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  • Beyond Meat KFC Nuggets Have Arrived

    Beyond Meat KFC

    In 2019, Kentucky Fried Chicken began testing a plant-based chicken alongside Beyond Meat. Their first release in Atlanta, GA, was so popular that it sold out within five hours. After this success, KFC expanded its testing to include 70 additional locations around Nashville and Charlotte. 50 more sites were added in California later in the year. All were wildly successful and sold out quickly.

    Beyond KFC Goes Nationwide

    Now, the wait for the rest of the United States is finally over. On Monday, January 10, 2022, Kentucky Fried Chicken released a plant-based Beyond Meat chicken option in all of its’ 4,000 locations nationwide.

    For a limited time, KFC will be offering Beyond Fried Chicken. Consumers can buy the plant-based chicken nuggets in 6 pieces or 12 pieces a la carte, or you can opt for the combo meal, which includes their plant-based Secret Recipe Fries and a medium drink. Sales will determine if it becomes a permanent menu item.

    The company states that while the recipes for Beyond Fried Chicken and the Secret Recipe Fries are fully vegan, the way they are prepared may not be. For now, the plant-based products are fried in shared fryers, which increases the possibility of cross-contamination with meat and animal by-products.

    The Plant-Based Revolution

    Beyond Meat already has numerous products in thousands of grocery stores and restaurants. The KFC launch marks “the first — and biggest —nationwide rollout of plant-based poultry at a major chicken chain.” Earlier this year they also partnered with Panda Express to release a vegan orange chicken. The Beyond Meat orange chicken was introduced in 70 test locations across ten states. If the plant-based option continues to do well, Panda Express has plans to add the item to its more than 2,000 locations nationwide.

    Kentucky Fried Chicken is not the only restaurant chain owned by Yum! Brands to partner with Beyond Meat. Pizza Hut launched a pizza topped with Beyond Meat’s Italian sausage nationwide in 2020. In 2021, they launched Beyond Pepperoni at 70 locations across five cities. Taco Bell has been working with Beyond Meat to develop new plant-based products for its menu.

    Beyond Meat is also partnering with McDonald’s. Over the last three years, the two companies have been working to develop the McPlant platform. Plant-based menu items could include chicken, bacon, and breakfast sandwiches. Their first release, the McPlant burger, is being tested at eight United States locations.

    The Future Is Green

    These partnerships are “a sign of the fast-food sector’s continued interest in plant-based meat alternatives.” Kevin Hochman, CEO of KFC, has this to say: “We do think that ultimately this idea of more and more plant-based protein being consumed is a fait accompli. It’s going to happen; it’s really about when.” Plant-based options are steadily becoming more and more popular in the food and restaurant industry, and many companies, Beyond Meat included, are stepping up to the challenge.

    And it isn’t just fast-food chains that have begun adding more plant-based options. Just this week, AMC announced that they would start serving Impossible Meat’s Impossible Nuggets at most of their theatre locations in January.

     

     

  • How To Stay Vegan Beyond Veganuary

    Stay Vegan after Veganuary

    Veganuary is the perfect opportunity to try a new way of life but can you stay vegan after January is over? A plant-based lifestyle does not have to be daunting. With a little planning and determination it is easy to stay vegan for life. Here are some tips on how to make realistic, long-term changes and keep you on track long after the Veganuary challenge has ended.

    Discover Your Vegan “Why”?

    Everybody has their reasons for going vegan. Some people go vegan to save animals, while others do it for the environment. And some people go vegan for health reasons. Your reason for trying vegan could be a combination of all of these or something else entirely. Try to focus on your “why” when you have a hard time sticking to your new way of life.

    Find Food You Love

    If the main reason you are scared to go vegan is that you are worried you will miss your favorite foods, seek out replacements as soon as possible. We are lucky enough to live in a time where there is a vegan substitute for pretty much anything. A similar tasting vegan product likely already exists. The trick is to give it a try. You may be surprised by how much you enjoy some of the vegan products available. If you can’t find the perfect replacement in a local grocery store, most recipes can be easily veganized. So, don’t be afraid to try these products out in your favorite recipes. Break down your old recipes and find vegan substitutes for the animal-based ingredients.

    Hunt Out Your Vegan Tribe

    Even if none of your friends or family have chosen to join you on your vegan journey, it doesn’t mean you are entirely alone. Social media offers many outlets for those who begin to feel a bit isolated. Seek out like-minded vegans on social media groups or local forums. There are likely local vegan groups in your area that hold events or gatherings. You may find your new best friend.

    Try New Recipes

    We are lucky enough to live in a time where vegan recipes and substitutes are everywhere. One of the best parts about becoming vegan is expanding your food choices beyond what you usually eat. There are an unlimited amount of vegan recipes available online, or you can buy yourself a vegan cookbook or two. Take the time to research plant-based YouTubers and other social media personalities who focus on vegan foods and recipes. Many of these people have already done the legwork for you. All you have to do is decide which things you’d like to try and follow their lead.

