm and cosy yet spacious feeling. The outside is decorated with prayer flags, painted banners, bunting and large colourful flags.

We have a smaller tent that we use as a take-away café for smaller or one-day events. This tent is more versatile, quick, and easy to erect and does not require the large teams we need to run the full shebang (as few as seven people per shift). The menu is simpler, with crêpes, veggie burgers, and baked potatoes served all day.

We can also adapt our set-up to offer a spa garden — complete with sauna, hot tubs, showers and chill-out space — and a cinema.

Insurance, Health & Safety

We are registered with our local authority, Mid Devon District Council, and have full public and employment liability insurance.