Issuu on Google+

SUPER SIZE ME AND THE GREAT VEGAN DETOX DIET PLUS... McLIBEL RABBIT RESCUE FESTIVAL FEVER ISSN 0307−4811 03

9 770307 481000


in this issue features

From Fear to Friendship In June, in a rant against vegetarians and vegans in the Guardian, the writer Julie Bindel confessed she may hate us out of guilt at supporting animal abuse plus a fear of giving up meat. We responded in our hundreds with messages of joy and pride, but also compassion and understanding for someone who was scared. Fear leads to anger, anger to hate, hate to suffering, the dark side, even the abuse of innocents to try to lessen the pain, whether verbal or physical, of humans or animals. It would be easy to keep a distance, throwing stones back the other way, but dialogue has power to dispel prejudices and change attitudes, as we saw after the July atrocities in London. People reach out to one another when faced with hatred and intolerance. But why wait for bad times? Sharing food has always brought families, friends and communities together. And when friends of different faiths sit down to eat, it is vegan foods that all can enjoy.

10

McLIBEL: MAKING A STAND

12

ALEX JAMIESON AND THE GREAT AMERICAN DETOX

19

VEGAN MULTIVITAMIN

20

FESTIVAL FEVER

24

BUNNY LOVE: RESCUING RABBITS

30

TESTING CHLORELLA

regulars 2

NEWS

4

SHOPAROUND

Everyone everywhere is a potential teacher and learner of veganism. The Vegan Society creates tools and is a point of contact for organizations and government departments needing antidotes to pizza and burger culture. However, tucked away in the far south-east of England, it’s been quite a trek for customers or members wanting to drop in and help out. Having investigated many cities, we plan to relocate the Society’s offices to Birmingham in 2006, a multicultural media hub with low overheads, at the centre of road and rail communications. Bringing our HQ and staff to the geographical heart of the nation will create unprecedented opportunities to build new friendships and put vegan solutions at the heart of national agendas on animal welfare, human health and sustainable agriculture.

6

OUT & ABOUT

16

VEGILANTICS

22

RECIPES - DETOX DELIGHTS

27

GROW VEGAN

29

CURIOUS VEG & MEGAN THE VEGAN

31

DIET MATTERS

33

REVIEWS

35

POSTBAG

36

LOCAL CONTACTS

With gratitude to all vegan pioneers, we must look to the future and focus on the possibilities of that future. By our example, vegans draw back the curtain of ignorance about the dark side of the food industry. Whether you start the next McLibel or simply inspire one person to choose a compassionate lifestyle, the ripples spread.

38

LOCAL GROUPS NEWS

39

EVENTS

41

CLASSIFIEDS

44

PRIZE CROSSWORD & CARTOON

Alex Bourke Chair

The Vegan Society

l

Donald Watson House

Local rate 0845 45 88244

Editor Catriona Toms Design www.doughnutdesign.co.uk Printed by Hastings Printing Company On G-print chlorine-free paper Cover photo Adapted from an original image courtesy of Tartan Films

l

l

Tel. 01424 427393

7 Battle Road l

l

St Leonards-on-Sea

Fax. 01424 717064

l

l

East Sussex

l

TN37 7AA

l

UK

e-mail: info@vegansociety.com

© The Vegan Society Registered Charity no. 279228 The views expressed in The Vegan do not necessarily reflect those of the Editor or of the Vegan Society Council. Nothing printed should be construed to be Vegan Society policy unless so stated. The Society accepts no liability for any matter in the magazine. The acceptance of advertisements (including inserts) does not imply endorsement. The inclusion of product information should not be construed as constituting official Vegan Society approval for the product, its intended use, or its manufacturer/distributor. Contributions intended for publication are welcomed, but unsolicited materials will not be returned unless accompanied by a SAE.

The Vegan l Autumn 2005

1


News n VEGANISM CAN HELP TO SAVE THE PLANET Quoted in the magazine, Physics World, scientist Alan Calverd revealed that a switch to a vegan diet could produce significant reductions in carbon dioxide - the gas thought to be the greatest contributor to global warming. It has long been thought that factory farming generates vastly increased levels of methane, another greenhouse gas, but Calverd’s report suggests that, in addition, up to a fifth of atmospheric carbon dioxide is produced as a result of mass farming of animals for meat and other products. In particular, the report cites the fact that cattle bred for meat are up to three times their natural size, which means a sharp increase in the levels of carbon dioxide they produce. Again it is clear that a vegan diet benefits the environment just as it does people and animals. For more details on veganism and the environment, see The Vegan Society’s leaflet Are Your Meals Costing the Earth?

VEGAN SOCIETY VACANCY INFORMATION OFFICER The Vegan Society is looking for an enthusiastic, wellorganised individual to work as part of our small team, helping promote veganism and providing support for vegans and those considering switching to an animal-free diet. As Information Officer, your role will involve answering queries, preparing information sheets, leaflets and other publications, working on website content and writing for The Vegan magazine. Opportunities for media work are also available. The ideal candidate will have: l l l l l l l

Excellent oral and written communication skills Degree level qualification Awareness of vegan issues, including basic nutritional knowledge Ability to use database, word processing and e-mail packages Excellent organisational skills Experience in answering queries from members of the public Campaigning and/or press experience an advantage

If this sounds like you, and you want to help promote veganism, then we’d love to hear from you. The post is initially based in our offices in St Leonards on Sea, with a move to Birmingham planned within a year. Salary dependent on qualifications and experience. Closing date for applications: Friday 9th September. For an application pack, please contact Janet Pender on 01424 448836 or via email ceo@vegansociety.com

2

The Vegan l Autumn 2005

n DETAINEES GRANTED A VEGAN DIET In March, The Vegan Society was contacted by the London Detainee Support Group, stating that vegan immigrants held in Colnbrook Detention Centre were not being given vegan food. During his incarceration (which at this point had been almost a year), one detainee had twice been sent to isolation for requesting true vegan food and frequently went without meals for two or three days, eating only a portion of fruit or a handful of peanuts which came with the standard meals. We were horrified to learn of these circumstances and to discover that others were being treated in a similar manner. In conjunction with the Vegan Prisoner Support Group, The Vegan Society contacted Colnbrook Detention Centre and requested that vegan meals be provided. They were also sent Home Office guidelines on the treatment of vegan prisoners, along with nutritional information and recipes. We have since been following the progress of this and other detention centres, and are happy to announce that all of the vegan detainees we were concerned about are now given an adequate vegan diet. The London Detainee Support Group would like us to pass on their thanks to all of our supporters who ensure we are here to help vegans everywhere – thank you for helping us to help them!

n HEART OF ENGLAND VEGAN FESTIVAL Over 2,000 people attended the Heart of England Vegan Festival at Birmingham’s Carling Academy on Saturday 18th June, organised by Realfood. A very successful event, with 80 stalls and an array of national and international speakers, this was organised as a follow-up to last year’s North-West Vegan Festival, which took place in Manchester. With festivals happening later on this year in London, Bristol, Nottingham and London again, it’s clear that there is a massive public interest in veganism, and what better way to help your friends to go vegan than to bring them to an event like this, with a huge variety of organisations and lots of tasty vegan food to try? www.veganfestivals.org.uk


n VEGAN FITNESS ACTIVITY WEEK The inaugural Vegan Fitness Activity Week took place from 22nd to 25th June in Manchester. Vegans from the UK, Sweden, Norway, Austria, Germany, USA and Finland took part in five days of sport, which included hiking, mountain biking, power lifting, rugby, spinning, swimming, climbing, track and field, yoga, pilates, martial arts and a strongperson contest. With the focus on participation rather than ability, everyone who took part had a great time and was motivated to get more involved in both vegan fitness and vegan campaigning. For more information and details of future events, visit the Vegan Fitness Community at www.veganfitness.net

n EUROPEAN UNION NOT DOING ENOUGH FOR ANIMAL WELFARE

CIWF

According to a new report issued by the European Commission, more than half of EU residents don’t feel enough is being done to safeguard animal welfare and protection. The report, Attitudes of Consumers Towards the Welfare of Farmed Animals, revealed that more than three quarters of respondents felt their shopping habits had an impact on animal welfare. Concern at the treatment of laying hens was expressed by 58% of consumers questioned, while a majority thought that food labelling is not clear enough with regards to animal welfare. It seems that at last consumers are starting to realise that the best way to avoid the horrors of the factory farm is to avoid animal products altogether.

n VEGAN ATHLETE WINS ULTRAMARATHON

photo: Chris Kostman / Badwater.com

Vegan athlete, Scott Jurek, has triumphed in what some believe to be the toughest race in the world. The Badwater Ultramarathon, which took place this year on 12th July, covers 135 miles, much of it uphill, and is run in scorching desert heat. Despite this being his first attempt at the race and the furthest he has ever run, Jurek completed the course in just over 24 hours, beating his nearest rival by two hours and smashing the previous record time by more than half an hour. Jurek, who has been vegan for six years, has previously won a string of 100-mile endurance runs.

n VEGAN STYLE AND CUISINE EVENT Cruelty-free fashion shop Bourgeois Boheme and Vegan Society Sunflower Standard holder, 222Veggie Vegan Restaurant (where all the food on the menu is 100% animal-free), will be co-hosting a vegan promotional event to showcase vegan fashion and cuisine from around the world on Saturday 3rd September at 222Veggie Vegan Restaurant, 222 North End Road, West Kensington, London. It will feature the opportunity to purchase stylish vegan footwear, bags and purses and taste a variety of delicious vegan dishes. A guest speaker is also planned. The event runs from 12.30pm to 4pm, with the talk at 2pm. Tickets are just £5 and can be booked by calling 020 7602 9067 or sending an email to info@bboheme.com. For more information on 222 VeggieVegan Restaurant, see www.222veggievegan.com or call 020 7381 2322.

n SCARE STORIES OVER SOYA AND SPERM Recent media reports have caused much speculation on the possible adverse effects of soya products on the ability to conceive. So should would-be vegan parents be concerned? Laboratory research conducted by Professor Lynn Fraser found that when sperm comes into contact with genistein – an oestrogen-like compound found in soya - the mechanism by which the sperm attaches to women’s eggs is destroyed. These experiments on human sperm in a bottle have raised hypothetical concerns that eating soya products may make it more difficult for women to conceive. However, as Professor Richard Sharpe of the Human Reproductive Science Unit in Edinburgh pointed out: ‘Oriental societies that traditionally eat a soy-rich diet show no signs of reduced fertility… Effects on sperm in the laboratory are not necessarily directly related to what might happen in real life.’ The Japanese have been consuming substantial amounts of soya for many years and currently top the world health league while showing no signs of dying out. In soya use, Japan is closely followed by China, which is still struggling to contain its population growth. Which evidence do you find more convincing? Despite the weakness of the evidence for any real adverse effect of soya, if you are hoping to become a mother and finding it difficult to conceive, there would be no harm in limiting soya intake for a few days each month around the time of ovulation as an experiment. Based on the available evidence, however, ensuring adequate vitamin B12, iodine and selenium is much more likely to promote successful conception and pregnancy and a healthy child. This year, The Vegan Society is publishing a book on raising children on a vegan diet by our consultant dietitian, Sandra Hood. This will include advice on preconceptual nutrition.

The Vegan l Autumn 2005

3


Shoparound Andy Lawson takes a look at some of the great vegan products available this autumn

n FREEDOM BEER Organic vegan beer is always welcome! This lager from the Freedom Brewery is clean and crisp, a refreshing change from the usual mass-produced beers. Britain’s first microbrewed lager when it was launched in 1995, it has since been the recipient of a multitude of awards. With its distinctive fresh taste and delicate aroma, you’re guaranteed a pleasant drinking experience whilst being sure your beer is vegan – excellent news for lager aficionados. For more details on Freedom Beer, see www.freedombrewery.com

n TOFU MASTER TOFU KIT This high-quality tofu-making kit will be a boon to anyone who enjoys their bean curd on a regular basis. Made using modern and fashionable stainless steel, it is based on an original wooden design by Chung Wai. The method for manufacturing tofu supplied with the kit is by Ng Pik Ying, a renowned tofu expert, formerly from Hong Kong and Beijing, the key difference being that it uses calcium sulphate rather than nigari as a coagulant, producing a tofu that is rich in calcium – ideal for ensuring bone health. Using this kit, it costs just 85p to produce a kilo of tofu, a lot cheaper than the up-to £6.20 you may have to pay for commercially produced tofu. The kit is priced at £59.55, and includes all you need to start making your own tofu – including muslin cloths, 500g of organic soya beans, and 500g of calcium sulphate. As such, you will only need to produce 10kg of tofu to recoup the initial outlay! To order, visit www.tofumaster.org or call 01424 830 542.

4

The Vegan l Autumn 2005

n RAW LIVING At The Vegan Society's HQ, we all love chocolate. However, we don't often think of it as health food. The reason for this is that chocolate contains a lot of saturated fat, and chocolate bars also contain sugar, and may contain hydrogenated fats and other nasties. By contrast, Raw Living's new range uses pure, unprocessed cacao nibs. In the HiBar, these are combined with Brazil nuts and agave nectar and available in plain, orange or peppermint, retailing at £2.95 for a 50g bar. Alternatively, there is the Hi-Trail mix, combining cacao nibs with sprouted sunflower and pumpkin seeds, vine fruit and carob chips. A 100g bag costs £2.95. Raw Living also manufactures a range of other raw health foods including dried yacon root, a Peruvian fruit somewhere between pineapple and banana in taste and consistency, which is priced at £3.55 for 100g. For more details on Raw Living and the raw food diet, see www.rawliving.co.uk or call 020 8608 1857.

n SIMPLY SOAPS These natural and fragrant soaps, hair and skincare products, manufactured in a wild wood in Norfolk proved both gentle and sensuous. The soap range includes varieties such as mindawakening poppy, relaxing and reviving calendula & lavender, and a warming and refining gardener’s soap. The skincare range, meanwhile, includes cleansers and toners to leave your face smooth and clear. The selection is completed by shampoo bars, hair oils and bath salts, which relax and invigorate both mind and body, leaving you smelling as sweet as sugar. Free from synthetic fragrances and colourings, Simply Soaps range is ideal for all skin types and being organic it won’t harm the environment either. Soaps cost from £2.35, while the vegan skincare collection starts at £6.95, and the haircare range £5.95. For more details, see www.simplysoaps.com or call 01603 720869.