    Research The Latest Vegan Products

    Do your research, and don’t be afraid to try new things. New vegan products come out every day. Just because you do not like one doesn’t mean you won’t like them all. Give new products a fair shot and you will soon find your favorites.

     Eat A Well-Rounded Diet

    Contrary to popular belief, vegans consume more than just fruits and vegetables. Many new vegans report feeling weak or hungry when they first try a plant-based diet. Since fruits and vegetables are not as calorie-dense, it is easy for new vegans to under-eat. To avoid this, make sure you have plenty of carbs like rice and potatoes in your diet and lots of nutrient-dense foods like sweet potatoes, beans, nuts, bananas, and dates.

    Plan Your Meals

    Once you have found some recipes you enjoy, make them in bulk. Set aside a specific day to make a handful of plant-based recipes last for the week. You can utilize your freezer to have a quick meal ready on lazy days. Don’t be afraid to try out pre-made vegan meals from the grocery store freezer, as well. On those days when you don’t feel like cooking or don’t have a lot of time, you’ll be glad you have some acceptable options set aside.

    Keep Snacks On Hand

    Staying satiated and full on your vegan journey is the key to long-term success. When you transition to a plant-based diet, you may feel hungry faster than usual as your body adjusts to different foods. We are more likely to make better food choices when we aren’t hungry or in a hurry. Having good snack options available will help you stay on track.

    Treat Yourself To A Night Out

    Many restaurants offer vegan options, and some offer only vegan options. Explore your local restaurants to find some options that you are excited to try. Apps like Happy Cow can help you discover amazing vegan options at local restaurants or when you travel. Most restaurants post their menus online, making it even easier to take your time perusing the menu and deciding if that restaurant has dishes you are interested in trying out.

    Involve Friends & Family

    Lifestyle changes can feel daunting if they make you feel alienated and different from the people you are closest to. After discovering some delicious new recipes, sharing them with your family and friends can be fun. Host a dinner party, game night, or movie night where you can share some of your new favorites.

    Be Kind To Yourself

    Nobody is perfect, so give yourself a break. If you accidentally eat something that is not vegan or slip up from time to time, it’s ok. It happens. Don’t be too hard on yourself. Just dust yourself off and try again. Diet and lifestyle changes are complex. Take your time, remind yourself of your “why,” and do your best.

  • 10 Reasons To Go Vegan For Your Health

    Vegan Health

    There are a variety of reasons that people have when they decide to go vegan. Some people are concerned about the animals, environment, or health. But if you are still on the fence and need some health-based inspiration, here are a few ways going vegan can improve your health in 2022.

    10. You’ll Need Less Medications as You Age

    It is no secret that following a vegan diet can benefit your health. Plant-based diets contribute to an abundance of health benefits such as low blood pressure, low cholesterol, reduced risk of cardiovascular disease, and diabetes. Given this information, it makes sense those individuals following a vegan diet will require fewer medications as they get older. A recent study published in the American Journal of Lifestyle Medicine concluded that participants who consumed a plant-based diet needed to take 58% fewer pills than meat-eaters. This study included data from 328 participants aged 60 and older, proving that the vegan participants required the lowest number of drugs throughout the sample.

    9. You Can Reduce Your Cognitive Decline Risk

    Studies have indicated that a healthy, plant-based diet in mid-life may significantly decrease the risk of developing Alzheimer’s and other types of dementia or cognitive impairment. Fruits, vegetables, and plant-based foods contain elevated levels of polyphenols and other compounds, which could potentially reduce the risk of cognitive decline due to aging.

    8. Decrease Your Risk of Having a Stroke

    Diets high in animal fats are proven to increase the risk of illnesses, including strokes. Diets rich in leafy greens, whole grains, and beans, on the other hand, may lower stroke risk by up to 10%. The healthiest diets also avoid refined grains and added sugars and fats.

    7. Lower Your Risk of Prostate Cancer

    Prostate cancer is the second most common cancer in men. Research has shown that avoiding eggs, dairy, and processed meat could significantly lower your risk of developing prostate cancer. And even after a cancer diagnosis, following a vegan diet can slow the progression of the disease. Individuals following a vegan diet have a 35% lower prostate cancer risk than meat-eaters and vegetarians.

    6. Lower Your Blood Pressure

    Approximately half of adults in the United States are affected by high blood pressure. High blood pressure increases the risk of numerous cardiovascular diseases, including stroke and heart attack. When done correctly, plant-based diets also can lower blood pressure. Multiple studies found that vegetarians tend to have a lower blood pressure than those who eat meat—those who follow a healthy vegan diet experience even better blood pressure benefits. Avoiding meat and dairy products reduce the blood’s thickness, making it easier to pump and lowering blood pressure. Introducing a plant-based diet into your life could lower your blood pressure in as little as two weeks.

