|Enewsletter • June 3, 2002|
Record Pace of Distribution
By May 31 of this year, Why Vegan? and Vegetarian Living distribution has passed 213,000. This vast increase over any previous period in Vegan Outreach's history puts us on pace for more than a half million over the course of the year – not including the distribution via the tours that start in autumn!
Putting a half million copies of Why Vegan? and Vegetarian Living into a population of 287 million people may seem insignificant; however, given our resources, we believe this is the most efficient course of action to help end the exploitation and suffering of animals in our society. On a budget of less than $150,000 – a tiny fraction of the budget of many animal advocacy groups – Vegan Outreach is providing compelling information to an ever-expanding pool of new, interested people, many of whom will in turn become effective activists (see commentary below).
We will need to print more copies to be able to continue to fill orders for the rest of the year. The more copies we can print at a time, the lower the per-piece cost will be. Vegan Outreach is dependent on donations from you, our members, to be able to print and ship these booklets. We hope you agree that this is the most efficient use of our resources. Please consider making an online donation (or sending a check to Vegan Outreach, 211 Indian Dr., Pittsburgh, PA 15238-1222) to help us print more!
by Matt Ball
The one thing I think would most aid the promotion of compassionate living is to cultivate good activists. An example:
Tabling once at the University of Illinois about ten years ago,
I was debating a dairy farmer and drawing a crowd. One of the people
passing – Joe Espinosa – overheard, took some literature, joined
the student group, went vegetarian and then vegan, and "converted"
a number of friends and his girlfriend, Marsha Forsman.
Joe and Marsha are now literature-distributing machines in the Chicago area. They keep a number of stores, libraries, shops, and restaurants stocked with Why Vegans; it is safe to assume that nearly every booklet picked up from these locations is read at least once. Marsha and Joe leaflet somewhere nearly every weekend. They have also done a considerable amount of outreach to minority groups.
This has gone on for years.
Marsha and Joe go out of their way to meet activists who "need Why Vegans for an event tomorrow!" For example, they recently delivered a box of Why Vegans to a band who was to perform in Chicago on the very day they asked us for literature. They send us generous donations on a regular basis to help print more copies of Why Vegan, and have applied for funding to aid their educational efforts. So far, they have not found anyone interested in supporting them, despite their huge success in reaching thousands of people a month. Still, they plug away!
If you look at our database, you'll see their impact. We have significantly more members in Chicago than any other city, including New York, Atlanta (where Vegan Outreach co-founder Jack Norris was active for years), and the vegan hotbed of the country, Pittsburgh.
Joe and Marsha know that, as long as we have some available, they can order as many Why Vegans as they can use. We know that everything we send them will be used well.
In my personal opinion, Joe and Marsha are worth several FaunaVision tours, or any number of advertisements and media stories. We hope more people will follow their lead.
Still a B12 Skeptic?
A new complete and updated version of Jack Norris' review of B12 research and literature is now available on our website as a downloadable PDF file (1MB). If you do not think vegans need to bother making sure they have a consistent intake of vitamin B12, or have questions about some of the claims you have read, please download and read this version. You can read the online summary of the recommendations, too.
It is vital that we remain abreast of current research, so as not
to harm the health of vegans, and subsequently, the spread of veganism.
For example, as we were putting this issue of Vegan Spam together,
we received a request to advertise a new spirulina cookbook. Spirulina
was presented as a source of B12, when in fact, the best current
understanding is that spirulina can actually harm one's B12 status.
"A USDA proposed regulation requiring poultry to have access to the outdoors could result in serious problems for the egg industry, according to United Egg Producer comments on draft recommendations of the organic rule."
"Featherless chickens could be the future of mass poultry farming in warmer countries, says an Israeli geneticist who has created a bare-skinned 'prototype.'" See slide show.
"By definition, AFOs produce large amounts of waste in small areas. For example, a single dairy cow produces approximately 120 pounds of wet manure per day (Nitrate Working Group, CDFA 1989:27). Estimates equate the waste produced per day by one dairy cow to that of 20-40 humans per day."
"A Dateline investigation finds some of the nations largest grocery chains extended sell-by dates.
"Its something most Americans take for granted that the food in our local supermarket is safe. But we recently heard something that made us question that so we went to investigate and we took our hidden cameras with us. What we found may leave you wondering whether the meat, poultry and fish you buy is as fresh as you think. Are some of Americas biggest supermarket chains being less than honest about the freshness of the food you buy."
"Moe's owners think they know what's best for him. So does the city of West Covina, Calif., so does the Animal Legal Defense Fund, and so does the director of a local sanctuary."
by Maya Kearn, The
A glossary and source guide, including a brief description and history of the lesser-known ingredients would remove the intimidation factor for American readers. But for those very disciplined and motivated vegans, this is a good book to discover new things and have fun at the same time.