All Shoparound products have been authenticated as

n TANJERO HANDMADE SOAPS

n FRUITZY FRUIT & CEREAL BARS These new, wheatfree cereal bars come in a variety of different flavours including cranberry, cranberry & orange, and cranberry & raspberry. Containing over 70% fruit, they provide a nutritious energy boost, being rich in carbohydrates and very low in saturated fats. Cranberries are rich in antioxidants and flavonoids, thought to be essential for good health. For more information, see www.bigthoughts.co.uk

This lavish range of handmade soaps delighted us when they arrived at The Vegan Society. Made using natural base oils, including olive, coconut, palm and hempseed oil, they provide a wonderfully rich lather. The range is also fantastically diverse, with varieties including carrot and aloe vera and astrological soaps representing all signs of the Zodiac, with the blends of essential oils based on the recommendations of Wiccan author Scott Cunningham. Prices range from £1.50 for base oil soaps, to £5 for soaps from the sumptuous Exotic Range, made with expensive oils from the Far East. To order, visit www.tanjero.co.uk or call 0114 256 2977.

n I AM ORGANIC SKIN & HAIR CARE

n FUNK BUBBLE This exciting new range of women’s toiletries impressed us with its delicate aromas and groovy, biodegradable packaging. Everything is vegan and free from alcohol and chemicals such as sodium lauryl sulphate – great news for those concerned about the potential effects of strong chemicals on the skin. The range includes shampoos, conditioners, moisturisers, bubble baths and soaps, in varieties as exotic and extravagant as jojoba shampoo (£5.45), fizzy strawberry bath bombs (£5.50) and chocolate/orange moisturising body cream (£14.50), affording you a selection of ways to pamper yourself. To view the whole range, and to order, visit www.funkbubble.co.uk

This new range of organic toiletries includes shampoos, moisturisers, deodorants, soaps and shower gels, using only natural ingredients, from renewable sources where possible to protect the environment. We tried the sumptuous peppermint, grapefruit and rosemary shower gel. Relaxing and reviving, it is perfect for those who find it hard to wake up in the mornings. The aromatic macadamia & myrrh hand cream is ideal if you spend a long time engaged in gardening or other manual activities, while the peppermint foot gel with myrrh & camphor soothes and refreshes dried or cracked heels. Moisturisers include a luxurious avocado face cream, made with natural vitamin E to promote healthy skin. The full range, priced from just £2.95, is available to view and order at www.iamnatural.co.uk Quote ‘Vegan Society Lipbalm Offer’ when you order over £20 (not including p&p) and receive a free pot of Organic Mandarin Lipbalm (worth £2.95). Offer valid until end of September 2005.

n SUPERFOOD This natural plant powder drink is packed with nutrients to build and repair your body, providing an instant and sustained energy boost. Rapidly absorbed into the bloodstream, and with higher than average levels of protein, it is ideal for those undertaking strenuous or athletic exercise. In addition, the complex of plant-based vitamins and minerals is thought to increase mental focus and concentration and reduce stress – perfect if you’re feeling run-down or mentally drained. Free from gluten, live yeast and other allergens, Superfood can be mixed in just three minutes. It is available in the UK exclusively from Vegan Society trademark holder Herbs Hands Healing, one month’s supply retailing at £29.50 – see www.superfood.co.uk or call 0870 755 4848.

The Vegan l Autumn 2005

5


OUT AND ABOUT WITH OUR LOCAL VEGAN CAMPAIGNERS For complete listings of Vegan Society Local Contacts and Local Groups, see pages 36 to 38

V

egan Society local contacts and local groups have been keeping busy this summer. Here, we look at the assorted ways in which they have been promoting veganism up and down the country. Wherever you are and whatever you’re into, there’s bound to be something here to inspire you to action.

LOCAL GUIDES.... Fifteen-year-old Sam McCreesh of the new egroup Vegans Campaigning for Animals has compiled a vegan and vegetarian guide to Rutland. Available as a 15-page booklet or online at www.vegetarianrutland.co.uk, the guide lists shops, restaurants, pubs and accommodation catering for vegetarians and includes a key indicating suitability for vegans. There’s also information about places to see and things to do in and around the county. Sam hopes that the guide will bring more vegetarians and vegans to Rutland and encourage local businesses to cater well for those who live on an animal-free diet. If you would like to order a copy of the guide, Sam can be contacted on 01664 454324. You can read more about Sam’s vegan campaigning in his new column in the Vegilantics pages.

…SOCIAL OUTINGS… North Riding Vegetarians & Vegans is experiencing something of a revival. In May, June and July we took advantage of the light evenings to do part of the Ripon Rowel Walk, always finishing near a pub. Walking and talking make you thirsty! We decided to try out a pub that caters for vegans a few miles west of Harrogate. We've also seen three very different plays at Darlington Civic Theatre. One thing we hope to do more of is attend meetings of other groups, especially meals organized by Leeds Vegetarians & Vegans and East Riding Vegans, which are always very enjoyable social occasions. Patricia Tricker, North Riding Vegetarians & Vegans

…HOLIDAYS…

Barbara Staples, of Birmingham Vegetarians and Vegans, is organising vegan colour meditation and healing holidays in the Himalayas. The trip includes a visit to the Golden Temple and a stay in McLeod Ganj, the headquarters of the Tibetan Government in Exile. Tibetan culture, religion, art and architecture are prominent in the area, making it popular with international travellers. The emphasis throughout the holiday will be on tranquility and meditation, with opportunities for sightseeing and shopping. The next vegan group holidays are planned for 4th to 12th October and can be booked each month thereafter.

…FILM SCREENINGS... During National Vegetarian Week I held a community screening of the award-winning documentary Peaceable Kingdom. The film is about farm animals who have been rescued and the people who have made a connection with them. Around 60 people attended the screening, which was held in the lecture hall of Ipswich library. The audience members went through a rollercoaster of emotions sadness, shock at how cruel some people can be, and joy and laughter at some of the stories that were told. After the screening Phil Brook from Compassion In World Farming gave an informative talk, which was followed by a vegan buffet. Each member of the audience was asked to fill in a short survey form afterwa rds and they took home a compassion kit of literature to help them make more kind choices throughout their lives. The response to the film was all positive, with people saying that they had never seen anything like it before. In fact, the screening had such an impact that three audience members turned to a vegan lifestyle and one to a vegetarian lifestyle. Peaceable Kingdom is produced by Tribe of Heart www.tribeofheart.org Tina Canham, Vegan Society Local Contact for Suffolk

FEELING INSPIRED? If any of the activities or events featured here have inspired you to go out and veganise the world, please get in touch and we’ll happily provide the advice and tools you need to get you started. You can call our information department on 01424 448823 or email info@vegansociety.com

6

The Vegan l Autumn 2005


...NEW LOCAL CONTACTS ACTION TEAM... A new area of Local Co ntact activity is being spearheaded by the Local Contacts Action Team (L-CAT). This initiative is aimed at inc reasing the effectiveness of the Veg an Society's local network by poolin g resources and improving communicatio n between contacts.

Birmingham Vegetarians and Vegans

L-CAT will establish a rela tionship between Local Contacts and staff allo staff to interact directly wing with the varied skills of the Society's most active members. At L-CAT's core is a we bsite and forum where Local Contacts can talk each other and share inf to ormation, inspiration and skills. Any Local Conta can become an active ct part of L-CAT, contributi ng to the website or get involved in our activities ting . An invigorated Local Co ntacts network will ben efit the whole Society helping to equip Conta by cts with the skills, resou rces and moral support promote the Society and to vegan issues, and also providing an even better service to all of our me mbership. Find out more about L-C AT and how to becom e a Local Contact at: www.lcat.makessense.co .uk

…INFORMATION STANDS… In June, Cambridge Vegans & Vegetarians (CamVeg) organised a busy stall on behalf of the Vegan Society at Cambridge's big annual free Strawberry Fair. Although it was really hard work it was a good laugh too, and it was great to work as a group. We got to speak to a lot of people and even signed up some new Vegan Society members on the spot!

...STREET STALLS

Vegan Campaigns is a new group promoting vegani sm, primarily in the London area. Our activities so far include a free vegan food fayre, stalls and leafleting, running a cam paigns workshop at the Anima l Rights 2005 camp in Kent, and to promote and stage helping the London Vegan Festiva l. On 4th June we held a stall in Clapham to pro mote veganism and give out information hig hlighting the cruelty of the meat industry. We had leaflets, vegan guides and recipe books , and information about other animal-free products, such as toiletr ies, shoes and clothing.

In March last year we held a meeting to discuss the re-establishing of a vegetarian and vegan group in Birmingham. We met at the Warehouse Café, a centrally situated vegetarian and vegan café. Fifteen people turned up for this first meeting and everyone was very positive and full of ideas about how we could develop in the future. Five of those attending went on to give talks at future meetings, which is a reflection of the knowledge, expertise and commitment amongst our members. We now hold our meetings on the 4th Tuesday of every month at the Warehouse Café. This central venue has proved a catalyst for the growth of the group. Anyone visiting the café can pick up copies of our programme and come along and join in. Regional support The Vegan Society sent out a questionnaire on our behalf to all their members in the West Midlands within reasonable reach of Birmingham. There was a really encouraging response, which has increased our membership considerably. We now have contacts over a wider geographical area and arrange meals out in different parts of the region at least once a month. Trips to various festivals across the UK are also organised. Keeping on track We held our AGM last September and now have a very enthusiastic ten-person committee, whose combined expertise has been invaluable in continually moving the group forward. Visibility We have since designed our logo, t-shirts, newsletters and programmes, which hopefully give us that corporate recognisable feel that people will relate to a vegan/vegetarian way of life. Liz Wright and Frank Thunder www.bvv.org.uk

The food on offer includ ed products donated by companies such as Redwood, Fry’s and Tofutti. Volunteers also provided homemade dishes and we pu rchased and gave out veg an chocolate and other treats. The cho ice definitely drew peo ple to the stall and it felt like a mini-ve rsion of a free vegan foo d fayre. In general, people were very complimentary abo ut the food and quite a few said they wo uld consider changing to a vegan diet! You can download a fre e copy of our 24-page guide to vegan campaigning at www.v egancampaigns.org.uk The Vegan l Autumn 2005

7


1 NOVEMBER ST

IS WORLD VEGAN DAY! With World Vegan Day 2005 just around the corner, it’s time to get organised! This year’s theme is diversity. How many times have you been told that you ‘don’t look like a vegan’? Or maybe you’ve been told that you do! We all know that there’s no such thing as a ‘typical vegan’, so this year we plan to make sure that everyone else knows it too. A new range of Vegan Society merchandise is being designed to help you proclaim your veganism at the same time as celebrating the movement’s diversity. This will be launched in a special marketing magazine, generously sponsored by The Redwood Wholefood Company, which should hit supporters’ doorsteps in the run-up to 1st

World Vegan Day is a wonderful opportunity for you to get involved in promoting veganism, so whether you’re a Vegan Society Local Contact, part of a local group, or if you’d just like to do your bit, 1st November is the perfect time to get active. Why not organise a street stall or contact your local healthfood shop, grocery or supermarket to arrange a special vegan tasting-day? Your local library may be happy to host a display on veganism, including leaflets, posters and, of course, copies of The Vegan magazine.

8

The Vegan l Autumn 2005

Whatever you choose to do to celebrate World Vegan Day, make sure you get in touch and let us know about it. We’ll be featuring the best events and coverage in a future issue of The Vegan. Vegan Society Local Contacts should visit the Local Contacts forum on www.lcat.makessense.co.uk to discuss ideas and keep up to date with developments. See page 7 for details.

November. We’re also planning something a bit special for the World Vegan Day website, so keep an eye on The Vegan Society’s main site at www.vegansociety.com or look out for details of the launch in the marketing magazine.

Bookshops could use the day to promote vegan recipe books. Maybe your local press would be interested in covering your event or would like to publish an article on veganism to coincide with World Vegan Day. If you’re feeling confident you could contact your local radio or television station.

A stand at a local festival or a street stall is a great way to educate people about veganism.

If you are organising an event and would like copies of Vegan Society leaflets, please contact our sales department on 01424 448832.


VEGAN FUN(DRAISING) E

ach year we receive donations that members and supporters have raised through sponsored events. Thanks to generous gifts this year we have been able to print another batch of the ever popular booklet ‘Why Vegan?’ and continue with our ground breaking work on infant nutrition.

BIN THE WELL THUMBED SPONSOR FORM Everyone agrees that sponsorship is a great way to raise funds but we know that some people find it awkward to pass around a sponsor form trying to get friends to sign on the dotted line, and it can be time-consuming to repeat the trek to collect the pledged money after the event. We wanted to make it easier for you to raise money through sponsored events so we have joined many charities in subscribing to ‘Justgiving’. Justgiving is an easy way to advertise an event online and enables your sponsors to support you electronically. THE EASY BIT Decide what you want to do to as your challenge, whether this is running a marathon, growing a moustache or bathing in soya milk. Then let the world know what it is you’re going to do. Just go to www.justgiving.co.uk/vegansociety/raisemoney and follow the simple instructions to make your own fundraising page, giving full details of what challenge you are going to meet to raise funds. When you are happy with the page you have created, email all your friends, relatives and colleagues wherever they live and tell them to go and see what you’re up to. You can update your page with your progress and keep everyone informed on

how your challenge is going. Your friends can sponsor you online using the secure server and you get an email letting you know who has rewarded your effort. THE EVEN EASIER BIT If your sponsor pays tax at the standard rate Justgiving will collect Gift Aid on the amount they have pledged and this will add an extra 28% to the amount we receive. Justgiving deposits the sponsorship money directly to The Vegan Society’s bank account, letting us know who has raised the funds so we know who to thank. THE FUN BIT This just leaves you with the fun bit! Completing your challenge and updating your page to let everyone know how it’s going! Local groups can of course decide to create their own special event and show their local community what vegans in action can do while collecting money to promote veganism at the same time. We’ll be keeping a close eye on what crazy, worthwhile or brilliant challenges you dream up and will feature the ones we like best in a future magazine. If you prefer to skip the sponsorship and just donate money directly to The Vegan Society, Justgiving allows you to do that, too. Just go to www.justgiving.com/vegansociety/donate and choose the amount you wish to give.

NEW EDITIONS OF BESTSELLING VEGAN SOCIETY PUBLICATIONS New editions of two of The Vegan Society’s most popular publications are now available Vegan Passport – 2nd Edition ISBN: 0-907337-30-9 Cover Price: £3.99 The new and expanded Vegan Passport now boasts 56 languages, accounting for an incredible 93% of the world’s population. Slip it into your pocket, and you’ll find that wherever your travels take you, you’ll have no problem explaining your dietary needs (also handy for clarifying your needs when visiting restaurants in the UK). And if you do find somewhere where none of the 56 languages apply, the fail-safe pictures from the previous edition have been retained. It’s never been easier to travel the world without compromising on your vegetarian or vegan diet.

Animal Free Shopper – 7th Edition ISBN: 0-907337-28-7 Cover Price: £4.99 The long-awaited new edition of the Animal Free Shopper, The Vegan Society’s unparalleled guide to vegan products available in the UK, is finally with us. This edition is bigger and more comprehensive than ever before; including listings for ten supermarkets, as well as hundreds of individual companies, meaning that in total over 15,000 vegan products are listed. We’ve kept the easy-to-use index system from the 6th edition and all of the most popular extras, such as lists of useful contacts and guides to additives and healthy eating, have been retained and updated.

Both books are available direct from The Vegan Society – order online at www.vegansociety.com or telephone 01424 448 842. The Vegan l Autumn 2005

9


McLIBEL: MAKING A STAND his year marks the 50th anniversary of McDonald’s, and the worldwide protest movement against the fastfood chain also celebrates 20 years of growing opposition. We look back on the history of the McLibel case, talk to the director of the McLibel documentary, and remember one of the vegan activists who helped start a campaign that was to change the world.

T

LONDON GREENPEACE AND THE BACKGROUND TO McLIBEL Established in 1970, London Greenpeace was the original Greenpeace group in Europe. From the very beginning, the organisation was involved in a rainbow of radical environmental and social justice issues, ranging from campaigns against nuclear weapons and nuclear power to active support for the miners’ strike. Animal rights was also high on the agenda, with veganism being promoted throughout these times as part of the wider struggle against oppression, in which animals were seen as exploited and oppressed by modern society just as many people are.

