life Published by Viva! the vegan campaigning group
Thetor c a F VBe a veggie pnoepw eat r g – r sta ition t e p m co
Issue 55 Spring 2014
New report mangles milk
Interview with Jeremy Cunningham
Veganuary grabs the headlines
Fiddling while brains burn
The truth about prawn farming
Viva!’s extraordinary media blitz Everyone can change their diet with Viva!’s 30-Day Vegan
Make a difference with your energy bills % 100 n e Gre icity ctr Ele
One simpl e tariff
Awesome customer service
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We’ll donate up to £70 to Viva! and you’ll get a £10 Viva! shop voucher when you join Ecotricity* We’re an energy company unlike any other – we take the money our customers spend on their electricity and gas bills and use it to build more green renewable energy. People:Power is at the heart of what we do – the more people who join us, the closer we’ll come to generating 100% of our own energy, helping us to create an energy and price independent future. It’s so easy to switch – it [HRLZSLZZ[OHUÄ]LTPU\[LZ
Call us free on 08000 302 302 (quoting VIVA) or visit www.ecotricity.co.uk/viva Terms and conditions 1. The offer is open to UK residents in the UK excluding N.Ireland, aged 18 or over. It’s not available to agents, distributors or any other person connected with the offer. 2. *The offer of the £70 donation is conditional on you switching you dual fuel electricity and gas supply to Ecotricity on or before 31/05/14 having quoted the reference code printed above, £45 if you switch just your electricity supply or £25 if you switch you gas supply. 3. £10 voucher for switching your electricity supply and the supply going live. For full terms and conditions, please go to www.ecotricity.co.uk/viva. You can see our latest fuel mix at www.ecotricity.co.uk/our-fuel-mix. We hope you’ll never need to, but if you’d like to make a complaint or would like to see our complaints procedure, please visit www.ecotricity.co.uk/complaints or call us on 0845 555 7 100. *OLHWLY[OHU[OLZ[HUKHYKNHZ[HYPMMVM)YP[PZO.HZHUK[OLPUYLNPVUZ[HUKHYKLSLJ[YPJP[`[HYPMMVM[OL)PN-P]LMVY[OLH]LYHNLJ\Z[VTLY
WHO WE ARE Viva!’s fight is a fight for life – for animals and ourselves. Through effective campaigning, we take the brutal reality of intensive farming to the people who can effect the most change: consumers. Our wideranging campaigns promote veganism as the best way to save animals from suffering, protect the environment, improve health and help those in developing countries. We have cleared the shelves of socalled ‘exotic meats’; our campaign against the factory farming of pigs, turkeys and ducks saw deaths dive; we are closer to a foie-gras free Britain and meat consumption is down in the UK thanks to Viva! and our loyal supporters. Viva! is a registered charity (1037486).
On the level Interview with Jeremy Cunningham of the Levellers
White lies Launch of our new anti-dairy campaign
Pink Gold The disastrous passion for prawns Viva!Health is a section of Viva! that promotes the health benefits of a vegan diet. The diseases that kill many of us prematurely can mostly be prevented by consuming a plant-based diet – Viva!Health explains why. We provide accurate information about healthy eating to the public, health professionals, schools and food manufacturers. We campaign on important issues including children’s health, the harmful effects of dairy foods, heart health, how to help combat obesity, diabetes and breast cancer and the dangers of eating fish and white meat.
How to get this magazine Join Viva! to get your copy of Viva!life magazine three times a year for only £15 (£12 unwaged). You’ll also receive a supporters’ card – giving you discounts at hundreds of shops and on services and holidays – plus a free car sticker. Call 0117 944 1000 (Mon-Fri, 9am-6pm) or join online at www.viva.org.uk/join.