    5. A Healthy Gut Increases Your Immunity

    A balanced gut means a healthy immune system and going vegan is great for gut health. When the microorganisms that live in our digestive tracts are balanced they promote healthy digestive tracts, immune systems, metabolism, bowel movements, and appetite regulation hormones. People who eat a balanced plant-based diet have a better gut balance, while meat-eaters have more harmful bacteria. A sixteen-week study with 147 participants showed that vegans in the group experienced weight loss, fat mass loss, and lowered visceral fat levels.

    4. You Can Reduce The Risk Of Heart Diseas

    Coronary heart disease is the leading cause of death worldwide. Processed meat has a high saturated fat content and high sodium content, raising the risk of heart disease. On the other hand, plant-based diets decrease these risk factors significantly. According to a scientific study that followed 1.4 million people over 30 years, meat consumption led to an 18% increase in heart disease risk. 

    3. Prevent or Reverse Type 2 Diabetes

    Type 2 diabetes is becoming increasingly prevalent, especially among older adults. There are approximately 422 million cases of type 2 diabetes worldwide. Vegan diets are an effective way to prevent, manage, or even reverse the deadly disease. Eating a plant-based diet that emphasizes legumes, whole grains, vegetables, fruits, nuts, and seeds and eliminating most or all animal products are especially effective in preventing type 2 diabetes. A study in Slovakia saw plant-based diets reverse type 2 diabetes in 84% of patients.

    2. Decrease Your Breast Cancer Risk

    Researchers have noticed significantly lower cancer rates among people who do not consume meat. Vegetarian diets are second, while vegans appear to have to lowest cancer rate of any diet. Research clearly shows that eating lots of fruits, vegetables, legumes, nuts, and whole grains is linked with lower cancer rates. Plant-based diets also boost fiber consumption which, in turn, decreases the risk of breast cancer in women by as much as 25%.

    1. You Can Age Slowly & Gracefully

    The foods we eat will have profound effects on health and appearance over the years. While nothing can completely halt the aging process, the right foods can slow the process. Studies have shown that diets rich in fruits, vegetables, and nuts can slow aging. Individuals who consume a plant-based diet are physically healthier as they age than those who consume meat. People who eat vegan diets also live longer. Studies refer to so-called Blue Zones like Loma Linda, CA, and Okinawa, Japan, where people have longer-than-average lifespans. What do these places have in common? You guessed it; a healthy, plant-based diet.

    Go Vegan For Your Health

    Vegan diets have many health benefits, while meat-based diets are more likely to cause detrimental effects on health. Many of the population’s ailments could easily be reduced or even eradicated by removing animal products from our diets. Isn’t your health and the health of your loved ones worth fighting for? Going vegan is not as difficult as you might think. Manufacturers constantly introduce healthier substitutes for the meat and cheese you may not want to give up. It is easier than ever to make healthier choices for yourself and your family. 

     

  • Veganuary 2022

    Veganuary.com

    The start of a new year is the perfect time to make changes for the better and to try something new. Have you considered trying vegan? If not, there’s no time like the present, especially since January has become Veganuary. It is the perfect opportunity to try going vegan for a month, with a vast library of resources at your fingertips. And who knows, you may love it so much you decide to stick with it. So, what do you have to lose?

    The first step in your Veganuary journey is to consider what a vegan lifestyle is and why you should give it a go. There is no single right or wrong answer. In general, there are three main reasons people choose to go vegan, and they are all important. You may be inspired by one or all these reasons.

    Going Vegan for the Environment 

    Many people choose a vegan lifestyle to protect the environment. Animal agriculture is a significant contributor to global warmingAnimal agriculture is a significant contributor to global warming, deforestation, air pollution, and more. Even wild animals are affected by the devastating effects of animal agriculture. Natural environments are often destroyed to make way for farmland leaving animals displaced without homes or killing them. Plant-based diets are much easier on the environment and make more sense. Land used and destroyed to raise farm animals could instead be used for crops that could ultimately feed more people.

    Going Vegan for the Animals

    There is no humane way to pursue animal agriculture. Consuming an animal’s flesh causes their death. Even the egg and diary industries hurt animals, and then they are slaughtered after their bodies become exhausted. From the time they are born, they are kept in horrid conditions and mistreated for the duration of their short lives. They suffer daily at the hands of humans. All animals are sentient, feeling beings that want to live just as much as we do. For many people, learning the true plight of farm animals is enough to make them want to leave meat off their plates.

    Going Vegan for your Health

    Study after study has proven that consuming animal products is detrimental to your health. A plant-based diet is proven to improve overall health on many levels. It has been proven that eating vegan can lower cholesterol, blood pressure and reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes. Among other things, they have seen improvement in digestion, sleep, arthritis, and even depression.

    Vegan Support For Veganuary

    Changing your eating habits may seem like a daunting task, but you don’t have to do it alone. Veganuary is an international charity based in England and Wales. They have four overall goals: increasing participation, corporate outreach, raising awareness, and growing the global movement.