REMEMBERING GARY BATCHELOR AN ‘ORDINARY’ VEGAN WHO HELPED START AN EXTRAORDINARY CAMPAIGN Compiled by Alex Bourke, Paul Gravett, Dave Morris and Gary’s friends.

Gary Batchelor vegan activist 1958-2005 Vegan from the age of 14, Gary was involved in London Greenpeace in the 1980s, and was one of the instigators of the anti-McDonald’s campaign. He fought for animal and human liberation, peace and environmental protection. A stalwart of the animal rights movement, Gary was an ever-present face at demonstrations

10

The Vegan l Autumn 2005

In the 1980s many groups were involved in campaigns against different aspects of McDonald’s business practices. London Greenpeace brought them all together in a general campaign covering all of the issues with which McDonald’s were involved. The first ‘Worldwide Day of Action Against McDonald’s’ took place in 1985, with the now legendary ‘What’s Wrong With McDonald’s?’ factsheet being produced the following year. The leaflet accused the fast-food giant of promoting an unhealthy diet, unethically advertising fast-food to children, and exploiting their workers. It also attacked the company on environmental and animal welfare grounds and promoted veganism. It wasn’t long before McDonald’s decided to act. The corporation hired spies to infiltrate London Greenpeace and a libel action was filed against some of the group’s activists. Despite being advised

and gatherings. Always approachable and willing to discuss his feelings, he was loved by all who knew him. Friends and people from his past who hadn’t met in years reunited to celebrate Gary’s life and remember him and his beliefs at two special events in London, where he lived for many years. On Thursday 21st July, undeterred by the second wave of bombings in London, people walked from all over the city and from further afield for a picket and leafleting dedicated to Gary outside McDonald’s in Leicester Square. The next evening, there was a memorial gathering for friends and comrades at Pogo vegan cafe in East London. A gang of veggies and vegans celebrated his life in the way he would have wanted, with vegan food and cake and bringing their own booze. People recalled favourite moments with Gary.

McLibel provided a rallying point for anti McDonald’s campaigners, and the whole thing snowballed into one huge public relations disaster for the world’s biggest fastfood chain. A book, a film and a website all helped to spread the word all over the world.

that libel laws are stacked in favour of the rich and powerful, gardener Helen Steel and ex-postman Dave Morris decided to fight the case and stand up for the public interest against the might of the global corporation. The McLibel Support Campaign was set up, and international publicity, protests and leafleting mushroomed. The reality of McDonald’s was at last being exposed and publicly debated.

‘Gary was a great character and friend, someone who was ever present during the 1980s. He liked to chat about loads of things.’ ‘I first met Gary outside the Canadian Embassy in 1984 at a demo in solidarity with some jailed Canadian environmental activists. He was one of four people who had made the effort to turn up. His uncompromising energy will be missed.’ ‘Gary had always been a fine, wonderful person to know and lived for every living form of life.’ ‘I know Gary’s good ideas and good influence will live on into the future. I will always remember him as a kind, compassionate person, and a good friend.’


After the longest trial in English history, the courts ruled that McDonald's marketing "pretended to a positive nutritional benefit which their food did not match" and that "if one eats enough McDonald's food, one's diet may well become high in fat etc., with the very real risk of heart disease."; that they "exploit children" with their advertising; are "culpably responsible for animal cruelty"; and "pay low wages, helping to depress wages in the catering trade.” However the Courts ruled that the McLibel 2 had still libelled McDonald's over some points and, despite the damning judgements, outrageously ordered them to pay £40,000 damages to the $35 billion-dollar company! The McLibel 2 refused to pay and took the British Government to the European Court of Human Rights, arguing that the McLibel trial was unfair and that UK libel laws were oppressive. The ECHR agreed that the trial had been unfair, but failed to slam the UK’s notorious libel laws. However, the actions of thousands of people around the world who continued to leaflet and protest in defiance of McDonald’s censorship efforts have helped to protect freedom of expression and have made it less likely that powerful multinationals will attempt to bully campaigners in this way again. For more information on the McLibel trial and the wider campaign, visit the McSpotlight website at www.mcspotlight.org.

photo: Karen Robinson

MCLIBEL – THE FILM Filmed on a shoestring over ten years, the documentary about the McLibel saga brought the story to millions of people around the world. The Vegan talks to director Franny Armstrong of Spanner Films. McLibel was finally shown on British TV this year which was fantastic. Why did it take so long? Since Helen and Dave won in court in 1997 on the issues of healthy eating and advertising junk food to kids, these have become enormous public interest issues. Look at the success of Fast Food Nation and Super Size Me. Before McLibel, McDonald’s had created a climate of fear around issues concerning their products by threatening to sue anyone who dared criticise them. Post-McLibel they’ve not sued anyone, which opened up the floodgates for criticism of McDonald’s and other multinationals. By the time Helen and Dave won at the European Court of Human Rights in February this year it was impossible for the BBC to ignore McLibel any longer. It took exactly ten years from when I started working on the film to getting it onto the BBC. They screened it first on BBC4 in April and then got such a huge response from the public that it was shown on BBC2 in a flagship series of hit documentaries in June 2005.

Do you think the media in general is biased against vegetarians and vegans? I think most people in the media - like most people in our society generally are meat eaters. It’s normal to feel slightly threatened by someone who has made changes to their life for moral reasons which you’re not doing yourself. This feeling of guilt in meat-eating journos may come out sideways as sniping at veggies. As awareness of modern food production methods increases, I think the health (and ethical) benefits of an animal-free diet will become more and more accepted by the public and the media.

What do you think of Supersize Me? I’m lovin it. Capturing victory: Franny Armstrong records the McLibel Two’s triumph outside the Royal Courts of Justice.

photo: Karen Robinson

Taking shots at the fast-food industry: ‘McDonald’s had created a climate of fear around issues surrounding their products.’

Tell us about the philosophy of Spanner. We make films we think are important, regardless of whether the mainstream TV industry wants them or not. More than 50 million people around the world have seen our three big docs: ‘Drowned Out’ about the fight against the Narmada Dam in India, ‘Baked Alaska’ - about climate change in Alaska and, of course, ‘McLibel’.

Can you make a living from your films? People always ask whether I’m rich and the answer is ‘yes, very’. I’m spending my few decades on the planet doing something worthwhile, I work with people who have the same ideals and motivations as me and I count amongst my friends Eskimos in Alaska and tribal villagers in India. So I am very rich. But I don’t have lots of money, no. Just about enough for me and two others to get paid slightly below minimum wage.

What’s your next project? An epic about oil, war, climate change and the end of the world. Don’t expect to see it in a multiplex near you any time soon.

If you’d like to learn how to make your own documentary on a budget, Franny is running a course with Oscar-winning producer John Battsek in London on 3rd 4th September. Find out more at www.spannerfilms.net where you can also buy their films, including McLibel.

The Vegan l Autumn 2005

11


ALEX JAMIESON AND THE GREAT AMERICAN DETOX Tony Bishop-Weston

Alex Jamieson may have made her name as ‘Morgan Spurlock’s vegan girlfriend’, but with her new book, The Great American Detox Diet, she is quickly becoming known in her own right. In an exclusive interview, Tony Bishop-Weston finds out more about the chef, nutritionist and author who is helping educate the world about the benefits of a plant-based diet.

W

hen Morgan Spurlock decided to embark on his now notorious 30-day McDonald’s diet, his girlfriend wasn’t exactly happy. Not many right-minded people would be, but Alex Jamieson had more reason than most to dread the start of the Super Size Me project. Alex is a vegan chef and holistic nutritionist so, from the very beginning, she knew that a month of eating only McDonald’s was seriously bad news. Her one consolation: when that month was up, Morgan’s diet was hers for the next eight weeks. She knew it would be a challenge, but she was determined that her vegan detox diet would get her boyfriend back into shape and, more importantly, help him regain his health. The effects of both the McDonald’s diet and the detox diet were charted in the film, resulting in terrible publicity for McDonald’s and the fast-food industry in general, and great publicity for veganism. I caught up with Alex to find out a bit more about her, Morgan, Super Size Me and The Great American Detox Diet. GOING VEGAN The first thing I wanted to know about was Alex’s own decision to switch to a vegan diet. She tells me that she decided to go vegan four years ago, in response to a variety of health problems, including candida, migraines, depression and weight gain. ‘I was miserable. Moving to a vegan, wholefood diet allowed my body to heal. I felt incredible. The more I learned about how food is produced and how animals are raised, I decided that I didn’t want to be a part of the system.’

12

The Vegan l Autumn 2005

‘DO YOUR HOMEWORK’ To anyone thinking about switching to a vegan diet, or worried about raising their children as vegans, Alex’s advice is: ‘Do your homework. Read up on the benefits of the diet, learn about how to do it correctly, and talk with other vegans who are living well and feeling great. Eating vegan healthfully takes a level of knowledge above and beyond the standard diet - but it’s well worth it! I have more energy, I feel more in touch with my body and nature, and feel great about my food choices.’ I wondered if there was anything that she found difficult about being vegan, but the only drawback Alex could think of was difficulty finding food when travelling – something that she and Morgan have been doing a lot of recently.

She quickly read up on food, health and nutrition, going on to train as a chef at Natural Gourmet Cookery School and then enrolling at the Institute for Integrative Nutrition, where they studied ‘every diet invented by the human race,’ and focused on empowering students to help heal themselves and then the people around them. MEETING MORGAN It was whilst training to be a chef that Alex met Morgan Spurlock. The partnership that was to be the basis of the Super Size Me phenomenon began in a very ordinary way: ‘When I started culinary school I worked nights in a bar. Morgan came in one night and I thought he was really cute and had a great smile, so I walked over to him and picked him up - the rest is history!’ Skip to two years later, and a welldocumented Thanksgiving dinner where Morgan and Alex watched a news report about two teenage girls who were suing McDonald’s, claiming that the food they served had made them obese and ill.


LIFE WITH MORGAN Unlike Alex, Morgan eats meat, so I wondered how - as a committed vegan who is very aware of the adverse effects of animal products - Alex copes with living with a meat-eater. The answer was quite simple: Morgan doesn’t cook. ‘He loves my food, so we have a very harmonious home-life. He eats what he wants when he goes out, and I respect his choices, as he respects mine. Everyone is different. If you love someone, there will always be things about them that you find difficult to live with, but life is sometimes about compromise

‘A REALLY GOOD BAD IDEA’ In Don’t Eat This Book, in which Morgan gives the background to the whole Super Size Me experiment, he describes the moment inspiration struck, and Alex’s reaction: ‘As I lolled on the couch, a McDonald’s spokesman appeared on the screen and said (I’m paraphrasing), Listen, you can’t link our food to these girls being sick. You can’t link our food to these girls being obese. Our food is healthy and nutritious. It’s good for you. That got me to sit up. It is? Egg McMuffins and Big Macs are healthy and nutritious? They’re good for me? Really?

RAISING CHILDREN If she and Morgan decide to have children, Alex says she’s not quite sure how they’ll deal with them wanting to eat meat and junk food, but thinks she’ll use a lot of what she learned in her own childhood. ‘My parents just didn’t allow it. Sure I hated them sometimes, but parents make the rules and kids have to live by them. Setting a healthy example is the best policy. My parents grew a lot of our own food, and I ate these fresh, organic foods growing up. I was healthy and look back on the experience very thankfully.

QUICK-FIRE QUESTIONS

Well, if it’s that good for me, shouldn’t I be able to eat it every day with no side effects? Shouldn’t I be able to eat it for breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks, desserts, the works, and be fine? The light bulb switched on.

What are your favourite vegan dishes? Breakfast: I love a ‘power shake’ with berries, banana, nuts, vitamin C, flax seeds, green chlorophyll powder and aloe juice. Other days I like oatmeal (porridge) with berries and maple syrup. Snack: I love air popped popcorn with sea salt and olive oil. Dinner: Kidney bean chili, miso stew, sautéed kale, big salads with hummus. Dessert: Anything chocolate. Is there a new vegan food you wish they’d invent? No. We have so many options, I don’t miss anything.

IF I RULED THE VEGAN SOCIETY… Given Alex’s success at introducing millions of people to what is basically a vegan diet, I’m interested to know what advice she has for others who are in the business of promoting veganism. ‘I’d add some humour and prankster mentality to the Society. I love how Morgan handled Super Size Me with a sense of humour - it enabled a lot of people to open up to the ideas of the film. I tend to get a bit serious about issues, and that can turn a lot of people off. I’m a big believer in the idea that ‘if you’re going to tell people the truth, you had better make them laugh or they’ll kill you.’’

What would you serve at a dinner party to a bunch of meat-eaters who you wanted to vegducate? Something ‘meaty’ like sautéed mushrooms, a miso stew or a wholegrain casserole. If you met Donald Watson, who founded The Vegan Society and invented the word vegan in 1944, what would you say? I would ask him his opinion on the state of the world and food politics today - what is his perspective?

I turned to Alex. “I’ve got a great idea for a movie!” I said. She looked very dubious. I told her my idea—to use myself as the guinea pig and see what would happen if I dove into a typical American lifestyle of overeating and underexercising for thirty days. And I’d film myself doing it. “I’ll tell you what’ll happen,” she said. “You’ll kill yourself.”’ Knowing that resistance was futile, Alex struck a deal: she would go along with Morgan’s crazy plan, provided that the second his supersized month was up he would hand himself over to her to be ‘detoxed’ on a vegan wholefood diet.

Favourite quote? ‘Life is a feast, and some poor suckers are starving to death!’ (Auntie Mame) What was the last lie you told? I’m not too disappointed that Morgan didn’t win the Oscar for Super Size Me. When did you last cry? Oscar night. Seeing Morgan on stage was wonderful - I’m so proud of everything that he has done! Do you have a message for readers of The Vegan? Keep up the good work!

