I am very pleased to learn of the availability
of ¿Por Qué Vegano? There is hardly any
animal protection literature available in Spanish, and it is
so greatly needed!
RC, Kanab, UT, 5/15/02
News & Announcements
¿Por Qué Vegano? A Success!
By the time you read this, we will be nearly through the first printing
of ¿PV? (pdf)
Your support is needed to be able to continue to supply these to
Paul Shapiro of Compassion over Killing
More and more people in the United States use Spanish as their
primary language, so having effective literature like Why Vegan?
available in Spanish is absolutely essential.
During COKs feed-ins, Ive found that people who speak
Spanish are generally grateful that we have copies of ¿Por
Qué Vegano? on hand. In fact, many people have been so
happy that we have Spanish literature that theyve even taken
extras for their friends and family members before having even read
¿Por Qué Vegano? is an increasingly crucial
advocacy tool that hopefully will be used by more and more activists.
Remember, its not only English-speakers who eat animal products.
We need to reach everyone!
Please consider making a special
donation to help us print more!
There have been a number of developments since we originally
wrote about a multimedia tour earlier this year.
May 19th, 2002, marked the maiden
voyage of the CARE-a-Van, Canada's first FaunaVision mobile.
The Compassion for Animals Road Expedition (CARE) will be traveling
around the U.S. and Canada from September through January.
Seattle's Action for Animals
will be tabling and leafleting at this summer's Warped Tour. They'll
be at even more locations than last year. Based on past experiences,
they expect to be able to distribute over 10,000 copies of Why
Vegan at the shows, with more in the local areas. Erin Boddicker
of The Fund for Animals will also be distributing thousands of copies
of Why Vegan during travels around the country this summer.
Other members are planning "mini tours" in their area
(look for more discussion on this in an upcoming Spam), and it is
possible that another national FaunaVision tour might be utilizing
copies of Why Vegan in the next year. Thanks to everyone who
has offered support and assistance!
Safeway becomes the first grocery chain in U.S. history to pledge
to make much-needed improvements in the living and dying conditions
of farmed animals. The $34 billion-a-year Fortune 50 company, including
its six subsidiaries, follows the lead of fast-food chains McDonald's,
Burger King, and Wendy's, which, bowing to PETA pressure, have now
begun to hold their slaughterhouse suppliers accountable if they
cause a high degree of animal suffering in certain specific areas.
The agreement with Safeway also includes: Immediate implementation
of unannounced audits of Seaboard Farms in Oklahoma, a major supplier
of pig meat, where a PETA
undercover investigator videotaped screaming pigs being beaten,
bludgeoned, and slammed to the floor. Safeway has pledged to cut
off suppliers who fail audits.
Bruce Friedrich comments: "But maybe a bigger result is that the shift
in national debate really begs the question, 'Where do we get off eating these
feeling beings in the first place?' Once corporations begin treating animals
better, everyone is forced to consider that animals are not automatons or widgets,
that they have interests, needs, desires, and more. As this consciousness grows,
the vegan world we all want draws nearer."
Viva! has received correspondence from Huckleberry's Fresh Market
in Spokane, Washington stating: "We are no longer purchasing
or selling Grimaud Farms' ducks. This is due to the information we
received from Viva!"
"We are excited that Huckleberry's has decided no longer to
carry duck meat from Grimaud Farms," said lauren Ornelas, Viva!'s
U.S. Campaigns' Director. "It is good to know that when presented
with the facts, Huckleberry's will make the right choices."
Viva is organizing a worldwide day for farmed animals on July 13. Get
"This administration is interested in the welfare of producers,
–Dr. Peter Singer, President, Animal
The National Organic Standards Board met this month to determine
the requirements for poultry to be labeled as "organic."
Congress has authorized the Board to make recommendations to the
USDA regarding the definition of substances and practices which can
be labeled as organic under the Organic Foods Production Act. Despite
heavy lobbying by factory-farming interests to minimize requirements
and profit from the nearly $8 billion organic market, the board voted
12 to 1 to keep outdoor access as a requirement. The board has stated
that "access to the outdoors fulfills an integral role in health
care and living condition requirements in organic poultry production."
Noted one organic producer, "Organic has to mean something."