    Since 2014, Veganuary has invited people from all over the world to take a 31-day vegan challenge in January. More and more people have taken them up on this offer each year. Over 580,000 individuals participated in the 2021 challenge alone. Many of these participants choose to continue following a vegan lifestyle even after their 31-day challenge is over. But those who do not continue after 31 days are not judged by Veganuary. They are there to offer daily support and advice to help you successfully pursue this challenge and will continue this support if you require it, long after your 31 days are over.

    Veganuary works with the corporate world to encourage the development and production of new vegan products. 2021 saw the launch of more than 825 new vegan products and menus. These make it easier than ever to find vegan substitutes for the animal-based products in your previous diet. “For almost every animal-derived ingredient and product, there is now a vegan alternative, and this means that a vegan meal may look and taste exactly like a non-vegan meal; it just doesn’t come with the animal suffering or the same environmental impact.”

    When you sign up for the Veganuary challenge, you will begin receiving daily support emails for the duration of the challenge. These contain information on products, recipes, and nutrition. You will also find inspiration, encouragement, and facts to guide you through your 31-day vegan journey. Veganuary can walk you step by step through the transition from meat-eater to vegan, whether you plan to be a 31-day participant or a lifelong vegan. If you have ever considered trying a plant-based lifestyle, now is a perfect time to go for it. The new year is a time of resolutions and changes. You will be doing something extraordinary for the environment, vulnerable animals, and yourself.

     

     

     

  • Spring Into MeatOut 2022

    Meatout.org

    On March 20th, we will welcome the first day of spring and MeatOut 2022. For over 35 years, vegans worldwide have promoted compassionate food choices through MeatOut by challenging everyone they know to go meatless for one day with the Meatout Challenge.

    Historically participants have held film screenings, meetups, or potlucks. Cooking demonstrations and vegan food samples at these events have offered many people their first taste of the vegan menu. Since its inception in 1985 by Farm Animal Rights Movement, over 35 million Americans have explored a plant-based diet and reduced their consumption of meat, dairy, and eggs. Food manufacturers and national franchises also offer more vegan options in response to this growing demand.

    There are three main reasons a vegan diet is better than the typical S.A.D (Standard American Diet) model.

    The first reason is that vegan diets improve health and prevent disease. Eating a plant-based diet has also been shown to reduce cholesterol and lower blood pressure for some people in as little as two weeks. It is also easier to maintain a healthy weight, decreasing health risks. A healthy vegan diet promotes health and reduces the risk of illnesses such as heart disease, stroke, diabetes, chronic diseases and cancers that kill millions of humans each year.

    Beyond our health, a plant-based diet is also much easier on the environment than a meat-based diet. “Animal agriculture is the leading contributor of methane and nitrous oxide, two greenhouse gases that are far more powerful than carbon dioxide emissions.”  A plant-based diet uses significantly less water and causes much less pollution.

    Animal agriculture also contributes to the clear-cutting and burning of precious land and rainforests to create pastures. “This is a major loss, because trees provide wildlife habitats, keep topsoil in place, replenish groundwater aquifers, absorb carbon dioxide, and stabilize climate.” Once the land is no longer useful as pasture, it is turned into animal feed croplands. Croplands provide little plant growth to hold fertile topsoil in place, and the ground is ultimately left barren and useless.

    And last but certainly not least, there are the animals, the sentient beings whose lives are stolen to put meat on the plates of people worldwide. Over 10 billion animals are slaughtered every year in the U.S. alone. Many people prefer to put on blinders when it comes to these animals’ short & horrific lives. It is easy to pretend that animals are treated well and “killed humanely.” People prefer to accept the meat industry’s claims that their practices are humane. But, what can be humane about murder? These animals do not willingly offer themselves up as sacrifices for our dinner. They are never given a choice. It is the job of empathetic humans to speak for these beings who cannot speak for or defend themselves.

    “An individual who commits to eating a vegan diet for just one day would spare the life of .5 animals, preserve 148 square feet of rainforest, and save 3,700 gallons of water.” March 20th, 2022, has been proclaimed “MeatOut Day” in numerous cities, states, and countries as residents are urged to skip the meat and explore vegetarian and vegan options. MeatOut day is a perfect time to try delicious meat and cheese alternatives. New plant-based products are added to the market every day, and any vegan would be happy to share their favorites with you.

    “There are few benefits of eating animals other than fueling an industry that generates profits from promoting devastating illnesses, environmental destruction and the exploitation of sentient beings. As for local businesses and restaurants, MeatOut Day is if anything an opportunity to showcase a variety of options and versatility in adapting to a changing world.”

    A shift from meat-based to plant-based is inevitable. Ultimately, going vegan is the best option for our health, planet, and animals. Make a plan for MeatOut 2022 and make a difference for the billions of animals who suffer and die each year in the animal agriculture and dairy industries.