ò The Vegan l Autumn 2005

13


ò

THE GREAT AMERICAN DETOX DIET The results are there for all to see. In his month of McDonald’s meals, Morgan’s weight shot up by nearly 25 pounds, his cholesterol and blood pressure increased, and his liver started to show signs of serious damage. After two months on Alex’s vegan detox diet, his cholesterol, blood pressure and liver function were all back to normal and he had lost nearly half of the extra weight he had gained. Naturally, the world wanted a piece of this down-size diet so it wasn’t long before the emails and letters started to flood in. Just how had Alex got Morgan back into shape? More than happy to help others along the path to permanent good health, Alex decided to put the whole thing down on paper: The Great American Detox Diet was born. Covering everything from caffeine and sugar to fats and protein, The Great American Detox Diet is an eight-week plan to help people make the transition from an unhealthy junk-food diet to a tasty, nutritious, wholefood diet. Most importantly for vegans is that it is fully informed by Alex’s own vegan lifestyle. Where an animal product is mentioned as an alternative to a vegan ingredient, Alex is quite clear about which she would prefer people to eat. Of essential fatty acids from fish, for example, she says: ‘These fats are available from plant sources, so focus on walnuts, ground flax seeds, and a variety of cold preparations with unrefined vegetable oils.’ And a section on the toxins found in fish is enough to convince anyone that plant foods really are the more sensible option.

photo: Tracy Boulian

For Alex, the best thing about the whole Super Size Me phenomenon is ‘helping to open the eyes of people who didn’t see a connection between their food choices and their body.’ The success of the film has also provided a platform for promoting a healthy vegan diet to sections of the public who would never previously have given a second glance to a book about nutrition. Alex may well have predicted the effects that a month of eating McDonald’s products would have on her boyfriend’s health, but she can hardly have begun to imagine the effect it would have on the health of so many others. Thanks to Alex and Morgan, millions of people are now more aware of the potential consequences of a fast-food lifestyle and are beginning to see the health benefits that can be gained from a well-balanced vegan diet. THE GREAT AMERICAN DETOX DIET – THE BASICS The Great American Detox Diet is an eightstep programme aimed at helping people lose weight and make the switch to a healthy lifestyle. Each step is intended to take one week, so in just two months it can help put you on the road to good health. But it doesn’t end there. Unlike many of the diets that we’ve seen come and go, this one is designed to help readers make a permanent improvement in their lifestyle. Here’s a quick run-through of the eight main steps:

WEEK 1: MAKE SURE YOU’RE GETTING ENOUGH WATER ‘Using water as a first step to flush out, clean up and fill up is really important,’ says Alex. Keep a jug or bottle of water near you whenever possible to allow you to keep topping up. WEEK 2: SCRAP THE SUGAR ‘Rethinking our love affair with sugar is an important part of detoxifying and healing our bodies of all sorts of medical conditions.’ But sugar isn’t the only problem; all those artificial sweeteners with unpronounceable names will also have to go. WEEK 3: CUT OUT THE CAFFEINE ‘Consuming a lot of caffeine affects cholesterol levels adversely and contributes to high blood pressure, higher stresshormone levels and higher homocysteine, all of which are known to contribute to an increased risk of heart attack.’ WEEK 4: CHOOSE THE RIGHT KIND OF FAT Avoid hydrogenated fats and stock up on essential fatty acids from nuts and seeds. Ground flaxseeds, walnuts and purslane are all recommended. WEEK 5: WHOLEGRAINS AND COMPLEX CARBOHYDRATES ‘While your diet may be full of refined carbohydrates, the unrefined, wholegrain varieties are the real powerhouses of energy and stamina.’ Read up on the huge variety of grains available then get cooking! WEEK 6: BALANCING PROTEIN In week 6, Alex recommends making the switch from animal-based sources of protein to plant-based sources: ‘When you switch to a diet based on vegetable proteins, you automatically consume less antibiotics, cholesterol, saturated fats, nitrates and hormones.’ Great news for vegans! WEEK 7: BEYOND DIET You’ve sorted out your diet; now look around you. Week 7 is about detoxing your home environment: removing unnecessary chemicals and finding more natural alternatives. WEEK 8: THE DETOX LIFESTYLE This stage is designed to help you to fully integrate the changes you’ve made over the past couple of months into your daily life, helping to put you firmly on the path to a healthy lifestyle. Notes The Great American Detox Diet by Alex Jamieson is published by Rodale Press, 2005. Don’t Eat This Book by Morgan Spurlock is published by Penguin Books, 2005. Extract © Morgan Spurlock, published with kind permission. With thanks to VegNews. See page 33 for full details of both books. Super Size Me is available on DVD from all leading stockists.

The Vegan l Autumn 2005

15


Welcome to the Autumn 2005 Kids’ Pages

Bronwyn We went to the Isle of Wight Walking Festival in May. Aisha We managed to walk over 40 miles in just three days! Bronwyn The first walk we did was called Keeping High in the Centre. It was only 11 miles but it was too fast. There were some really lovely views though. Aisha The second walk was 13 miles, from Freshwater Bay Promenade to Brighstone and back. Bronwyn Afterwards, we were invited for tea with the organisers of the festival. The leader of the walk phoned to ask if they had soya milk, and they did. Aisha The third walk was 15 miles and was circular from The Orchards campsite to Carisbrooke Castle and back. Bronwyn Although this was the nicest walk in terms of the leader and the pace, we saw some horrible animal cruelty. We walked past pheasant enclosures and markers where the people who shoot the birds have to stand. We also came across a cage with a magpie kept in it as bait and two crows caught in it. Aisha We were able to release all the birds without harming the cage – we would have liked to have damaged it but that would be breaking the law. Bronwyn Mummy’s friend took us to London and we had falafels and hummus with salad and couscous in Maoz at 43 Old Compton Street. Aisha You pay for the falafel and pitta bread and then heap on as much salad as you like and anything else you fancy. They were absolutely delicious! Bronwyn We went to the British Museum, and went round the Egyptian section as we were doing a topic on Egyptians. Aisha They have the Rosetta Stone in the museum, which has the laws of Ancient Egypt written on it in Hieroglyphic, Demotic, and Greek script. Bronwyn When we were in London, we went to Peppercorns. They have two shops - one near West Hampstead station and the other in Charlotte Place.

Aisha They are the only shop we have seen that sells Laura’s Idea, who make vegan cheesecake, apricot mousse, rice pudding, and other delicious vegan desserts. Beware: not all Laura’s Ideas are vegan! Aisha We have spent some time with Reading Hunt Sabs this year. They are a lovely group. There is Nick, who teaches degree-level maths and helped Mummy revise for her exam, and Claire, who made us a really yummy spaghetti sauce, and Pete, who made us a chocolate trifle. Bronwyn We helped Daf make a chilli after circuit training one week. Aisha We heard some good news on 25th May. There was an announcement that the government had been told to move away from animal testing. Bronwyn Also, British Airways and China Air will no longer be transporting live animals for vivisection! Aisha In July, we went to Pamplona to do the Human Race. It’s a protest against the Running of the Bulls. During the festival of San Fermin, six bulls run through the streets of Pamplona every day for a week. People line up in the streets to jump in front of the bulls and tease them by throwing large pieces of material in front of them. Bronwyn Before the running each day, they shave the horns of the bulls. They also rub petroleum jelly (Vaseline) in their eyes, and beat them. Our coach driver saw them doing this and beating the bull with an axe before a bullfight. In some bullrings, they get the bull drunk and drop sandbags on their backs. A i s h a! Hi Br on wy n and

The Vegan l Autumn 2005

Bronwyn We hope you had a fantastic summer, and look forward to seeing some of you at the Christmas Without Cruelty Fayre soon. Aisha Thanks again for all your letters and emails!

y living in ear-old vegan bo as and I am a 5-y My name is Zackari Sweden. s and tofu beef. is mashed potatoe My favourite food ng. with pear flavouri to eat milkshake e lov I rt sse de r Fo r We also have fou is also a vegan. lled Malte and he ca g do a ve ha We o rats. chinchillas and tw garden apartment with a to move to a nice ing go are we In one month an plant! my pre-grown be where I can plant cited about that! r and I’m very ex ve a little brothe ha ll wi I er tob Oc In Goodbye,

Zackarias

16

Aisha We spent 24 hours on a coach from King’s Cross to Pamplona. One of the coaches broke down on the way and there was a five-hour wait for a repair team to come down to South France from Germany. Bronwyn We slept in cabins at the campsite. On our first night there was a barbeque with veggieburgers, potato salad and couscous. There was a meeting afterwards where everyone was taught to say the chants we would say on the run: “Toros Sí, Corridas No!” Aisha In English, this is “Bulls yes, Bullfights no!”


Bronwyn (life vegan) is 9. Aisha her sister is 12 and has been vegan as long as Bronwyn and vegetarian since before she was born!

Dear Bronwyn and Aisha,

My name is Ben, I am 7 and have been vegan all my life. Me and my mum have just been on holiday to Thailand, Laos and Cambodia. This is a picture of me in Laos, swimming in a pool near some caves.

Please send your stories, poems, pictures & photos to: Bronwyn & Aisha’s Vegilantics c/o The Vegan Society, Donald Watson House, 7 Battle Road, St Leonards-on-Sea, East Sussex, TN37 7AA or Email editor@vegansociety.com with “Vegilantics” in the subject line.

SAM Mc CREESH THE DIARY OF A TEENAGE

VEGAN We found it quite easy being vegan in all the places we went to. They had tofu everywhere - I even had a tofu pizza in Cambodia with no cheese and it was delicious. They use a lot of fish sauce and fish paste in the cooking, but my mum learnt how to ask for no egg and no fish sauce in Lao, Thai and Khmer so we were OK. We ate a lot of delicious salads in Laos, they had really lovely lettuces growing everywhere and they served up fresh herbs and watercress with the salad and with the veggie spring rolls. One day we ate fried riverweed from the Mekong River. It was like thick strips of seaweed and was sprinkled with sesame seeds, it tasted very nice. We found Indian restaurants in some places and they had Palak Paneer which is normally spinach and Indian cheese curry, but because they couldn’t get hold of paneer, they used tofu instead so we were able to eat it! We went to an organic farm café in Vang Vieng in Laos and had Mulberry shakes which were really tasty.

The only thing I found a bit boring was breakfast as we did not have vegan margarine so had bread and jam most days. Local people tend to eat noodle soup but the stock was usually meat-based so we did not eat it. My mum had taken two mini cartons of soya milk and one guesthouse made me porridge one morning which was nice. You could buy soya milk there but most of it also had cow’s milk in as well. We are going on holiday again in August to Norway and Sweden, but will be staying in hostels and camping so will mostly be cooking for ourselves. Love from Ben

The past few months have been really busy for me with the launch of Vegetarian Rutland and Surrounding Areas, Rutland’s first ever vegetarian and vegan guide! The media release that I issued generated numerous enquiries which resulted in three really positive and argumentative newspaper articles and also a news interview with Rutland Radio.

At the time of writing, this summer is set to be a busy one for animal activists. One event I’m fully supportive of is the Freedom March and Rally in Oxford on 23rd July organised by SPEAK. The animals in vivisection labs can’t voice their disgust, and their screams of pain as they are poisoned to death are unheard by the public so we have to be their voice instead. We won’t lose our lives if we speak out against animal wrongs, but the animals do lose their lives if we don’t so therefore we must! No government will silence us by outlawing major campaigning methods and I’m sure that we and future generations will forever keep fighting until we win! Since becoming vegan I’m well aware of the number of young people grossly misinformed about veganism. Work with young people is of great importance if my generation is going to grow up with respect for animals and a greater understanding of veganism and the issues surrounding it. I am really impressed with the work I have seen so far on The Vegan Society’s new educational CD-Rom and I have no doubt that it will reinform thousands of previously misinformed young people about veganism. I am looking forward to spreading the vegan word this autumn to young people with a particular emphasis on World Vegan Day 2005. We are all working towards the day when everyone believes that animals are not ours to eat, not ours to wear, not ours to experiment on and not ours for entertainment or any other exploitive purpose. Remember that every campaigner and every vegan who speaks out for the animals is bringing that day closer and closer to us and the animals. Forever for the animals,

Sam McCreesh W: www.campaigningforanimals.co.uk

The Vegan l Autumn 2005

17


• Make Tofu in your home • The taste of fresh Tofu is so good and so different to • • • •

• • • • •

• •

• • •

commercial Tofu. Once tasted you will not go back to any other Very quick to make with our simple step by step instructions One sixth the cost of commercial Tofu Experiment with your own flavourings Are you concerned what commercially processed food actually contains? Or what it has ‘picked up’ during the manufacturing process. Give yourself total control over the purity and quality of the ingredients of what you eat Vary the firmness to your preference Restaurants can provide their clientele with better quality and taste Made from stainless steel it will last a lifetime and repay its cost many times over. Comes with a satin finish Easy to clean and to keep free from contamination It is made from stainless steel which is very hygienic and easy to clean, other wooden Tofu kits are harder to clean and can easily harbour pathogenic bacteria. It allows the user to make professional quality Tofu in very little time (30mins preparation and leave for an hour). Three piece construction fits within itself for easy and compact storage. This kit is superior in every way to any other type of kit and it Comes with a lifetime guarantee! Made in England Organic Soya Bean supplies complete with everything you will need to make to make Tofu and Soya Milk


NEW VEGAN HEALTH SUPPLEMENT © Stephen Walsh

W

e have been working for some time with Vegan Society trademark holder HealthPlus, manufacturers of the Veganicity range (see opposite page), to produce a supplement specifically designed for vegans of all ages.

A varied vegan diet centred on whole plant foods provides plenty of the vast majority of nutrients, with a rich variety of beneficial antioxidants and other plant substances and healthfully low levels of saturated fat, cholesterol and toxic contaminants. This healthy foundation can, however, be undermined by factors relating not to vegan diets in general but to the particular environment in which we live: l lack of vitamin B12 in sanitised but unfortified plant foods; l insufficient sunshine to produce our own vitamin D all the year round; l low levels of iodine and selenium in the soil. The new supplement provides a convenient way to compensate for these factors. Vitamin B12 and homocysteine If we lived on wild fruits, roots, shoots and leaves, we would get enough B12 from the dirt and bugs routinely present in such foods. While most vegans get enough vitamin B12 to avoid outright deficiency, many do not get enough B12 to avoid moderately raised levels of homocysteine - a toxic natural chemical linked to increased risk of birth defects, dementia, depression and death. The supplement provides 10 micrograms (µg) of vitamin B12 – enough to reduce homocysteine to desirable levels. Fortified foods are an alternative source.

when our shadow is not much longer than we are: between October and March people in the UK must rely on stores built up in the brighter months or on vitamin D in their diet. Our supplement includes 10 micrograms of D2 – enough to keep stores adequate through the year even if sun exposure is limited. Iodine and selenium Soil levels of iodine and selenium are low in the UK and much of Europe, and the amounts in plants reflect the amounts in the soil. In North America iodised salt is used while in most of Europe, including the UK and Ireland, most people get their iodine from dairy products without even realising it has been deliberately added via the cattle feed. Vegans, however, avoid the hidden supplement along with the saturated fat. Selenium intakes in all sections of the UK population tend to be lower than ideal. Natural plant foods such as kelp and Brazil nuts can boost intakes of iodine and selenium respectively, though an ideal but not excessive level may be hard to achieve as the amounts contained can vary significantly. Low iodine can damage brain development in children and increase the risk of thyroid problems in adults. However, high intakes – especially a sudden change from a low to a high intake – can also trigger thyroid problems. Our supplement uses potassium iodide to provide a precisely controlled amount so that one tablet reliably and consistently provides the adult RDA of 150 µg.

Low selenium reduces antioxidant activity, increases vulnerability to infections and may increase the risk of some cancers, while very high intakes are toxic and can cause skin and hair problems. Our supplement uses selenomethionine, the usual form of selenium in plants, to provide 60 µg of selenium per day – enough to maximise its antioxidant activity and complement good vegan intakes of other antioxidants. For more information on all the above topics, see Plant Based Nutrition and Health, available from The Vegan Society. Meeting the needs of children One tablet per day meets the needs of adults and teenagers while one every other day (or half a tablet each day) meets the needs of younger children. The amount in each tablet has been determined so as not to exceed international guidelines even for a one-year-old child. A very small amount of sugar (about half a gram per tablet) and apple flavour have been included to make the tablets palatable and chewable, which should make the task of persuading children to take them a lot easier. Purchasing the supplement The tablets can be purchased direct from the Vegan Society at just £4.99 plus p&p for three months adult supply (90 tablets). We have kept the price low by ordering in bulk, using simple packaging and charging below the normal RRP. We hope that members and others will find this product a simple and affordable way to promote excellent health for themselves and their families.

