|Enewsletter • May 18, 2005|
Notes from Vegan Outreach
Adopt a College Humiliates Past Records!
Over 110,000 booklets this semester alone!
At right, Meg Rudne leaflets at Yale; photo by Jon Camp.
Last Day for Free Book!
If you donate $50 or more to Vegan Outreach or sign up for a recurring donation before midnight tonite (May 18), you will receive an autographed, hard-cover, limited advanced edition copy of Erik Marcus' latest book, Meat Market: Animals, Ethics and Money. You can sign up for recurring donations via givedirect.org (the recurring option is on the second page). (For those itemizing deductions, $22 of this donation will not be deductible.)
Question of the Week: Good Farms
Q: "Rather than asking people to eat less meat, why don't you encourage everyone to eat 'free-range' from good farms?"
A: The main problem with this is being able to determine what constitutes a truly "good farm," and what is just a dishonest marketing ploy. No real standards exist that are actively enforced and available to most people. "Free-range" is almost all marketing (for more, see "What about free-range?" and the links therein).
Unless an individual is able to visit a farm, there is really no way to tell if the animals are treated any differently than on standard factory farms. It's also hard to know how animals are slaughtered, especially when no outsiders are looking. It seems unlikely that anyone but a relative handful of people have the time to do this.
Our experience is that people are inclined to eat meat when it is inconvenient to be vegetarian -- that is, when they have no control over the situation. They wouldn't be able to get "better" meat in situations like that (at a friend's house, at a restaurant). If they are in control -- say, shopping at a grocery store or co-op, there are many faux-meat and other products available for them to try / purchase.
Finally, our booklets are never meant to be the end-all of anyone's diet. Once they start making a change, most people's diets evolve. Our booklets are intended to get them started on a change, one that hopefully leads to a cruelty-free diet!
Product of the Week: Gardenburger Chik'n
Joe Espinosa writes: "I spied Gardenburger's BBQ Chik'n next to their BBQ Riblets at the Jewel grocery store in Crete, IL (not the most sophisticated store in the world). My whole life I thought that I did not like BBQ. When someone would use BBQ sauce I would have to leave the room because I did not like the smell. However, I was pushed into trying the Gardenburger Riblet and discovered that my fear of the sauce was unfounded. I love the BBQ Chik'n even more -- so much so that I had to go back and buy it again the very next day."
Editor's note: Gardenburger's Buffalo Chik'n Wings are easily the spiciest mass-market "fake meat" product I've ever had.
Send your nominees for Product of the Week to email@example.com
Notes from All Over
AR2005 is in Los Angeles this July! Jon Camp, Joe Espinosa, Anne Green, Jack Norris, and Matt Ball will all be there, and VO representatives may be giving several talks (a program can be seen here; if you would like to recommend a specific speaker, you can e-mail the organizers).
More Summer Events
45 Days in 50 States
COK has launched a new campaign to air their latest documentary, 45 Days: The Life and Death of a Broiler Chicken, on public access stations across the U.S. Click here to help.
BBC: Spring Vegan Recipes
Notes from Our Members
I was in the Bay Area
this weekend to look for an apartment.
I stopped by San Jose State University
and quickly handed out 202 Why
Vegans (all I had
room for in my suitcase).
I read your [Try Vegetarian!]
pamphlet in October
of 2004, and the day after I read
it, I decided to go vegetarian....
I am very happy as a vegetarian
and I would love to thank you for
publishing such a well-informed
piece of reading material.
It was very exciting
leafleting with Amanda Nichols at
Merced College, as students who
saw others reading the pamphlets
would come to us asking if they
could get one too. Afterward, we
saw students all around the campus
looking through and discussing the
booklets together. A friend of mine
who was attending a class that evening,
saw at least one fellow student
diligently studying the Why
Vegan during class instead
of listening to the lecture. Twice,
we were lucky enough to have individuals
stop and ask detailed questions
about veganism, animal cruelty,
and nutrition, one of whom took
a Vegan Starter Pack, and
both of these students pledged to
give veganism a try!