  • Switch4Good “Brandjacks” Starbucks

    Switch4Good.org

    Since the early 2000s, the ever-expanding coffee empire Starbucks has offered a soy milk alternative for patrons who will not or can not drink dairy. In 2015 they also began expanding their dairy-free menu options to include coconut, almond, and oat milk. And in 2020, the chain started including a limited amount of vegan and vegetarian offerings on their food menus.

    While it is undeniable that Starbucks was somewhat of a non-dairy pioneer for offering a cruelty-free option long before most chains even considered them, unfortunately, their milk alternatives have always come at an added price to consumers.

    Over the years, many campaigns by activists and organizations alike have asked Starbucks to drop their high fees for dairy-free options, all to no avail. It seemed that it didn’t matter how many petitions consumers created or signatures gathered; nothing could get the attention of the coffee giant until Switch4Good, that is.

    Switch4Good is an evidence-based nonprofit founded by Team USA Olympian Dotsie Bausch. Bausch founded the organization in response to her frustration with the dairy industry’s infiltration of the Olympic Games. She struck back at big dairy by gathering a film crew and a team of dairy-free Olympians to create a response to the dishonest pro-dairy campaigns.

    Since its founding, Switch4Good has successfully lobbied to have soy milk recognized as a nutritional equivalent to milk and are now working to provide access for schools to and reimbursement for soy milk. Members have also testified on Capitol Hill to support their petition to remove dairy from the USDA Dietary Guidelines for Americans.

    In December of 2021, Switch4Good devised a plan to get Starbucks’ attention. They joined forces with the Yes Men – who have “used humor and trickery since 1996 to highlight the corporate takeover of society” to launch a self-proclaimed undercover “brandjacking” campaign titled “Starbucks Cares.” The Starbucks Cares campaign would appear to promote a new Starbucks campaign that featured a new product named the “Justice Cup.”

    It all began with a fake press release that appeared to originate from Starbucks, which included a link to a high-quality campaign video and spoof website StarbucksCares.com informing users that “For over 50 years Starbucks has strived to bring us closer together. But did you know that the milk we drink is tearing us apart?”

    The campaign material stated that a vast percentage of the world’s population could not digest dairy, and most dairy intolerance affects BIPOC individuals. The video said that this revelation inspired Starbucks to work to bring us closer together by decreasing the cost of plant-based milk and increasing the cost of dairy-based milk to combat “dietary racism.”

    “Dietary racism is a social construct built by a racial majority that assumes the food the majority consumes affects other races and cultures in the same way. This mindset often leads to actions that are meant to enhance the health of the majority at the (often unintended) expense of the minority. Dietary racism is often an unconscious bias.” (switch4good.org)

    Approximately 65% of the world’s general population is lactose intolerant. When you divide that number by race, you see that a disproportionate number of BIPOC (up to 95%) fall into that category compared to white/Caucasian individuals (15%). Switch4Good states that charging extra for dairy-free options is a prime example of dietary racism.

     

    As seen in the “Starbucks Cares” video above, the campaign suggested that Starbucks discriminated against these individuals by adding an up-charge to any non-dairy milk requests. Switch4Good’s Justice Cup campaign successfully sought to bring this problem to light. In addition to launching an online campaign, Switch4Good also sent undercover team members into select Starbucks stores to “redeem” realistic-looking discount vouchers for the non-dairy up-charge. The resulting videos were quite entertaining.

    They let the campaign grow long enough to ensure that Starbucks had seen the announcement before issuing a spoof denial. Finally, Switch4Good released a campaign reveal video to claim responsibility for the “brandjacking” and explain their rationale. In addition, Switch4Good released an education Dietary Racism Explainer video and made many calls to Starbucks Customer Service, requesting that they discontinue the non-dairy up-charge.

    While the fate of the non-dairy up-charge in Starbucks stores across the United States remains unknown, it is clear that Starbucks UK is now listening. Beginning on January 5, 2022, all UK Starbucks locations will be dropping their non-dairy up-charge. Considering that milk is the main factor in Starbucks’ overall global footprint, dropping the up-charge will also aid Starbucks UK in its goal to become a resource-positive company by 2030. Removing the extra charge allows customers to make more climate-positive choices without additional costs.

    In addition, Starbucks UK plans to continue expanding plant-based options to their food and drink menus. Their “oat platform” includes a blonde roast espresso as well as three flavors of oat milk lattes: strawberry & vanilla, honey & hazelnut (not vegan), and dark cocoa & orange.

    New food options will incorporate vegan-friendly lunch and bakery options: a vegan tuna sandwich, pecan & caramel brownie, carrot cake (with an oat-based frosting), and chocolate & caramel muffins. Starbucks customers in the UK will soon indulge in a vegan whipped cream option with all drinks and enjoy sandwiches made with Beyond Meat.