Three other B vitamins help to keep homocysteine low: folic acid, B2 (riboflavin) and B6 (pyridoxine). While most vegans get plenty of these from their diet, the EU recommended daily allowances (RDAs) are included to ensure that there is no possible weak link. Vitamin D Vitamin D is important for healthy bones and the natural way to get it is from sunshine on our skin. But this only works

The Vegan l Autumn 2005

19


FESTIVAL FEVER A

utumn sees two of the UK’s most popular vegan events: the London Vegan Festival and the Bristol Vegan Fayre. Both events offer an incredible mixture of cruelty-free shopping, entertainment and education. If you’ve been to either of them before, you’ll almost definitely want to go again; if you’ve never been, here’s a taste of what you’ve been missing. THE LONDON VEGAN FESTIVAL

Now in its eighth year, the London Vegan Festival is one of the biggest gatherings of vegans anywhere in the world. We caught up with the event’s organisers, Robin Lane and Alison Coe, to learn a bit more about the background to the event and to find out what this year’s festival has in store. Can you describe the festival for readers who have never been? The London Vegan Festival is a vibrant, informative and enjoyable event. This year it offers the same great day out as it always has with some new additions. There is a wide range of stalls with information about veganism and related issues, vegan products such as toiletries, cosmetics, footwear and, best of all, loads of vegan food (both raw and cooked) including the ever-popular veggie burgers, chocolates and cakes. Vegan drinks are available at the bar. There are speakers, children’s activities, acoustic music and opportunities to meet like-minded people. The festival also attracts non-vegans who want to make a change in their lives, as well as those who are interested in finding out more.

The first National Vegan Festival took place in London in 1998 and was organised by Robin, Alison, Chris Sutoris, Julie Rosenfield and Brian Jacobs, who were mostly Vegan Society Council members at the time. It was a great success. The 1999 festival was run solely by Robin and Alison, who have organised the festivals ever since. Coordinating a major event has been a learning curve as we had no previous experience and it has given us the opportunity to pass on our knowledge to others who may wish to organise their own events, should they need it.

Check out www.londonveganfestival.org.uk for further details.

Have you been to any of the other big vegan festivals?

Tell us a little bit about the history of the festival:

We visited the Birmingham vegan festival in June and will be attending the forthcoming Bristol festival. It’s great to see vegan festivals in other parts of the country taking the message far and wide.

The initial suggestion of a vegan festival came out of an idea by Chris Sutoris for a major annual vegan event that could encompass all aspects of veganism including the promotion of animal rights whilst providing entertainment at the same time.

What do you think this festival, and others like it, contributes to the vegan movement? Vegan festivals provide an opportunity to find out more about veganism, to meet like-minded people in a friendly environment and to inspire others to organise their own events. The vegan festival also provides a day out where everything is safe to eat and OK to wear! It’s a day where people can meet up with friends and enjoy a totally vegan day out and try out new products. When people contact us who have attended the vegan festival and say they’ve become vegan, we think that’s great and that’s what it’s all about! We would like to take this opportunity to thank The Vegan Society for its continuous support from the very beginning, and to express our gratitude to all of our other sponsors and the volunteers who have helped make the vegan festivals such a great success. Web: www.londonveganfestival.org.uk Organised by CALF This year’s London Vegan Festival takes place on Sunday 25th September, from 10am to 7pm at Kensington Town Hall, Hornton Street, London W8 (nearest tube: High St Kensington). Admission £1, under 16s free.

20

The Vegan l Autumn 2005


BRISTOL VEGAN FAYRE - LET'S PARTY 29th October, 10am – 6pm, The L-Shed, Princess Wharf, Wapping Road, Bristol

A Vegan Guide to Bristol Published annually by Yaoh, A Vegan Guide to Bristol lists over 160 businesses and organisations that cater for the vegan lifestyle in the West Country.

The Bristol Vegan Fayre 2005 is already shaping up into a massive party. Everyone’s invited so come along and get involved! As with the previous two years, the Bristol Vegan Fayre is very much about a fun day out. ‘It’s Bristol’, says Tim from Yaoh, the event’s organisers, ‘and Bristol doesn’t really do issues. In Bristol, we do parties. That’s what makes the show so unique. There is a really special blend of stallholders, entertainers and speakers and although we are all passionate, we put the emphasis on entertainment. It’s better that way.’ There will be over 100 stalls with every kind of vegan product under the sun, including a stand brimming with Vegan Society goodies. So save up your pennies and get ready for some nonstop animal-free shopping! But the fun doesn’t end there; in fact it has barely begun! There’ll be live bands, DJs, a vegan fashion show, a vegan bodybuilders’ shoulder press competition and our personal favourite – a vegan custard pie fight! Entertainers include the vegan contortionist Rubber Ritchie (try telling him you need fish oils for flexibility!) as well as cookery demonstrators, magicians and clowns. And for the littl’uns there’s a kids’ area. If all of that isn’t enough to convince you that Bristol is the place to be on 29th October, then maybe the list of talks will help win you over. Topics covered include vegan nutrition, veganism and the developing world, raw foods and vegan sports nutrition. And of course there’ll be a range of stands providing information on all aspects of the vegan diet and lifestyle. If you’re still swithering, we’ve got two words for you: free food. All this, and no entry fee! With over 5000 people attending last year’s event, our advice is to get there early so you don’t miss out. If you want to make a night of it, there’s also an after-show dinner and party with a vegan gourmet buffet and licensed bar from 8pm to 1am at the Rajpoot restaurant. ‘This one will be really special,’ says Tim. ‘Many of the leading lights in vegan circles will be there.’ And, just in case you’ve not had enough excitement for one day, there’ll be belly dancers and DJs keeping you entertained well into the night. Tickets cost £23.50 and are available from Yaoh (details below). ‘You’re all very welcome. Just don’t forget your dancing shoes.’ The Vegan Society is sponsoring the 2005 Bristol Vegan Fayre, along with Plamil, Beanies, Redwood, Essential, Wild Oats, Earthbound and Health Unlimited. The show is organised by Yaoh. For further information about the show or to book tickets to the party please contact Yaoh, PO Box 333, Bristol, BS99 1NF; T. 0117 9239053 info@yaoh.co.uk www.yaoh.co.uk

Ten thousand free copies of this handy little guide are distributed every year. If you’re coming to Bristol we recommend getting yourself one of them to find out where to stay and go. ‘There’s no doubt that Bristol is at the centre of the universe for all things vegan and organic,’ says Tim. ’There are so many options for those on the vegan path. It’s pukka.’ To obtain a copy of A Vegan Guide to Bristol just send a large stamped addressed envelope (47p stamp) to Yaoh at the address below. You can also access the guide online at www.veganbristol.makessense.co.uk.

The Vegan Society AGM – it’s your Society, so have your say! This year, to make the event even more special, the Vegan Society is holding its AGM the day after the Fayre in Bristol. All members are invited to attend so why not come along for the whole weekend, have heaps of fun and then have your say at the AGM? Vegan Society AGM The Elmgrove Centre Elmgrove Road Cotham Bristol BS6 6AH. Doors open 1pm, meeting begins 2pm. Crèche and refreshments available.

The Vegan Society Awards 2005 The Vegan Society’s annual awards are a great way to reward people and companies that promote veganism or help make animal-free living a little bit easier. Vote for your favourites using the form that came with your magazine, or visit www.vegansociety.com to vote online. The winners will be announced and the awards dished out at the Bristol after-show party at the Rajpoot restaurant on 29th October.

The Vegan l Autumn 2005

21


DETOX DELIGHTS Alex Jamieson

A

uthor of The Great American Detox Diet, and the woman who was single-handedly responsible for getting Morgan Spurlock back into shape after his gruelling 30-day McDonald’s diet, Alex Jamieson shares with us some of her favourite healthy recipes. Photographs by Tony Bishop-Weston

1. Bring the water to the boil over a high heat in a small lidded saucepan and add the quinoa and half the salt. Cover, reduce the heat to a simmer, and cook for 20 minutes, until all the water has been absorbed. 2. Place a large frying pan over a medium-high heat, add the oil and sauté the garlic for 20 seconds. 3. Stir in the parsley, rosemary and thyme and season with the remaining salt and the pepper. After 30 seconds, remove the frying pan from the heat and set aside. 4. When the quinoa is cooked, add it to the frying pan and stir to combine. Add the basil and stir again. Serve immediately. Per serving: 242 calories/10011kJ; Protein 6g; Carbs 37g; Sugar 2g; Fat 9g (of which saturates 1g); Fibre 2g; Sodium 600mg. * Quinoa (pronounced keen-wah) is a protein-rich grain, available from most wholefood shops and many supermarkets. It should always be rinsed thoroughly before use

HERBED QUINOA SALAD (Serves 4) 480ml (16 fl oz) filtered water 200g (7oz) quinoa, rinsed and drained three times* 1 tsp sea salt 3 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil 1 clove garlic, peeled and finely chopped 2 tbsp flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped ⁄2 tsp each fresh rosemary and fresh thyme, finely chopped

1

⁄4 tsp freshly ground black pepper

1

2 fresh basil leaves, shredded

22

The Vegan l Autumn 2005

.


1. Preheat the oven to 190°C (375°F), gas 5. 2. To prepare the crust, sift the flour and a 1⁄2 teaspoon salt into a medium mixing bowl. Stirring continuously, slowly add 6 tablespoons of olive oil, until the mixture has formed a dough. If the dough seems too dry, add up to 2 tablespoons of water. Do not over mix or the dough will be too tough. 3. Gather the dough into a ball and lightly roll with a rolling pin until you have a circle 23cm (9in) in diameter. Press the rolled dough into a 23cm (9in) flan dish. Prick the bottom of the crust all over with a fork several times. Set aside while preparing the filling. 4. Place a medium frying pan over a medium heat and add the

POPEYE’S SPINACH PIE

remaining tablespoon of olive oil and the onion. Sauté for 2 minutes, add the cabbage and courgette, and sauté for a

(serves 4)

further 5 minutes. Add the spinach and sauté until wilted. 225g (8oz) spelt white flour 3 ⁄4 tsp sea salt 7 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil 1-2 tbsp filtered water 60g (2oz) onion, diced 40g (1 1⁄4oz) red cabbage, finely shredded 60g (2oz) courgette, diced 455g (1 lb) fresh baby spinach, washed and dried 1 garlic clove, peeled and finely chopped 1 ⁄2 tsp each dried marjoram, basil and thyme 1 tsp each mustard powder and paprika 1 ⁄4 tsp cayenne pepper 1 large tomato, cut into 8 half-moon slices, to garnish

BERRY FUDGY LOLLIES (makes 8) 340g (12oz) silken tofu 170g (6oz) maple or brown rice syrup 4 tbsp cocoa powder 1 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil 1 tsp vanilla extract Pinch of sea salt 4 strawberries, washed, hulled, dried and sliced into quarters 1. Line a sieve with kitchen paper, place the tofu inside, pull up the corners of the paper to cover the tofu, and weight it, either with a can laid on its side or two or three stacked bowls. Allow the tofu to drain for 15 minutes or until about 80ml (3 fl oz) of the liquid has drained out.

5. Add the garlic, the remaining salt, and then the marjoram, basil, thyme, mustard, paprika and cayenne pepper. Stir well to combine, and sauté for a further minute. 6. Pour the whole mixture into the flan dish. 7. Bake the pie for 35 minutes. 8. Remove from the oven and garnish with a ring of tomato slices. Per serving: 441 calories/1717kJ; Protein 9g; Carbs 48g; Sugar 5g; Fat 21g (of which saturates 3g); Fibre 5g; Sodium 553mg.

2. Place the tofu, and all the other ingredients, except the strawberries, in a blender and process until smooth and creamy. 3. Pour the mixture into lolly moulds and then drop the strawberry slices into each mould. Freeze for at least 3 hours to ensure the lollies are totally frozen. After 20 minutes freezing, insert clean lolly sticks or cocktail sticks for handles. Per serving: 115 calories / 480kJ; Protein 4g; Carbs 15g; Sugar 14g; Fat 4g (of which saturates 1g); Fibre 1g; Sodium 190mg.

These recipes are featured in The Great American Detox Diet. See page 33 for details. © Alex Jamieson. Published with kind permission.

The Vegan l Autumn 2005

23


BUNNY LOVE: RESCUING RABBITS Kate Fowler-Reeves

Celebrating International Rabbit Day, Kate Fowler-Reeves rabbits on about the love of her life. While 24th September is International Rabbit Day, every day is Rabbit Day chez moi. When Regal Rabbits, supplier to the vivisection trade, closed in 2000, I, like many others, was introduced to caring for those long-eared, scut-waggling critters for the first time. Bert was one of the last juveniles to come from the Regal sheds and he stole my heart. He would career through our house, with his side-kick Manuel – rescued from a pet trade breeder – just a couple of hops behind, until he came across an object in his path. Instead of circumnavigating it as any other animal might have done, Bert would pick up the offending article and fling it as far as he could before carrying on. Other endearing habits included routinely bisecting the phone line, stripping and eating wallpaper, and sleeping on his back so our hearts stopped at least once a day until we could verify that he hadn’t died. Since meeting Bert, I have opened my home and my heart to rabbits. Walking into the sheds at Regal was a terrible shock: such horror to walk along row after row of wire cages, each containing one rabbit standing on a bare mesh floor. No bedding, no stimulation and little room to move. Running, jumping, digging and playing – the raisons d’être for rabbits – were impossible. The does were especially fearful and one girl screamed in terror as I tried to approach her. I can only imagine what had happened to instil such fear in her. One of those breeding does, Doreen, lived with me for almost three years but never became comfortable in the presence of humans; she was too frightened even to walk past us unless we had our backs turned. But entering those sheds was also joyous for me because their owner had agreed to give up every single rabbit to good homes. And so he did, begrudgingly. The thousands of rabbits imprisoned inside farms around the country – bred for meat, the pet trade and laboratories – have little such hope.

Shortly after Regal Rabbits closed, I entered another rabbit farm to film its atrocities. This was a smaller farm with just one shed, the inhabitants of which were destined to end up on someone’s plate. Outside the shed stood a bin, filled to the brim with dead and decomposing rabbits. Inside, the sight was hardly less distressing. The familiar barren cages housed beautiful but sick white rabbits, so broken-spirited by their miserable existence that they barely managed to thump their feet as I walked by.

WELFARE LEGISLATION: THE BARE MINIMUM The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) has issued a Code of Welfare to encourage rabbit farmers to adopt ‘high standards’. The code recommends, among other things, that each rabbit over 12 weeks is allowed 0.07m2 of space and that farmed rabbits should be free from fear and able to display most normal patterns of behaviour. Alone in a cage? DEFRA’s only recommendation about slaughter is that it is done ‘humanely’. With such worthless recommendations and no binding, enforced laws or meaningful convictions for breaching what laws do exist, it is little wonder that rabbits, along with all other farmed species, suffer appallingly. As for pet trade breeders, anyone can breed and sell rabbits, and standards vary. Of the two breeders I have visited, one had a dozen rabbits and five of those had serious, untreated conditions; the other kept rabbits in a chest of drawers. And don’t get me started on the horrors of pet shops.

RASCALLY RABBITS

Only when giving birth are many farmed rabbits supplied with bedding material.