Since the fall of 1999, VegDining.com has been an active member
of the vegetarian community, helping to advance global vegetarianism
by promoting vegetarian restaurants around the world. In the process,
VegDining has taken great pride in actively supporting many nonprofit
vegetarian groups [including supplying cards to Vegan Outreach -ed.].
With the dramatic downturn in the web economy, VegDining like many
other websites can no longer depend on online advertising – particularly
vegetarian-only online advertising – to pay its bills [vegdining.com
hosts Vegan Outreach banners for no cost -ed]. VegDining relies on
purchases of its VegDining
Card, the international vegetarian dining discount card. As well,
it depends on the continued support of vegetarians through submissions
of reviews and updated information about vegetarian restaurants.
To all of you who have supported VegDining either through purchases
of VegDining Cards, submissions of reviews, or by telling your friends
about us, we sincerely thank you. To others, please consider supporting
our work in any of the ways described. Through your support, VegDining
will be able to continue its work promoting vegetarianism around
One of the most difficult and frustrating questions is "What
do you eat?" To those who have been vegan for so long, the
question can seem absurd. It is all too easy to forget what a vegan
diet might look like to much of the public.
There are many reasons why this is a difficult question. You can
answer with along the lines of "Duh" – "Pasta, potatoes,
rice, bread." But this can often sound as though eating vegan
means only eating side-dishes. You can go the "fancy" route
– "Seitan, quinoa, muesli, tempeh," or list types of food
– "Ethiopian, Indian, Chinese, Middle Eastern." It shouldn't
be too hard to guess the reaction of the general population here.
You can stay simple, and say, "Veggie burgers, dogs, soy milk,"
but this can lead to potentially
bad experiences ("I tried a veggie burger (dog, soy milk),
it was awful! I could never be vegan!")
It isn't clear how to address this. So we're just going to spotlight
some of our favorite foods here and hope for the best! We know that
many people won't have access to these products (especially you in
Slovakia), and others will find something
outrageously objectionable about each choice (diglycerides of unknown
origin, owned by bfd corporation, encouraging people to eat 'meat-like'
substances! etc.), but you can't
First in the spotlight is Lightlife's Gimme
Lean, Sausage and Ground Beef styles. Here at the Vegan Outreach
office, we eat this all the time! We put it into sauces, lasagna,
tacos, etc. Every dish we've served with this to a non-veg has been
universally enjoyed. We order by the case at our local co-op and
For what it's worth, we eat BK
Veggies every chance we get–and I have noticed that every
time I order them, strangers in line feel free to try them too.
I could really see the effect in action recently at the Minneapolis
airport. As the older big guy with the big voice, I was the silverback
gorilla, and all the other primates seemed to take my cue about
which leaves to eat. I could overhear the conversations as younger
guys behind me changed their minds.
–Merritt Clifton, editor, ANIMAL
A Cage is No Place for a Hen
by Karen Davis
The Litchfield County Times
May 3, 2002
I would like to respond to Kathryn Boughton's article about Odge's
egg farm, "In Sharon, Sunny Side Down" (March 29). Last evening, as
on many evenings over the years, I was outside filling water bowls and watching
our chickens enjoy themselves in their big fenced yard. From now until September
they stay out until around nine. Even then, a few hens will dart off their roosts
for a final run around before settling in for the night. It is thereafter so
quiet you can hardly believe the activity that's been going on in that yard
One reason I'm out there is to teach about fifty white leghorn
hens to go into the chicken house at dusk, instead of roosting in the trees
as they wish. I do this to protect them from the owls and raccoons that occupy
the yard after dark. These hens, along with twenty others, arrived at our Virginia
sanctuary a few weeks ago–a handful of hens rescued from an egg farm in Florida,
in which 170,000 caged hens were gassed or crushed to death, and 30,000 hens
starved to death, after the company declared bankruptcy in January.
I hate forcing the hens off the branches, where they look like
beautiful magnolia blossoms and softly lit candles among the shiny green leaves.
That my interference upsets them is clear from their voices and from the anxiety
with which they now approach their favorite roosting area, albeit in dwindling
numbers. These hens are drawn to the trees in their yard as instinctively as
their wild relatives are drawn to the trees in the jungles of Southeast Asia.