    While Starbucks may appear to be a coffee chain, in reality they sell more milk than java. Each year, Starbucks’ significant environmental impact is compounded by the more than 93 million gallons of dairy milk sold in their stores. Consumer demand for plant-based alternatives in the USA continues to grow despite the U.S. government’s financial support of the fading dairy industry through large, tax-funded subsidies.

    In 2020, a statement by Starbucks CEO Kevin Johnson received public backlash from dairy industry publications when the company’s “sustainability commitment” was released. It included goals for expanding Starbuck’s plant-based options and evolving menus to be more environmentally friendly. “Alternative milks will be a big part of the solution,” Johnson said in an interview with Bloomberg News. “The consumer-demand curve is already shifting.”

    Just as Mr. Johnson stated above, the curve for consumers has already begun to shift towards change. Activist organizations like Switch4Good, FARM, and alike work tirelessly to raise awareness of hidden truths and lies that go unseen. As humanity continues to evolve towards sustainability and compassion, a wide variety of industry insiders estimate that the demand for sustainable, cruelty-free products will increase exponentially in the foreseeable future and beyond.

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

  • Send FARM To World Dairy Expo 2022

    Ditch Dairy World Dairy Expo

    The World Dairy Expo will be happening again on October 2, 2022, and FARM will be there to spread the word about dairy’s inhumane practices. It has been five years since FARM first attended the World Dairy Expo in 2017. The simple message carried on signs, posters, and even a rolling billboard was, “Humane Milk is a Myth: Don’t Buy it.” This message is just as valid today as it was in 2017.

    Ditch dairy and help FARM protest the World Dairy Expo in 2022.During the event, attendees witnessed neglect and abuse, despite a warning that FARM and other activists would be in attendance. Cows were chained to cement walls, forced to stand the event’s entirety. An attendee abandoned a calf in a tiny trailer with only dirty water to drink in one instance. If these maltreatments are visible when the world’s eyes are watching, what is happening behind closed factory doors? 

    Cows make milk to feed their newborn calves, so cows must give birth to produce milk, and this process is far from natural in the dairy industry. First, the cows will be artificially inseminated by a farmer. After the birth, the calf is taken away from the grieving mother. The calf is never allowed any of their mother’s milk. Calves are bottle-fed a supplement formula from day one, so the farmers can harvest every drop of the mother’s milk for profit. For the mother, this process will be repeated over and over until her body gives out. She is slaughtered and sold for meat when she can no longer make milk.

    As for the fate of the calf, that depends upon the sex. Female calves have the same future as their mothers. They will be artificially inseminated, give birth, have their calves stolen, and then hooked up to machines that drain the milk from their bodies. They will endure this process repeatedly until it is time for slaughter, just like their mothers before them. Male calves have a different fate. They are not valuable for the dairy industry since they are not milk producers. Instead, male calves are killed immediately or placed in tiny crates that prevent them from moving and building muscle. Immobility keeps their meat tender. They are slaughtered at a very young age and sold as veal.

    Undercover investigations have revealed cows’ horrible treatment and living conditions in the dairy industry. Videos show workers stabbing cows with pitchforks and screwdrivers, dragging them by the neck with a rope tied to a tractor, and more. Calves are mutilated and abused. Cows are punched and kicked by workers. They spend their short lives confined to small pens or milking stalls.

    While the World Dairy Expo seeks to glorify the dairy industry, FARM and other animal advocacy organizations seek to shed light on the injustices and abuses endured by the animals. The dairy industry claims that animals are treated humanely. They claim that these animals are given a “good” life, and consumers often choose to take the industry at their word. If they do not witness these atrocities firsthand, it is easy to envision an ideal fairy tale dairy farm. They do not have to acknowledge the suffering caused by their choices.

    No matter how humanely dairy farmers claim to treat their animals, the result is always the same. Sooner or later, the cow ends up at the slaughterhouse. Their entire life is spent being used and abused at the hands of humans. There is never a positive outcome or a light at the end of the tunnel for them. They experience only suffering and death. No matter what we are told, there is no such thing as a “good life” for a dairy cow in today’s profit-based industry.

    Animals cannot speak for themselves. They can’t say how much they suffer or beg us for a happy, peaceful life. Bringing the animals’ plight into the open allows consumers to make informed decisions about their food choices. Some people may not mind animals suffering for consumption, but others don’t know what the animals endure. Protesting during events like the World Dairy Expo is one-way organizations like FARM to give these sentient beings a voice.

    If you would like to help FARM send representatives to the 2022 World Dairy Expo, you can support FARM by donating on our website. 

  • Growing Activists With AAM

    In 2021, there were an estimated 79 million vegans worldwide. And out of that 79 million, only around 1% actively advocate for animal rights and welfare regularly. Animal Activism MentorshipAnimal Activism Mentorship, an organization fueled by Farmed Animals Rights Movement (FARM), wants to increase the number of activists fighting for the animals. The organizations hope to create a new generation of activists by offering guidance for those individuals who wish to be more active in the animal advocacy community. AAM’s core goal is “to eradicate the normalization of violence and oppression against all sentient beings by growing a culture of empathy and compassion.” And in turn, Achieve Animal Liberation for all sentient beings.