24

The Vegan l Autumn 2005

Today, five rabbits live with me. Stan, my disabled bunny (whom you may have spotted modelling in an anti-fur advert with Coronation Street’s Kate Ford), was rescued from the meat trade. Storm Cloud was dumped and found wandering the streets in Kent. Her boyfriend*, Hamish, was left in a squat after its occupants vanished. Miranda was abandoned because she hates people, almost certainly as a consequence of the way she has been treated. Nicknamed ‘the Queen of Mean’, she still attacks us almost every day even though she has only known love and care in the past two years. Her boyfriend is a partially-blind, almost-deaf rabbit named Chas who was overlooked at a sanctuary for years because nobody wants a big lumbering white rabbit when there are smaller, cuter, more colourful ones available. People can be so shallow.


to being handled (as many do) can lead to the shredding of arms and the gossiping of neighbours about whether you might actually be a drug-user or a self-harmer. But teeth should also be checked regularly as there are many problems that can arise in a rabbit’s mouth. Wild rabbits nibble at grass constantly because their guts must keep moving. If a bunny stops eating for any reason she can be in big trouble. Gastro-intestinal stasis can lead to death pretty quickly and veterinary advice must be sought urgently if a rabbit goes off her food. To help their digestion grass and/or fresh hay must be available all day every day and green vegetables limited. Taking care of rabbits is not for the faint-hearted. They can be difficult to handle, stubborn and rude, but remember that old adage about ‘nothing worth having comes without effort’. The pleasure I get from watching these complex and intriguing animals run, jump and play, fling plant pots around, dig holes, chase, cuddle and groom one another, far outweighs the work and the worry they bring. Remembering those rabbits locked inside factory-farm sheds, their existence miserable and their future violent, I am honoured to be able to rescue just a few individuals from such terror, even if they don’t appear to appreciate it all that much.

Life begins: rabbits rescued from the vivisection trade explore their new home. Their day begins at 6am when they are let out of their Wendy Houses (rabbits generally hate being locked in hutches and I have to concur). While one pair stretch themselves out in the sun or hide under their tee-pee from the rain in their 9m2 run, the other pair explore the rest of the garden, often razing plants to the ground or sitting beneath the bird feeders waiting for nuts to fall. Throughout the day the pairs are swapped over. When I go to bed, I put them away again with a big bowl of food and some fresh vegetables. And a small piece of Hob Nob. Rabbits love Hob Nobs.

Kate Fowler-Reeves is a seasoned campaigner, working in the field of animal rights education and research. Born free: a young wild rabbit enjoys life as it should be.

Rabbits in the wild are most active at dawn and dusk and domesticated rabbits like those hours best, too. This is why I get up at the crack of dawn and make sure they have the run of the garden until late in the evening. The garden is rabbit-proofed, with wire fencing dug down all the way around it. Storm Cloud – the most intelligent rabbit I have ever met – has dug a long burrow beside the house which all four able-bodied rabbits use as a bolt-hole if they get spooked. Shining a torch down the tunnel, I see she has done a marvellous job. It measures about five feet in length and ends in a chamber where bunnies can cuddle up, turn around or stretch out. Very nice work. HEALTH AND WELLBEING There is no doubt that rabbits are high maintenance, and they can present an astounding array of illnesses, diseases and conditions. In the five years I have been fostering and adopting rabbits I have had to deal with broken bones, mucoid enteritis, myxomatosis, heart attacks, cancer, syphilis, ear mites, ear infections, teeth problems, a disintegrating jaw bone, coccidiosis, temporary paralysis, brain damage, depression and abscesses. In the summer months rabbits, like sheep, are prone to fly-strike. Houses and runs must be cleaned at least every other day and all bunnies must have their bottoms checked every day to ensure that they are clean and free from fly eggs or larvae. Checking rabbits who object

Bert discovers that the vegetable rack is almost as tasty as the phone line.

* All my bunnies are neutered or spayed

The Vegan l Autumn 2005

25


GROW VEGAN Graham Cole of Vegan-Organic Network

A FRUITY STORY Just a couple of miles off the Lleyn Peninsula in North Wales lies the remote and windswept Bardsey Island - a place with old Celtic and, later, Christian connections; a place of pilgrimage and the site of an interesting discovery by an organic gardener and bird watcher in the autumn of 1999. An old apple tree was found growing by the side of one of the island’s houses, standing on its own (a few other apple trees grow at the other end of the island) and doing well despite the strong winds that hit the island. It was apparent that the old tree was disease-free - a rare thing in North Wales with its damp and often sunless climate. A sample of the fruit was taken to the National Fruit Collection in Kent where they failed to recognise the apple as a previously known variety. The lone tree on Bardsey was unique. It has been around for about a hundred years and could be the last surviving tree from a monastic orchard. A lot of the old apple varieties came into existence by the sowing of pips, which can be a variable experience as quite often you get a humble crab apple, but occasionally a completely new variety can come about, the most famous example being the Cox. From then onwards it is possible to keep a variety of tree fruit in cultivation by propagation of young wood grafted onto a rootstock. So, now a nurseryman in North Wales is producing lots of young Bardsey Apple trees to keep this interesting survivor going into the 21st century and we need to see how it performs in different parts of the UK, on different soils and situations. I read about the Bardsey Apple last winter, bought and planted a fine strong maiden (one-year-old) in March on M26 (semidwarfing) rootstock and it is growing very well after I pruned it to get the shoots necessary to train into the decorative Espalier shape. There are a few apple trees nearby to cross-pollinate, as most apples need another variety flowering at the same time to set a crop. The fact that this variety is free from diseases such as scab, canker and mildew is good – it’s a tough old tree. Apparently the apples are delicious, crisp

Grow Vegan Puzzler Q. What is the name given to a one-yearold sapling tree? Send your answer on a postcard to The Vegan Society (address details on page 1) by 22nd September 2005 to be in with a chance of winning a copy of Vegan by Tony Weston and Yvonne Bishop. Summer Grow Vegan Answer: Gardener’s shadow. Winner: S. Brewer, Somerset.

Bardsey Apple showing young growth and juicy with a tantalising lemon aroma. I am really looking forward to finding out and reporting back. It will be good to have some trees being grown vegan-organically. I will mention this on the Bardsey Apple website bulletin board, which has been set up so treegrowers can disseminate their observations quickly and widely. So far we don’t know if the tree flowers are frost-tolerant or if it produces a regular crop. The mother tree crops irregularly because spring’s salt-laden gales often kill the blossom - not much chance of that in my Hampshire garden! Also no-one knows the best time to harvest the fruit or how long it can be kept. If you are interested in obtaining one of these very rare trees to help save it from oblivion visit www.bardseyapple.co.uk or contact the grower, Ian Sturrock, on 01248 371 573. Part of the purchase price goes to the Bardsey Island Trust to protect this nature reserve where many birds, rare plants and even dolphins and porpoises can be seen.

AUTUMN IS COMING A good time to plan, order and plant all new tree fruit, soft fruit, shrubs and hardy perennials. Fill the planting hole with a mixture of good compost and soil, adding grit to improve drainage on heavy soils; the conventional advice is to add bone meal for slow release nutrients, instead of this noxious substance vegan growers can add seaweed meal or 5F compound fertiliser from Fertile Fibre (www.fertilefibre.co.uk, tel: 01432 853111). By the end of September all overwintering green manures such as tares, clover, trefoil, lucerne, field beans and Hungarian rye should be sown. In the colder districts of the UK, sow a little earlier so a good covering of vacant ground can be achieved before the growing season halts. Valuable nutrient-rich winter crops such as corn salad, winter purslane, parsley and winter lettuce should immediately be sown undercover and planted out under glass, plastic or fleece to provide regular fresh green leaves. If some bare ground can’t be covered in time by green manures then some organic matter such as half-rotted or fully broken down leaf mould, compost or straw can be spread to protect the soil structure and conserve plant foods from the worst of the winter. Seed suppliers: Suffolk Herbs; Tamar Organics. Tree crops and soft fruit: Agroforestry Research Trust Vegan-Organic Network (VON), registered charity number 1080847, has a wide network of interactive supporters, gives advice, publishes information sheets, runs courses on vegan-organics, helps people find work experience on veganorganic farms, holds local meetings and organises visits to vegan farms. VON publishes Growing Green International, a magazine full of information and debate on cruelty-free growing and its ethical basis; please become a VON supporter and help our progress! For details contact: Patrick Browne, VON, 161 Hamilton Rd, Longsight, Manchester M13 0PQ. veganorganic@riseup.net General enquiries to: 0845 223 5232 (local rate) www.veganorganic.net

The Vegan l Autumn 2005

27


Over 60 and looking for a Vegetarian/Vegan Home in East Sussex or Colwyn Bay? We have a few fully self-contained single/double flats recently refurbished and available to rent now in our sheltered homes. Our charges include a mid-day meal (optional) and otherwise residents cook for themselves and lead an independent life within peaceful and picturesque surroundings, amongst others who share a common interest. If you feel you would enjoy the companionship of other vegetarians and vegans please contact: The Secretary The Vegetarian Housing Association PO Box 193 Hastings TN34 2WT 01424 757851 Mon-Thurs (inclusive) 9.30am – 12.30pm email: Jayne@veghousing.org.uk (You are welcome to leave a message outside of office hours and we will respond at the earliest convenience.)


CURIOUS VEGETABLES: SWEET CORN Bill Laws

American Indians traditionally performed a respectful ritual when they sowed their corn. Sowing their lima beans around the plants (they used the maize stems for support), they waited for the cobs to ripen. The first were ceremonially cut and baked in the embers of the fire during the Green Corn Festival. This reverence harked back to the days when Hiawatha slew the great green god Mondamin. The plant that grew up from Mondamin’s grave rescued Hiawatha’s people from starvation. It was that versatile vegetable, maize. This tall, swaying member of the grass family goes by a lexicon of names from sweet or Indian corn to mealies, corn flakes and popcorn. The Mexicans called it cintli, but the Cuban Indians dubbed it maisi.

It was the Cuban plant that Columbus brought to Europe. One garden author, E.A.Bunyard, recommended adopting ‘the principle of the lathe’ when eating corn straight from the cob. Americans did so with enthusiasm - they even used the cob as a disposable tobacco pipe. The US population thrived on their corn-fed diet: between 1810 and 1910 their population grew from a mere 6 million to a Bill Laws is staggering 94 million. the author of Spade, No wonder it’s now the Skirret and world’s most popular Parsnip vegetable. The Curious History of Vegetables (Sutton Publishing).

The Vegan l Autumn 2005

29


TESTING CHLORELLA AS A POSSIBLE SOURCE OF B12

O

ver a year ago, The Vegan Society embarked on a collaborative trial, along with Chlorella Products Ltd, of chlorella as a source of vitamin B12. The Society acted as a contact point for soliciting volunteers and Chlorella Products Ltd funded the trial, showing an outstanding commitment to testing whether their product was an effective source of vitamin B12 for humans.

Sophisticated chemical testing in Japan had indicated that chlorella contained mostly true vitamin B12 and very little inactive analogues, while the opposite was true for most other seaweeds and algae, including spirulina. Spirulina was therefore expected to give no improvement in B12 status while it was considered likely that chlorella would be effective. High levels of methylmalonic acid (MMA) in urine indicate inadequate vitamin B12 stores, and previous studies had shown B12 supplements or fortified foods to be effective in reducing MMA levels. We therefore set out to compare the effect of chlorella and spirulina on MMA levels.

Vegan Bone Health Study Are you a female vegan aged between 25-45 years? Are you interested to know about your bone health? We are conducting a study which will be examining the difference in risk factors for bone fracture in vegan diet compared to non-vegan diet. The consultation will include an ultrasound (radiation free and painless) scan of the heel and a questionnaire and takes around 30 to 35 minutes in total. This will help to examine the role of nutritional influences on bone health, and volunteers will be given advice in order to maximize their bone health. If you would like to take part in this study, please arrange for a free bone scan. For an appointment please ring 0207-435 7830 and mention “the Vegan bone health study” The British College of osteopathic Medicine LeifHouse 120 Finchley Road (Opposite Finchley Road Station) London NW3 5HR

30

The Vegan l Autumn 2005

To test the effect we needed volunteers whose B12 levels were low enough to raise MMA above normal but not so low as to risk clinical deficiency. However, most of those volunteering for the trial were already taking supplements. Over 50 people were tested for urinary MMA levels but only nine showed evidence of insufficient B12 (MMA of 5 or higher). Three further marginal cases (MMA of 4) were added to give 12 trial participants (six taking chlorella and six taking spirulina). Five of these explicitly dropped out and two more failed to return the second urine sample required to test the effects of the algal supplements. Of the five who completed the trial, four were taking spirulina and only one was taking chlorella. Three of the four people taking spirulina had abnormal MMA levels at the beginning of the trial and all their MMA levels remained abnormal at the end of the trial. One showed a slight increase in MMA, one showed no change and one showed a slight decrease – confirming that spirulina had no effect. The one person taking chlorella who completed the trial had an initially abnormal MMA level (8), which was normal by the end of the trial (3). The results are consistent with the extensive chemical testing of the two algae. It is abundantly clear that spirulina is, as expected, not effective and should not be considered to be a source of usable B12. It seems likely that chlorella is an effective source of B12, but due to the small number of people completing the trial we still cannot definitively confirm this and therefore cannot recommend that chlorella can be relied upon as a sole source of B12. Both the Vegan Society and Chlorella Products Ltd are very disappointed that this trial has been inconclusive and that we cannot make a clearer recommendation at this time.


DIET MATTERS Sandra Hood, BSc (Hons), SRD

I take two 1000mcg B12 tablets per week. Is this too much? Many vegans are unsure how much vitamin B12 they should take. It has been shown that the amount absorbed from 2000mcg may be as little as 10mcg, but this is the amount needed per week to maintain adequate B12 levels. It is said that the same weekly absorbed amount can be obtained from a daily supplement of 10mcg. Therefore you may find it more convenient to take 2000mcg once a week. There is now a vitamin B12 powder available. Ideal for those who have problems swallowing tablets and for children, it can be sprinkled on food and added to dishes. Alternatively, it tastes fine just as it is! Foods with vitamin B12 added to them include certain varieties of yeast extract, TVP, margarine, non-dairy milk and breakfast cereals.

My mother has a BMI of 17 and has been told by her doctor to put on some weight. Have you any tips on gaining weight on a vegan diet? The recommended BMI (body mass index) is 18 to 25. Eating little and often makes it easier to increase energy (calorie) intake. If her appetite is small, she should try not to fill up on too much fibre, which can make a diet bulky, making it very easy to feel full before you have had enough calories. For example, peel some of the fruits and vegetables to cut down on bulk, add nuts, seeds and dried fruits to dishes. Vegetable oils, nut and seed butters, avocados and margarines are all high in calories. When cooking rice, pasta or potatoes add extra margarines and oils. Try adding pastry toppings to vegetable stews, putting in dumplings and serve with ‘creamy’ sauces made with yeast flakes, non-dairy milk, margarine and soya cream. Popular breakfast cereals such as porridge and instant oat cereals can be made with cream, ground almonds and dried fruit. Try fruit smoothies with bananas, ground nuts and fortified non-dairy milks or soya cream. If your mother likes cakes and biscuits, there is no harm in providing these as part of her healthy diet.

To find your BMI, divide your weight in kilograms by your height in metres squared. A BMI less than 18 is considered underweight and a BMI of 25 or more is classed as overweight.

Are parents aware that the vitamin K given to their child shortly after birth may contain cow bile? Probably not. The Chief Medical Officer and Chief Nursing Officer recommend that all newborn babies should receive vitamin K to prevent the small risk of intracranial bleeding (brain haemorrhage). Consent needs to be sought from parents beforehand but, of course, the parents are not told about the ingredients because very few health professionals are aware of the content of the vitamin K. The oral form of the vitamin contains glycocholic, which is derived from the gallbladders of cows, but the injection form is synthetic and suitable for vegans. This issue does not only involve vegans and vegetarians but the Hindu, Muslim and Jewish communities. The issue of adequate labelling of pharmaceutical products does need to be addressed, and this is something that The Vegan Society will be looking into in the future.