Campaign news Kangaroo update
5 Lifelines News roundup from Viva!
21 Medialife Viva! very much in the news
11 Party, Party, Party Book your tickets for our 20th anniversary celebration
24 None So Blind Tony Wardle lifts the lid on Alzheimer’s
14 Veganuary Great successes of a vegan month
28 Lifestyle Latest goods and goodies
15 30-Day Vegan campaign Everyone’s doing it so sign up now
33 30-Day Cookery Recipes for a new lifestyle
16 Life Science Latest in veggie research
42 Viva! Merchandise Some of the latest to bring a smile to your face
18 Campaign News Updates on foie-gras, kangaroos and wild boar
The V Factor Search for a veggie pop star
VIVA!LIFE MAGAZINE Viva! Founder & International Director Juliet Gellatley
IT IS VIVA!’S 20th anniversary year! You may be one of our Founder Supporters or new to Viva! but it’s thanks to you that we are able to campaign. Viva! has had a huge impact and countless numbers of people have contacted us over the years saying it was our actions that persuaded them to change their diet. It has saved innumerable animals lives. We have reached millions of people through our high profile campaigns – ending kangaroo and ostrich meat sales in supermarkets, persuading Amazon and other outlets to dump foie-gras, causing a massive slump in horse meat exports in Eastern Europe. Only two per cent of the nation claims to have increased its meat consumption in the last year while a quarter cut back. One in six 18 to 24 year olds say they are vegetarian. The top reason driving this is animal welfare. A massive three billion fewer meaty meals were eaten in Britain in 2011 than in 2005 – and five million Brits avoid dairy. The wave is rising. I was delighted to help launch Veganuary at the start of this year (see page 14). This successful campaign has been followed up by Viva!’s 30 day Vegan – those who sign up receive a daily email bulletin of fabulous recipes. There are fun cookery videos showing that anyone can cook vegan. See 10 year olds, Jazz and Finn, being kitchen creative (why aren’t they more like that at home?!) and the rather more mature doing some nifty chopping! I admit one of the demos is by me – the only cookery demo I will ever do! Sign up at www.viva.org.uk/30dayvegan. Viva! has worked non-stop to expose factory farming in the UK and one of the toughest campaigns was filming farms that supply Cadbury with milk. Beautiful dairy cows, their bodies racked in pain as they give birth after a nine month pregnancy, having their babies torn from them. It is tragic and cruel but as I’ve said, dairy sales are falling. At the end of March, we are launching two major pieces of work: The Dark Side of Dairy reveals how cows and calves are farmed; and White Lies is a 238-page, fully-referenced insight into how dairy destroys our health (page 8). See our new web site www.whitelies.org.uk and help us spread the word in our 20th year. Finally, I hope to see you at our very special 20th anniversary celebration dinner. The venue is fantastic – the Erasmus, a spacious and beautiful riverboat, offering stunning views of the Thames (page 11). Thanks so much for being a part of Viva!. Yours for the animals
Editor Tony Wardle Campaigns & Deputy Director Justin Kerswell Office Manager Laura Turner Viva!Health Campaigner Veronika Powell Merchandise & Sales Manager Katrina Gazley Food & Cookery Coordinator Jane Easton Design The Ethical Graphic Design Company Ltd Editorial enquiries 0117 970 4633 Advertising enquiries 0117 944 1000 Membership enquiries 0117 944 1000 email@example.com Online www.viva.org.uk www.vivahealth.org.uk Viva!, 8 York Court, Wilder Street, Bristol BS2 8QH
Juliet Gellatley Founder & Director Juliet@viva.org.uk www.facebook.com/ julietwgellatley
General enquires Contact Viva! on 0117 944 1000 (Mon-Fri 9-6). Email firstname.lastname@example.org Write to Viva! at 8 York Court, Wilder Street, Bristol BS2 8QH
lifelines Down with meat Meat Trades Journal reported in December that the latest Government figures show a ‘notable fall’ in fresh meat sales – down by a whopping 7.7 per cent since 2009. This continues a trend that started more than decade ago. A YouGov survey in November confirmed this growing rejection of animal products. It found that a quarter of British people are eating less meat than they did a year ago – and the main reason is animal welfare. A further one-in-three people said they were willing to consider eating less meat in the future. The fastest to change are young people, with 17 per cent claiming not to eat meat at all. These are staggering results which show that the messages we pump out continually are succeeding. It perhaps also explains why Veganuary was so successful (see p 14) and why our just-launched 30 Day Vegan n Once more to VEGETARIAN (see p 15) is SHOES of Brighton for £702 already looking a from the sale of their trail boot. hit. We’re getting there, folks!
OUR SINCERE THANKS
Invincible Dale becomes patron We’ve written about him in the past and displayed our banners at his Forest Green Rovers football ground in Stroud. We are now proud to report that Dale Vince, the boss of green energy company Ecotricity, has become a patron of Viva!. Making the announcement, Dale said: “I’ve always been a big fan of the work Viva! does and I was honoured when asked to become a patron. “Factory farming is brutal; it’s an inexcusable, truly abhorrent abuse of animals. Worse still, it’s unnecessary. Meat eating is bad for people and the planet – not just the animals we subject to this inhuman abuse. That’s why I support Viva! and am proud to be a patron.” You can have green energy in your home simply by signing up Ecotricity as your supplier of gas and electricity – and earn Viva! up to £75 for doing so (see page 2). Go to www.ecotricity.co.uk/viva or ring 08000 302 302 and quote Viva! (Which? top energy company for satisfaction).