    Animal Activism Mentorship is a free guidance program that began in 2020. They have fostered numerous aspiring activists through their first protests, animal rescues, street activism demonstrations, and more. When a person signs up with Animal Activism Mentorship, AAM will pair them with a mentor to support their animal activist path. AAM and its mentors provide guidance, education, and community to vegans looking to expand their activism. In addition, the AAM website holds many training videos to address common questions and concerns. Animal Activism Mentorship also regularly hosts educational and informative workshops online via the Zoom platform.

    AAM regularly hosts events both online and in-person. Their fourth in-person event, the Animal Activism Mentorship Atlanta Assembly, will occur on February 19-26 in Atlanta, GA. This eight-day event welcomes activists of all levels and will provide personal mentors for new activists. The event will provide:

    • Education on various forms of animal rights activism.
    • The history of different campaigns.
    • Organize your own actions.
    • The most effective ways to enact change.

    The event page on Facebook states that “Activists of all skill levels will be getting hands-on experience with the pressure campaign tactics, as well as other forms of activism like outreach, vigils, sanctuary visits, etc.” (AAM Atlanta Assembly Facebook Page)

    Some other events by Animal Activism Mentorship’s are happening soon, including:

    • Vigils-Bearing Witness as Activism on January 4, 2022
    • Greenwashing Our Food: Sustainable Labels Won’t Save the Planet on January 13, 2022
    • Establishing an Animal Rights Organization on February 3, 2022, at 7 PM, features guest speaker Alex Hershaft, president and co-founder of Farmed Animal Rights Movement (FARM).
    • Humane Washing Our FoodHumane Washing Our Food: Cage-Free, Free-Range, Humane: What the Labels Really Mean on February 10, 2022

    For more information on joining Animal Activism Membership or attending an event visit their website at animalactivismmentorship.com

     

     

     

     

     

  • Brave New Life Project

    Vegan Farming | Brave New Life Project

    We spend a lot of time talking about the animals who suffer because of industrial animal agriculture. What we do not spend much time thinking about, however, is the human factor involved.

    It is easy to assume that the people in this industry are here because they want to be or have selected this career. While this may be the case in some instances, the truth is that many of the workers in this industry are only here because they feel that they have no other options available to them. 

    Mental Costs of Working At A Slaughterhouse

    Many slaughterhouse workers are prisoners in a sector that takes a massive toll on their mental and emotional health, but they feel they cannot leave because they must provide for their families. Working conditions in a slaughterhouse are abhorrent. The men and women who work in slaughterhouses often suffer from PTSD, depression, and suicidal thoughts. They must disassociate themselves from what they are doing when they are at work. 

    Daily, they look these gentle animals in the eye before taking their lives. Their noses are persistently filled with the stench of blood and feces and go home covered in blood. Most workers bring three changes of clothes with them each day. They change clothes throughout the day and change into clean clothes before they leave at the end of the day but despite their best efforts, most carry this trauma home with them. 

    “A massive statistical analysis found that after controlling for many variables (including poverty and immigration,) counties with slaughterhouses have four times the national average of violent arrest, with significantly higher rates of alcoholism, domestic abuse, child abuse and suicide.”

    Yet they stay. Not because these people love their job, but because they believe this is the only job they can get. They see this job as the only way they can take care of their families. And they suffer in silence for fear of losing that job. The fear also extends to legal repercussions or even deportation. 

    The meat-processing industry is widely known to hire undocumented workers who go unprotected by minimum wage laws or fair work standards. Also, “Ag-gag laws currently exist in six states, penalizing whistleblowers who investigate the day-to-day activities of industrial farms, including the recording, possession or distribution of photos, video and/or audio at a farm.” 

    Brave New Life Project Creates Change in Colorado

     

    For meat processing industry employees in Colorado, this is where the Brave New Life Project comes in. The Brave New Life Project aims to help workers who wish to transition out of the animal-agriculture industry. 

    The Brave New Life Project program is designed to assist animal agriculture employees through necessary steps to explore all their options and transition their way out of the industry. Many of these employees are unaware of the potential options available to them or believe they lack the skills to fill any other job. Often, they think that no one else will hire them or fear repercussions for even attempting to find other employment.

    Farmworkers are severely underpaid and under-represented. The legal protections that cover most employees throughout the country under the Fair Labor Standards Act do not apply to workers in the animal agriculture industry. “The exclusion of farmworkers from labor laws dates back to 1938 and the passing of the Fair Labor Standards Act, or FLSA. Owing, according to Loyola University Chicago research, to racism from some Congressmen, farmworkers (at the time, primarily Black) were at first wholly excluded from labor protections such as a minimum wage. 