My GP says my acid stomach is due to my lifestyle but should I avoid acidic foods? Rushing around and not eating properly can cause acid stomach. A vegan diet tends to be quite alkaline in contrast to an omnivorous diet and there are only a few acidic fruits and vegetables. Everyone is different, so only avoid foods if you find they cause you a problem. Some acidic vegetables people suggest as being problematic are beetroot, olives, rhubarb and tomatoes. Some people find lemons, limes, grapefruit and oranges acidic but nothing has been proven scientifically. However, I would recommend that you avoid alcohol, coffee and tea, and be careful with fatty foods such as pastry and fried foods. Very sugary foods may also be a problem, together with spicy and hot foods. Some herb or fruit teas, such as dandelion and chamomile, may be helpful. A few other suggestions that you may find useful are: l l l l

Eat smaller meals at regular intervals Avoid eating late at night Stay sitting upright for at least 15 minutes after eating If you find it is particularly bad at night, try sleeping in a semi-upright position or with the head of the bed raised a few inches as this may help to prevent night-time symptoms of acid reflux l Avoid tight-fitting clothes l Try to exercise regularly The Vegan l Autumn 2005

31


Reviews Andy Lawson & Sundari Poorun

(VS) FOOD ALLERGY SURVIVAL GUIDE By Vesanto Melina, MS, RD, Jo Stepaniak, MSEd and Dina Aronson, MS, RD Publishers: Healthy Living Publications Cover price: £14.99 This guide to living and eating well without some of the most common allergens - not just eggs and dairy but also gluten, peanuts, soya, wheat, yeast and more – will be warmly welcomed by allergy and intolerance sufferers everywhere. Packed with information on how to avoid the foods and ingredients that trigger reactions, including advice on spotting the hidden allergens in processed foods, it also contains over 100 easy-tofollow recipes, all of which are vegan and can be easily adapted to suit specific tastes, making it perfect for anyone who has a food allergy or intolerance, or anyone who knows someone who does. The book is also co-authored by two dieticians, so you can be sure that all of the recipes are nutritionally balanced. At last: the proof that allergy-free doesn’t mean flavour-free! (VS) VEGANGAL DVD By Jill Ovnik Publishers: Vegangal.com Cover price: £10.99 This lively introduction to why we should be vegan and how easy and uplifting it can be includes everything you could ask for: it’s a guide to eating in restaurants, shopping in supermarkets* and cooking tasty meals for the whole family. If it’s comprehensive nutritional advice you are after, there are better sources of information. If, however, you are looking for a positive message combined with practical tips on becoming and being vegan, then this could be for you. SP *VeganGal is aimed at the US market, so those living elsewhere will have to adapt the shopping advice to suit the products available in their home country.

NEW FROM LINDA MAJZLIK (VS) A Vegan Taste of Central America By Linda Majzlik Publishers: Jon Carpenter ISBN: 1-897766-98-X Cover Price: £5.99 (VS) A Vegan Taste of East Africa By Linda Majzlik Publishers: Jon Carpenter ISBN: 1-897766-97-1 Cover Price: £5.99 Linda Majzlik’s ability to find the best vegan recipes from all four corners of the globe continues apace. A Vegan Taste of Central America features a wide selection of soups and grain dishes with ideas such as chilli porridge for the more adventurous. Central American cuisine, which has a heavy Spanish influence dating back to the 16th century, offers a very homely style of cooking, with the emphasis firmly on wholesome ingredients. A Vegan Taste of East Africa finds its base in the vast range of ethnic and tribal traditions of the area, where the diet is based around wholegrains and root vegetables, thick soups and stews, and specialty breads. East Africa has an array of tasty and satisfying dishes, almost entirely plant-based, which makes it all the more surprising that there are so few vegan cookbooks featuring the cuisine of the area. DON’T EAT THIS BOOK By Morgan Spurlock Publishers: Penguin ISBN: 0-141-02073-3 Cover price: £7.99 Best described as Fast Food Nation with fun thrown in, Don’t Eat This Book provides the background to Spurlock’s hit film Super Size Me and expands on the theme.

If you’ve seen the film, you should know what to expect; if you haven’t, where have you been?! The book provides more detail on the political and health issues surrounding fast food and gives Spurlock the chance to tell us a bit more about his reasons for going on a 30-day McDonald’s diet, and the effects this had on his health. As amusing as it is alarming, Don’t Eat This Book should help raise public awareness of the dangers of the fast-food industry.

THE GREAT AMERICAN DETOX DIET By Alex Jamieson Publishers: Rodale ISBN: 1-4050-7771-9 Cover price: £10.99 As the author makes clear from the start, The Great American Detox Diet isn’t about dieting at all. It’s a lifestyle guide to help readers junk the fastfood and embark on a lifetime of healthy eating. Jamieson takes us through an eight-week detox plan, starting with drinking more water, then ditching the added sugar and caffeine. Fats, carbs, protein and the home environment are also covered, with the emphasis throughout being that this is a permanent lifestyle change, not a quickfix solution. There are also over one hundred tasty recipes to get you started. The good news for us vegans is that we’re already part of the way there. Much of the advice involves cutting out animal products, which should come as no surprise as the author herself is vegan. Where there is the occasional mention of non-vegan things for people making the transition, it is made clear that the plantbased alternatives are preferable. The Great American Detox Diet is a great resource for anyone who is striving to improve their diet and an excellent advertisement for veganism. (See features, pages 12-15 and recipes, centre pages for more about both books)

(VS) Available from The Vegan Society - www.vegansociety.com/shop T. 01424 448832 The Vegan l Autumn 2005

33


µ


µ

Postbag

STAR LETTER

µ

Contributions to Postbag are welcomed, but accepted on the understanding that they may be edited in the interests of brevity or clarity.

CELEBRATING DIVERSITY

Please be careful when promoting the health-giving claims of veganism. I’m so sick of articles like the ‘vegan vitality’ one in your most recent issue. Some of us are in poor health and/or disabled - presumably we should stand out of sight so that we don’t spoil the pretty, perfect picture? I realise that it’s important to spread the message that veganism is healthy, but there’s a fine line between promotion and spin. Vegans come in all shapes, sizes and health levels please don’t exclude any of us. We should be proud of our diversity rather than concentrating purely on the superfit and healthy, as the variety of our community is our strength and helps to break stereotypes. Cathy Bryant By email

The author of this issue's Star Letter wins an 'Against Animal Tasting’ t-shirt.

I wasn’t convinced by Joan Dunayer’s article on speciesism. She says ‘nonspeciesists advocate basic rights for all sentient beings.’ Who decides which beings are sentient? Surely all creatures have their own experience of life and an interest in staying alive? I avoid products made from insects but I don’t know whether these insects are sentient; I just know I don’t want them killed to fill my plate.

Also, according to Joan, nonspeciesist law would give nonhumans ‘full personhood.’ Great! I can sue the wild birds and my neighbour’s cat for defecating in my garden, thereby causing a health hazard to my children. So it’s off to animal prison for wrongdoers, if they’re equal to humans? No, because they don’t know any better – they’re animals! I think we should try to treat all animals (‘sentient’ or not!) kindly at the same time as recognising that they are not equal to humans. Not equal? Oh dear – now I’m worried I may be speciesist. I’d better go and lie down – assuming, of course, the bed bugs don’t bite. Now there should be a law against that! Yours sincerely, Rebecca Zugor Chichester

KEEPING OUR BALANCE I disagree with Daniel’s sentiments in his letter published in the summer edition (‘Unrelated Radicalism’). I recently re-joined the Society after a lengthy absence of membership and found the last magazine a really outstanding read. Probably the pick of the articles was the one concerning Iraqi street kids and feeding them vegan food. That Welsh couple were amazing, let’s have more of people who get out and try to change the world; for me that’s the importance of the whole package of labelling yourself vegan, not just living in a vegan bubble avoiding animal produce. Alan www.cetaceadefence.org By email

The spring edition of The Vegan was, I think, the best in the series of vegan magazines the Society has produced so far. I found the articles very interesting, especially Laurence Main’s walk, the experiences that vegans have in different countries (in this case Iraq), and I was particularly pleased to read that the society offers support to vegan organisations being set up around the world. I also particularly welcome the recent submissions from the Vegan-Organic Trust. I found that the issue of balance did not arise for me. Everyone inevitably reads the magazine differently and has their own perception of it; I, for one, very much enjoyed it. Thanks, Kevin Watkinson Leeds

SPECIOUS SPECIESISM?

I started to read Joan Dunayer’s article ‘From Speciesism to Equality’ with interest, but quickly became disturbed by her apparent lack of understanding of Singer’s ethics, which she so heavily criticised. Singer does indeed frequently place greater importance on humans of normal intelligence and other ‘higher’ mammals, such as primates, than other animals. But not from unthinking speciesism. As I understand his philosophy, he does so because he believes that they have a greater capacity for suffering, and therefore in terms of reduction of the world’s suffering they are of greater importance.

Just as it is not racist to recognise the differences between cultures and to accept the differing needs and requirements arising from these differences, and just as it is not sexist to recognise the differences between men and women and accord them parity rather than equality, so it is not speciesist to acknowledge differences between species and attempt to formulate a framework that most reduces the suffering in this world based on this understanding. As for Joan’s vision of the future, it seems both naive and simplistic, although I hope that this appearance is merely due to the constraints of an article in which she did not have the space to properly expound her views. All of which said, however, unlike Daniel (the author of last issue’s ‘Star Letter’), I welcome the appearance of this article, and others like it that are similarly thoughtprovoking and radical. Without them, The Vegan risks becoming little more than a source of recipes and product information.

Joan Dunayer’s article in the summer Vegan is so holier-thanthou, so ‘look at me I have the moral high ground’. No wonder so many vegetarians shy away from the perceived fundamentalism of becoming a vegan. The article is all head and no heart. It was socialising with a herd of cows in a field that made me a vegetarian in 1978; it was another ten years before I became vegan. I simply felt I could not consume products that relied on killing my friends. It was not difficult. It led to better health and new perceptions of the world. It was in my own best interests, certainly not a moral question. I do not regard vegetarians or meat-eaters as wrong. They are just missing out on a whole new life, with a whole new set of moral dilemmas. In friendship, John Myhill Norwich

John Davis Stroud The Vegan l Autumn 2005

35


VEGAN SOCIETY LOCAL CONTACTS Note: Local Contacts are Vegan Society members who have offered to act, on a voluntary basis, as a point of contact for those interested in the Society's work. They are not official representatives of the Society. Their levels of activity and knowledge may vary according to their individual circumstances. When writing to a Contact please remember to enclose a SAE. Local Contacts' Coordinator: Patricia Tricker - see under Yorkshire

36

The Vegan l Autumn 2005


LOCAL CONTACTS

NEWS

The big news since last time is the Society’s decision, after months of discussion and research, to look for offices in Birmingham with a view to moving in the first half of 2006. Local contacts were informed as soon as the decision was reached and many people have volunteered to help during and after the transition period. Moving from the South Coast to the Heart of England will inevitably mean a certain amount of upheaval, especially for our hard-working and dedicated staff. I must therefore thank the Birmingham group for their incredibly warm and helpful reaction and the many messages of support and offers of help sent by individual members. Whatever problems are encountered during the move, lack of a warm welcome won’t be one of them! In addition to the friendliness of the people, the constant theme of reactions from around the country has been the vastly greater accessibility of our proposed new home, not just for media and exhibition centres but for volunteers from all over the country. Wherever you are, your offers of help and support will be much appreciated. On a more mundane topic, you will notice a slight change in the way Groups are listed in this issue. As we now have five groups that are not limited to a specific geographical area they are now listed accordingly. The fact that they are at the end of the list doesn’t mean that they are less important. The Young Indian Vegetarians and Vegans, for instance, is probably the oldest (despite its name) and is certainly one of the largest of all the groups listed. Contact Nitin for a copy of their latest newsletter and note that you don’t have to be Indian (or young!) to attend their events. There are four new groups this time and three new Local Contacts. It's especially gratifying to have a contact and a group in the Channel Islands, where Sarah has offered to advise on vegan-friendly places to stay and eat. Cathy helps to run Manveg and Sue has been a Leicester Group Contact for some time. Kevin’s fledgling group is holding a free Vegan Food Fair at St Stephen’s Church in Redditch town centre on Saturday 8 October between 11am and 3pm and would be grateful for offers of help. The current contact for the Harrow Group would like to step down as soon as a replacement can be found, so if you fancy running or helping to run the Harrow Group please let me know. Finally, don’t let the fact that summer will soon be over get you down because there’s lots to look forward to in the autumn (see Events list for details), including the ever-popular London Vegan Festival on 25 September and the Italian festival the first week in October. The Society’s AGM will be held in Bristol on Saturday 30 October, with a short meeting for Local and Group Contacts and potential contacts before the AGM itself. The venue has been specially chosen so that you can make a weekend of it and enjoy the fabulous Bristol Vegan Festival the previous day. I hope to see lots of you there! Patricia Tricker, National Local Contacts’ Coordinator

The Vegan l Autumn 2005

37


LOCAL GROUPS NEWS There is no formal Vegan Society affiliation. Any group can be listed but it must obvious from the name that it is for vegans and not just vegetarians and the contact person must be a full member of the Vegan Society. Please let the Local Contacts’ Coordinator (details on facing page – please do not contact the Office) know if you wish to start a group and of any groups omitted. Those listed for the first time have ** before their name.