Beauty and the Beast n We are delighted to say that the auctioned badger painting donated by HEATHER NELSON was bought by NIGEL TOLLEY for £350. Thank you Nigel and Heather (www.viva.org.uk/ artforanimals).
n THE VEGAN CAKERY have donated £110 to Viva! for being their charity of the month in January. www.vegancakery.com
There have never been so many celebrities shouting loudly about their decision to become vegan. Rosanna Davison (28), Irish model and Miss World 2013, is one of them. Vegetarian for 10 years, she became vegan as a result of her studies in nutrition and biochemistry: “The benefits to my health and well-being have been extraordinary,” she says, “and I continue to be amazed by the results.” Coming from the other end of the spectrum is ‘hardman’ hip hop artist, IFEEL. His music explores the relationship between animals and humans and yet it all started with children. “I witnessed the severity of emotional pain and suffering of abused children when I was working with them. Abused animals are much like abused children – they hurt, they suffer, they cry. They show their teeth when they are forced into a corner and pushed beyond their limits. They deserve freedom, dignity and love as much as anyone else on this planet!” Phew, I wish I liked hip hop. www.viva.org.uk 5
lifelines n LIVE IN WEST SUSSEX? Then contact UckfieldVeggies@hotmail.com where like-minded people meet once a month for a meal and a drink. Or ring 07751 990082. n BOTSWANA has officially banned hunting wild animals for sport as from this January. Hunting zones will be turned into photo areas and safaris will continue, but sustainably. n WITH THE AID OF VIVA! LEAFLETS, Linda Town has persuaded the Alderley Edge Hotel, Cheshire, to take foiegras off the menu – even for their Christmas gala. Well done Linda! And following a lead from Myra Champeney, we contacted a restaurant in Clevedon. Result? Foie-gras’ off love. n ANDREA FROM CYPRUS placed a Viva! leaflet inside Harrods’ foie-gras fridge at Gatwick airport and watched while she waited for her plane. Of the six people who opened the fridge for foie-gras, not one bought it! Very clever Andrea. n FIONA MUNRO, a campaigner working with Viva!, has gathered a 100,000 signature petition against foie-gras! n THE 34TH VEGAN CAMP will take place near Southport, Lancs, from August 2-16. This very friendly annual event is suitable for everyone and anyone (www.vegancamp.co.uk). n DESPITE A PLETHORA OF CALLS from informed organisations, a parliamentary select committee tried to exclude zebras, camels, foxes and many other animals from a wild animal circus ban. They failed! Well done CAPS (www.captiveanimals.org).
Golden Girl and Music Man Conductor of the Munich Philharmonic, 83-year-old maestro LORIN MAAZEL, has announced on his website that he has gone vegetarian. He has urged his 250,000 blog followers to do the same. He says: “If only 100 people were to pick up on my challenge, With a some 6,000 kilos of meat and string of victories 1,000 kilos of fish less per behind her, six world titles year would be and a gold and silver in the consumed.” 2012 Olympic cyclist, VICTORIA PENDLETON OBE, has taken up running, intends to become a personal trainer and has got married (is now called Gardner). Oh, and she’s become vegetarian!
None so blind…
Our good friends at Hillside Animal Sanctuary filmed shocking scenes of neglect and suffering at a pig farm in Congleton. It was so bad that they reported it to the RSPCA, who have the legal status to prosecute such cases. An RSPCA chief inspector described conditions as ‘totally unacceptable.’ The only problem was – it was a ‘higher welfare,’ RSPCA Freedom Food accredited farm. Hillside say that the RSPCA initially took no action but when an exposé was run in the Sunday Mirror and it became public, they promised to prosecute. However, they failed to obtain any evidence of their own and five months later dropped the case, saying that their vet would not support a prosecution. RSPCA general secretary Gavin Grant has bravely taken on the fox-hunters and has stood up for badgers, despite right-wing dailies trying their best to hang him out to dry. At the same time, his organisation encourages factory farming with meaningless ‘welfare guarantees,’ which Viva! and others have exposed over and over again. Until the RSPCA sheds its Freedom Food subsidiary, it cannot call itself an animal welfare organisation. Go for it, Gavin!
Bravo Banksy Disbelieving passers-by watched as a slaughterhouse truck filled with adorable stuffed animals made its way through the meat-packing district of Brooklyn, NY. “It was so loud,” one of them said. “Not sure, but I think someone was in the truck banging as if the animals were trying to escape.” Others reported that with animatronics, some of the animals moved their heads and cried out. It was, of course, the inspiration of British street artist and satirist, Banksy. Called The Sirens of the Lambs, it was the 11th work in a month-long series in New York City. What a brilliant commentary on society’s hypocrisy. Brilliant, simply brilliant!