    Today, many of these gaps remain: there is no federal provision for overtime pay (standard in other industries), the right to unionize (ditto), and even lower minimum age requirements (despite agriculture being a dangerous industry).”

    Brave New Life Project is a community-based project that partners with Colorado businesses and organizations to provide free employment services, mental health services, and educational programs to anyone wishing to transition out of industrial animal AG or breeding jobs. They offer one on one job coaching, resume help, interview prep, and more. The organization works to create a customized plan for each individual based on their needs and circumstances. The Brave New Life Project will even search for jobs for the transitioning employee, allowing them to continue their current position until their new job has is found.

    Helping Workers Escape Slaughterhouse Jobs

    The overall goal of The Brave New Life Project is to provide more humane and sustainable employment opportunities to anyone who wants to escape the animal agriculture industry. Industrial animal ag and breeding jobs take a significant toll on mental and emotional health as well as physical health. The Brave New Life Project offers safer alternatives for work. They strive to help individuals and their families recover and thrive financially, mentally, and emotionally.

    For more information on The Brave New Life Project, visit bravenewlife.org.

    At FARM we are dedicated to strive for a world where animals are no longer used, abused, raised, or killed for food. If you want to make a difference for animals please consider going vegan, and in turn, removing your financial support for animal exploitation. Each day you can make a statement and create change with your wallet by refusing to purchase animal products

     

     

  • UN Pre-Summit Ousts 14-Year-Old Activist

    When she was just three years old, Genesis Butler was so devastated to learn the truth about the origins of her beloved chicken nuggets that she immediately stopped eating meat. At six, when she discovered the milk she drank came from mother cows, the knowledge prompted a commitment to a fully vegan lifestyle.  

    Genesis has been an animal rights activist ever since those defining moments. At age seven, she attended her first protest, presented her own TEDx Lecture on animal rights at ten, became a Marvel Superhero at 13 on the Disney+ series Marvel’s Hero Project, and is now a board member for Social Compassion in Legislation, an advocacy group attempts to protect animals through changes in legislation. She also founded the nonprofit Genesis for Animals to offer much-needed support to animal sanctuaries and rescues. Civil rights activist Cesar Chavez’s great-niece even urged the Pope to adopt a vegan diet for Lent in 2019.

    Despite her impressive resume, the 14-year-old animal rights activist and ethical vegan from Long Beach, CA, recently found herself ejected from the UN Food Systems pre-summit. The overall goal of the Pre-Summit was advertised as the UN Food Systems Summit to “reaffirm its commitment to promote human rights for all and ensure the most marginalized groups have an opportunity to participate in, contribute to, and benefit from the Summit process.” The event was conducted using a hybrid format, resulting in a combination of in-person and virtual participants. While attending the public meeting via Zoom, Butler questioned the panel’s lack of a plant-based milk expert and expressed concerns regarding the environmental impact created by the dairy industry. She, as well as others voicing the same opinions, was promptly removed from the conversation.

    Butler stated that she is worried about her future on this planet. Among other negative impacts, animal agriculture contributes to our climate crisis by releasing CO2, methane, and nitrous oxide into the atmosphere, approximately three times more than plant-based milk. Vegan diets are proven to have a significantly lower carbon footprint. Butler cites that “it makes the most sense to push for nations to switch to plant-based milks because they are more sustainable than milk from animals.”  

    Lara Pappers, Head of Communication for ProVeg International in London, found it “very disappointing” that the dairy industry will not take “critical questions seriously.” 

    In an Instagram post after the incident, Genesis expressed her disappointment, calling the refusal to discuss more sustainable alternatives during a public forum discouraging. “Our leaders are still focused on an animal-based food system, and they are trying to greenwash it.”

    The public Zoom forum, titled “Raising the Climate Ambition for the Global Agricultural Sector: An Approach from Dairy,” was hosted by the Global Dairy Platform, whose purpose is to “accentuate the dairy industry’s positive impact on global food systems”. 

    As an informal, pre-summit event, the session was not overseen by the UN Food Systems Summit Secretariat, Paul Newnham. Upon receiving the news of Ms. Butler’s removal from the meeting, the secretariat reached out to request a live Instagram interview with her. He stated that the pre-summit had been intended to be the “people’s summit to hear from everyone.” Butler was happy to oblige. The following day, Genesis was allowed to have her say without fear of being silenced.

    The UN Food Systems Summit took place on Thursday, September 23, 2021. The virtual event was promoted as an event that “will serve as a historic opportunity to empower all the people to leverage the power of food systems to drive our recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic and get us back on track to achieve all 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by 2030”. 

    Genesis remains optimistic in a newer Instagram post after the interview. “As the summit approaches next month, I really hope they continue to discuss the impact the meat and dairy industry has on the planet.” She would like to see more people talking about ways plant-based food could help the environment and influence climate change. “I know we can’t move away from an animal-based diet overnight, but we have to at least start working towards it because we are at a critical period in time, and we can’t wait any longer.”