38

The Vegan l Autumn 2005


events

Updated diaries and events information can be viewed at www.vegansociety.com

n AUGUST Saturday 27th Vegan-Organic Event - Welsh College Of Horticulture An introduction to the pioneering stockfree-organic work of the College in Mold, North Wales. £18 (£9 concessions). Booking essential. Call the Vegan-Organic Network on 0845 2235232 or email veganorganic@riseup.net

n SEPTEMBER 1st – 10th The 3rd Vegan ‘n’ Vegetarian dolphin camp, Wales A chance to see dolphins amongst kindred spirits. www.cetaceadefence.org Sunday 11th London Festival of Life Celebrating health, permaculture, raw food and spirituality. Conway Hall, 25 Red Lion Square, Holborn, London WC1R 4RL. www.festivaloflife.net Saturday 24th – Sunday 25th *Nutrition and Health Show, London Olympia 2 Exhibition Centre, Kensington. 10am-6pm Talk by Stephen Walsh Saturday 5 pm. www.nutritionandhealthshow.co.uk For possible free tickets call 020 7928 7459 Sunday 25th *London Vegan Festival – Sponsored by The Vegan Society Kensington Town Hall, Hornton Street, London W8. 10am-7pm. Stalls, talks, vegan catering. Contact CALF, T. 020 8670 9585 www.londonveganfestival.org.uk. See feature, page 20.

n OCTOBER Saturday 1st – Friday 7th 9th European Vegetarian Congress Celebrating the 20th anniversary of the European Vegetarian Union. Riccione, Italy. All catering will be vegan. T. 020 7928 7459 or +39 02 45471720 www.vegetarianet.com Saturday 1st World Vegetarian Day Saturday 1st Vegan-Organic Event - Hardwick Market Gardens Visit Iain Tolhurst’s vegan-organic market garden near Reading. £18 (£9 concessions). Booking essential. Call

Sunday 16th World Food Day Marked by a Worldwide Day of Action Against McDonald’s. www.mcspotlight.org Saturday 29th – Saturday November 5th UK Vegan Week A week dedicated to the celebration of all things vegan! Kicking off with… Saturday 29th *Bristol Vegan Fayre – Sponsored by The Vegan Society Over 70 stalls plus a full line-up of speakers and entertainers covering all aspects of the vegan lifestyle. Featuring free vegan food and nutritional advice. The L-Shed, Princess Wharf, Wapping Road, Bristol. 10am-6pm. Contact Yaoh, T. 0117 923 9053 email info@yaoh.co.uk www.yaoh.co.uk. See feature, page 20. Sunday 30th *Vegan Society AGM The Elmgrove Centre, Elmgrove Road, Cotham, Bristol BS6 6AH. Doors open and Local Contacts meeting 1 pm. AGM begins 2 pm. Crèche and refreshments available.

n NOVEMBER Tuesday 1st 12th World Vegan Day and The Vegan Society’s 61st birthday Happy Birthday to vegans! T. 0845 4588 244 www.worldveganday.org Saturday 12th * 35th Animal Charities Fair, London 10.30am-6pm Chelsea Old Town Hall, King’s Road SW3. Veg*n and animal charities stalls. Gifts, cards, food, etc. Saturday 12th * Viva! Incredible Veggie Show, London 10am-5.30 pm Wembley conference and exhbition centre. Stalls, food, talks, cookery demonstrations, etc. www.viva.org.uk

n DECEMBER Sunday 4th * Christmas Without Cruelty Fayre Kensington Town Hall, Hornton Street, London W8 (opposite High Street Kensington tube station). www.animalaid.org.uk T. 01732 364546. Saturday 10th International Day for Animal Rights Calling for fundamental rights to be bestowed upon non-human animals by 2048 (100 years after the Declaration of Human Rights on this date). www.uncaged.co.uk T.0114 272 2220.

Sunday 2nd Annual Irish Vegfest St Andrew’s Resource Centre, Pearse Street, Dublin 2. Contact niall@thumped.com

Saturday 10th East Midlands Vegan Festival The Council House, Market Square, Nottingham. 11am to 5pm. Organised by House of Life. T. 0845 458 9595, veganfestival@veggies.org.uk

World Farm Animals Day www.wfad.org

* Vegan Society stalls at these events

LISTINGS Patrons Serena Coles Freya Dinshah Maneka Gandhi Dr. Michael Klaper Moby Cor Nouws Wendy Turner-Webster Donald Watson Benjamin Zephaniah Council Jay Ashra Alex Bourke (Chair) Chris Childe Vanessa Clarke Laurence Klein (Hon Treasurer) Laurence Main Ian Nicoll George Rodger (Vicechair) Stephen Walsh (Deputy Treasurer) National Local Contacts Co-ordinator Patricia Tricker Staff Chief Executive Officer Janet Pender Bookkeeper / PA Jody Hazell Head of Information Services Catriona Toms Head of Marketing and IT David Palmer Business Development Officer Sebastian Pender Information Officer Vacant Membership and Sales Officer Sundari Poorun Membership and Sales Assistant Peter Richardson Sales Assistant John Rawden Volunteers Michaela Altman (proofreader) Erica Wilson Dietary Consultant Sandra Hood

VEGANISM may be defined as a way of living which seeks to exclude, as far as possible and practical, all forms of exploitation of, and cruelty to, animals for food, clothing or any other purpose. In dietary terms it refers to the practice of dispensing with all animal produce — including meat, fish, poultry, eggs, animal milks, honey, and their derivatives. Abhorrence of the cruel practices inherent in an agricultural system based on the abuse of animals is probably the single most common reason for the adoption of veganism, but many people are drawn to it for health, ecological, resource, spiritual and other reasons. If you would like more information on veganism a free Information Pack is available from the Vegan Society in exchange for two first class stamps. THE VEGAN SOCIETY was formed in England in November 1944 by a group of vegetarians who had recognised the ethical compromises implicit in lactovegetarianism (ie dairy dependent). Today, the Society continues to highlight the breaking of the strong maternal bond between the cow and her new-born calf within just four days; the dairy cow’s proneness to lameness and mastitis; her subjection to an intensive cycle of pregnancy and lactation; our unnatural and unhealthy taste for cow’s milk; and the de-oxygenation of river water through contamination with cattle slurry. If you are already a vegan or vegan sympathiser, please support the Society and help increase its influence by joining. Increased membership means more resources to educate and inform.

The Vegan l Autumn 2005

39


VEGAN LUXURY HOTEL/CHATEAU Project needs financial partners We plan to buy a large hotel in the warm coastal France or Spain with restaurant, extensive grounds, pool, healing centre etc, to be the heart of an non- denominational meditation community for around 50 members, either full or part-time. Full residency shares available at ÂŁ50,000- ÂŁ100,000 or less on a time-share basis. Must be extremely open-minded and have a great sense of humour! And be a committed vegan! Money back guarantee option! Send some info about yourself and your preferred financial involvement to Paula and Charlie at: abundancevegan@yahoo.co.nz We have already established a similar project in Golden Bay, New Zealand.


CLASSIFIEDS (UK) HOLIDAY ACCOMMODATION CORNWALL

HAMPSHIRE NEW FOREST Veg*n guest house (“The Barn”) - Perfect for walking, cycling etc. B&B from £24pppn - ensuite, n/s evening meals. 023 8029 2531 or www.veggiebarn.net

ISLE OF WIGHT

DISCOUNT CARD

DISCOUNT CARD

This card entitles the bearer to discounts at a range of outlets, restaurants and hotels. A full list of discounts is available from The Vegan Society.

THE VEGAN VALID FROM

september 2005 UNTIL

NOVEMBER 2005 REFERENCE CODE

Ref: ISL 005 CUMBRIA

LANCASHIRE

WALES SCOTLAND DEVON

SOUTH DEVON B&B. Beautiful cliff-top / peaceful cove location. Wonderful views and walks. £20 pppn. 0845 4589257

DORSET

PEMBROKESHIRE. A warm welcome & good food (exclusively Veg/Vegan) in modern bungalow. Close to Newgale beach. Coastal paths to explore. Green Haven B&B - Tel. 01437 710756

SOUTH WEST WALES tranquillity, natural beauty and friendliness. Self-catering cottages only metres from sandy beach and lovely walks. Heated outdoor swimming pool and excellent facilities. Eco-friendly owners. Tel 01267 241654 www.innisfreeholidays.co.uk POWYS - Machynlleth. B&B overlooking spectacular mid-Wales scenery. Centre for Alternative Technology nearby. Delicious organic veggie / vegan breakfasts. 01654 702562 www.dyfiguest.co.uk

ARTICLES AND ADVERTISEMENTS TO BE SUBMITTED BY 22ND SEPTEMBER 2005 FOR INCLUSION IN THE WINTER 2005 ISSUE OF THE VEGAN

The Vegan l Autumn 2005

41


CLASSIFIEDS EATING OUT

DISCOUNT CARD

FEMALE, 58 outside, 30 inside, nonsmoking, seeking a caring partner. Must love dogs. Loves walking, cycling, wildlife and quiet tranquility. Must have a good sense of humour. LONELY VEGAN MALE, 57, seeks kindly female as pen-pal and/or friendship, outings, etc... Lives in Dorset. Loves books and the arts.

people

Donald Watson House 7 Battle Road St. Leonards on Sea East Sussex TN37 7AA

animals

KINDNESS UNLIMITED. The international network for vegan/vegetarian Christians. Those still searching may join the SEEKERS group. Membership of our correspondence and email groups is free. For details write to KU, 55 Long Street, Wigston, Leicestershire, LE18 2AJ or email:

environment

Tel: 0845 45 88244 Fax: 01424 717064 info@vegansociety.com www.vegansociety.com

AMERICAN VEGAN MALE (40's) into music, pets, etc. is looking for English female for lasting relationship with a view to starting a family.

THE VEGAN DISCOUNT CARD YORKSHIRE WHITBY B&B FALCON GUESTHOUSE. Vegan/vegetarian Quiet location, seven minutes’ walk from centre and harbour. Lounge and sunny breakfast room. Tea making facilities. No smoking throughout. Ample breakfast, with organic fare. £20 p.p.p.n. (for couple). Tel 01947 603507

KERALA, SOUTH INDIA a vegan’sparadise. Tours, accommodation including selfcatering. Brochure: Tel: 01892 722440, Voice Mail/Fax: 01892 724913. E-mail: info@keralaconnect.co.uk Website: www.keralaconnect.co.uk ALPUJARRAS - ANDALUCIA Attractive townhouse. Sunny, roof terrace. Excellent views, birds, walks. Wholefood shops and restaurants serving veggie food in town. Sleeps 2 - 6. From £230 pw. Available all year. Tel:01736 753555. email: WEST CORK vegetarian self catering apartments for singles,couples and families in peaceful wooded surroundings. Organic vegetables, bread & vegan wholefoods available. Reasonable rates. Green Lodge, Trawnamadree, Ballylickey, Bantry, Co Cork, Ireland.Tel.003532 web:http://homepage.eircom.net/~greenlodge or Text 353861955451

HOLIDAYS ABROAD

PUBLICATIONS VEGAN VIEWS - informal quarterly for Vegan Opinion. Sample copy £1. 4 issues £4 inc p&p. Harry Mather, Flat A15, 20 Dean Park Road, Bournemouth BH1 1JB SUNSHINE AND SHADOW. Autobiography of Wilfred Crone, well-known vegan/fruitarian. £7.50 inc P&P. Harry Mather, Flat A15, 20 Dean Park Road, Bournemouth BH1 1JB

42

The Vegan l Autumn 2005

MISCELLANEOUS GREEN/DIY FUNERALS Eco-friendly inexpensive coffins, memorial treeplanting. Please send £1 in unused stamps with A5 size 35p SAE to Box 328 HOMEOPATH. Aubrey Burge LBSH. RSHom. Treating you towards good health. All remedies carried on a vegan base. Clinic in Wiltshire or reasonable distance home consultations welcome. Tel 01980 630601 for more information.

PERSONAL


INTERNET SERVICES

ACCOMMODATION VEGAN ACTRESS seeks room in (strictly) non-smoking house/flat in London. Will be happy to look after pets! Please

THE VEGETARIAN CHARITY Needy young vegans up to the age of 25 years can receive grants from the charity, which also provides funds to promote vegetarianism among the young. Donations and legacies are most welcome to ensure that we continue to satisfy the need for help. For further information contact: The Vegetarian Charity 6 Coxbank, Audlem Cheshire CW3 0EW

Registered Charity No 294767

HOUSE TO LET. Attractive, 3-bedroomed house available to rent in Worcestershire, initially from February-August 2006. Two miles from Worcester, easy access to M5 yet short walk from country lanes, church and pub. Beautifully decorated with stripped pine floor, lovely garden and pleasant neighbours! Suit professional person/couple; children under one and cats welcome. Rent £650 pcm; deposit/references required.

HUMAN WRITES is a non-profit humanitarian organisation offering support to death row prisoners through letter writing. Please make someone’s life better with your letters. For details, SAE to: 343a Carlton Hill, Carlton, Nottingham, NG4 1JE. Thanks!

To place a personal ad please send your wording (max 35 words) and £6 payment, specifying in which section you would like your ad to appear. Please add £2 if you would like a box number.

PRACTITIONERS VEGAN BUT STILL SICK? Vegan health practitioner available for consultations, personal health retreats, iridology, fasting supervision, emotional healing, etc.

CHAMPION JUICER 2000+, Brand New, White, £220 free P&P. Please send email with name/address/contact tel. no. to:

WALKING BOOTS, vegan, As New, worn twice. Ethical Wares "Weald 2". Black, size: 6.5 (40). Unisex. Nikwax waterproofed. All-season. One-piece upper, sewn-in bellows tongue. Hydro-tex water-resistant lining, nylon / Vibram sole. Can email you photo Offers over £48 + P&P £5.20 Tel 01305 783621

for free brochure.

CONDITIONS OF ACCEPTANCE: Advertisements are accepted subject to their satisfying the condition that the products advertised are entirely free from ingredients derived from animals; that neither products nor ingredients have been tested on animals; and that the

OPPORTUNITIES

content of such ads does not promote, or appear to promote, the use of nonvegan commodities. Books, records, tapes, etc. mentioned in advertisements should not contain any material contrary to vegan principles. Advertisements may

Bristol based AROMAFOODS is now planning to expand to the South East,the Midlands the North of England and to Ireland. We are looking for interested parties who under licence will produce locally & market our unique snacks in these areas. For further info, please visit www.aromafoods.org.uk or call Peter on 0800 0744 876 VEGAN FREELANCE PHOTOGRAPHER Looking for a photographer? Need to advertise your products? Special expertise in food photography. For location or studio photography please

Irish female vegan 40, honest, and kind hearted seeks sincere veggies and vegans, male and female for friendship. I am into music, theatre cinema and having fun, a good sense of humour essential. Box No 656

DIVINE FROG web services. A vegan business. Website design, implementation, development, maintenance and hosting. Please contact Ian : Tel : 07981 057697 Email : i.nicoll@divinefrog.co.uk www.divinefrog.co.uk

ITEMS FOR SALE

SITUATIONS VACANT RESIDENTIAL CHEF WANTED! For vegetarian holistic Centre in Co. Wicklow, Ireland from mid-Sept. Tel. 353 45 404713 www.chrysalis.ie PART-TIME VEGAN CARER REQUIRED for elderly lady in Clayhall, Essex. Duties will include shopping, companionship and occasional outings. References required.

COSMETICS

be accepted from catering establishments that are not run on exclusively vegan lines, provided that vegan meals are available and that the wording of such ads reflects this.


40

PRIZE CROSSWORD Kate Sweeney

ACROSS

DOWN

5

Citrus fruits (7)

1

Containers for cooking (9)

7

Chocolate substitute (5)

2

Consumed, secondhand (4)

9

Trace element (4)

3

10

Birds from which downy feathers are taken for stuffing pillows (5,5)

Burned (food), parched, withered (plant) (8)

4

Kind of breakfast (3-2)

5

Yellow-green oily fruit (5)

11

Portions of food (8)

6

See 22

13

Forest; fibrous lignified substance under the bark of trees (4)

8

Chinese white cabbage (34)

12

15

Suffered, was afflicted by disease (5)

Tossed and dressed greens (5)

13

16

These may be black-eyed, pigeon or garden (4)

Healthy, unprocessed meals (9)

14

Dish out (5,2)

17

Grows (8)

15

21

Rosemary and Basil’s place? (4,6)

Type of soup containing pasta letters (8)

18

Climbing plants which produce grapes (5)

19

Bean or lentil, perhaps (5)

20

Excessively fat (5)

23

Cram; satisfy (4)

24

Tasty spread; adhesive (5)

25

Nut _ _ _ _ _ _ _, fried food (7)

22/6 Colour of spinach, for example (4,5) Send in a photocopy (or original) of the solution to this crossword, together with your name and address by the 22nd September 2005 Prize this issue: Yaoh Products Solution in next issue.

44

The Vegan l Autumn 2005

Solution to The Vegan Prize Crossword

39 CONGRATULATIONS to the winner Donna Norton of Glastonbury, Somerset, who wins a copy of Truth or Dairy on DVD



The Vegan Autumn 2005