Many people are surprised to learn that chickens evolved in the
tropical forests. Many are even more surprised to learn that chickens bred for
the food industry retain their ancestral instincts and social behavior. One
of the benefits of running a chicken sanctuary for 15 years is the opportunity
I've had to observe and interact with all kinds of rescued chickens. Regardless
of how varied their outward appearance or how varied their personalities, chickens
have a daily routine embedded in their genes that consists of foraging (scratching
for food) in the morning, sunbathing and dustbathing in the early afternoon,
foraging in the late afternoon, and roosting at sundown. Their activities are
accompanied by emotional expressions that show how much they enjoy their earthly
A problem with operations like the one in the article in which
hens are stacked in wire cages is that however convenient for management they
may be, they are not suited to chickens, whose constant egg laying in these
systems is not the result of "happiness" but of feed stimulants and
artificially extended daylight hours that keep hens' overworked ovaries pumping
Hens and roosters run around a lot, but in caged layer operations
the hen never gets to take a step. She may even be intentionally starved for
two or three weeks to manipulate the economics of egg production in the practice
known as forced molting. Chickens instinctively peck because they are foragers-they
use their sensitive beaks as hands. What are they supposed to do in an environment
that prevents their natural beak-related behaviors from being expressed? What
can they do in a barren cage where the only material available for taking a
dustbath is other birds' feathers?
Poultry specialists recognize the inappropriateness of battery
cage systems for hens, which are being phased out in Europe during the next
ten years on welfare grounds. The educated public doesn't want them, and no
wonder. As explained in the February 2002 issue of Poultry Science,
"Hen welfare in a battery cage system is compromised due to the absence
of litter, laying nests, and perches, as well as to the hen's inability to move."
Hopefully people will think about these things the next time they
go to the store and see those "cheap" eggs that cost the prisoners
who laid them dearly. Chickens need to be outdoors where they can forage, dustbathe,
sunbathe, lay their eggs in peace, and experience the earthy satisfaction of
being chickens. Otherwise the egg, traditionally a symbol of rebirth, is now
the symbol of a tomb.
Karen Davis, PhD, is the founder and President of United
Poultry Concerns, a nonprofit organization that promotes the compassionate
and respectful treatment of domestic fowl.
I completely keep
your stance that all we can do NOW is to try to lessen the suffering
of animals as much as possible, i.e. as much as we are able to.
Since we live in this technocratic world, no one can say that he
or she is a "pure" vegan. A pure vegan, as some people
claim to be (and criticize the BKV-proposal for example) WOULD
NEVER TOUCH A COMPUTER!! LET ALONE WRITING an email. This is just
a midpoint, a route to better world. I'd love to live according
to my ideals, but unfortunately it is not feasible. Because all
the people who are vegan from their deepest hearts would rush to
self-sustainable community, leaving the rest of the world to itself
- which would lead to total destruction of the whole planet. However,
our job is to promote love, understanding, and our cause. We have
to educate and teach others and raise awareness to gradually change
the way this society works. I agree, that YOU would be better off
if you were a pure vegan and did not use ANY conveniences of this
world, but in the long term, you'd harm those you want to help
Look into the future, not only at the immediate
MK, Slovakia, 5/17/02
Two weeks ago, my mother picked up a Why
Vegan at a concert. Since then, Ive become determined
to stop the inhumane torture of animals. Ive stopped eating
animal products all together. Please send me tons of brochures!
JH, Gary, IN, 5/15/02
BTW, I am in the process of getting an electric
vehicle, and one of the EV owners I was talking with this weekend
is also vegan. We had the "why did you become vegan"
chat and he says it was your website that finally pushed him over
the edge to veganism...great work guys!
AB, Long Beach, CA, 5/13/02
Just being veg is wonderful in itself,
but to be able to spread the word and help people to understand
why it is such a worthy cause makes it so much more fulfilling!
It is hard to get people to see the big picture, no matter how
I explain. Your pamphlets help immensely. After all, it was one
of your pamphlets that got me to go vegan.
JA, Greenville, KY, 5/11/02
Why Vegan is an excellent publication
to provide to academics, as it is well cited and well written.
I'm happy to distribute them as much as I can.
IM, Washington, DC, 5/7/02
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