Photo © Featureflash / Shutterstock.com
NEWS IN BRIEF
Willy Wonker I think there must be a gene for hypocrisy. Trigger-happy Prince Philip became president of the World Wildlife Fund and now grandson, Prince William, has admirably come out against the poaching of elephants, rhinos and tigers with the launch of the United for Wildlife charity. Hooray for that. Sad to say, his concerns might have had greater impact if he hadn’t, just days before, blasted into oblivion stags and wild boar on the Spanish estate of Britain’s third richest man – the Duke of Westminster. For the future heir to the throne this is clearly an issue of supply and demand and not morality. Despicable as their actions are, poachers who do the actual killing are usually seeking relief from grinding poverty. What’s your excuse, Billy Boy?
It’s all Greek… A couple of Greek guys made contact with Viva!, expressing a passion for animal rights and saying they wanted to fly the flag for Viva! in their upcoming races. These boys are considered ultrarunners, where a normal marathon is not quite enough! John and Panagiotis have signed up for a series of races, including a monster 62km mountain event. Even the earthquakes that hit their island of Kefalonia recently failed to interrupt their impressive training regime. Please sponsor their mega effort at www.viva.org.uk/newfish-greek-runners.
China beats US Fair will be held in Xiamen (formerly Amoy), October 15-19, at the vast Conference & Exhibition Centre. The population of Xiamen is two million (Birmingham – one million) yet has an astounding 311 wholly vegetarian or vegan restaurants and cafes. The Xiamen veggie fair is being combined with the Buddha and tea fairs so if you do happen to go you will feel ‘the profound Zen charm and tea culture while enjoying delicious and exquisite vegetarian food.’
Woody’s words Trying to make it as a young actor in New York, Woody Harrelson says he was sitting on a bus, blowing his nose, his faced covered in acne, when a girl said: “Hey, you’re lactose intolerant! Quit dairy and those symptoms will be gone in three days.” “I was like, no way,” he says but tried it all the same. “Three days later – gone! So I started thinking to myself, Jeez, I’ve always been told nothing but milk does a body good. It’s a fundamental thing. So from there it was like, ‘what else are they lying about?’ There are all these things we’re brought up to believe that are just a total hoax.” www.viva.org.uk 7
Photo © Featureflash / Shutterstock.com
Horror stories galore emanate from China about the animals people eat and their treatment. I’m happy to report that it’s not all like that. As prosperity has grown so the number of vegetarians has exploded as they see the appalling treatment that animals endure and the impact they are having on the environment. There is now an estimated 50 million vegetarians in China – and increasing rapidly. This compares with 7.3 million in the US and a further 22 million who follow a ‘vegetarianinclined’ diet. But China is beginning to go for it and the Sixth International Vegetarian Food
ca mpa ign s
WhiteLies Viva!’s anti-dairy Super-campaign! This Mother’s Day, March 30, Viva! and Viva!Health are launching a brand new campaign called White Lies. It combines and updates all our work on the dairy industry and offers many important new resources By Veronika Powell, Viva! campaigner hite Lies brings together ALL the issues surrounding the dairy industry: animal welfare combined with the latest science on the many links between dairy consumption and human diseases. And to make life easier for the many who are deciding to go dairy-free, this campaign also offers an abundance of practical help – shopping lists, recipes and tasty substitutions for dairy products.
a compelling story and the science so convincing that the dairy industry’s welter of advertising claims simply fall apart.
White Lies In the past, we have produced numerous reports, guides and feature articles reporting on and documenting the many links between the consumption of dairy products and human illnesses such as cancer, diabetes, asthma, osteoporosis, heart disease and inflammatory bowel disease. Ever-more scientific data are being published confirming these links and ever-more people are going dairy-free so the time is right to update our popular White Lies report. It is
The Dark Side of Dairy Also, over the years, we have conducted numerous undercover investigations into the reality of British dairy farming and the results have been consistently depressing. We filmed 15 zero grazing farms supplying the confectionary giant Cadbury and documented excruciating birth complications, the appalling stress of mother and calf being forcibly separated after birth and the desperate calling of one to the other. We saw cows with distended udders producing 39 litres of milk a day, who never go out to pasture and repeatedly suffer from painful and debilitating illnesses such as the udder infection mastitis, lameness and milk fever. We also filmed the shocking fate of Cadbury’s male calves. Useless to the dairy industry, many of these confused little ‘by-
products’ are simply disposed of. We filmed a baby male calf being callously shot in the head before being hauled away by the hunt, with a trailer load of other dairy corpses, to become food for their dogs. Those who aren’t shot fare little better, being sold into the cruel veal industry or slaughtered for pet food. Biosecurity is essential to stop the spread of TB and we showed how non-existent it is – certainly at the cattle markets where we filmed. Antiseptic footbaths were barely used and at one market were not even present until we raised the issue. We exposed modern dairy goat farming and shattered the image of small-scale, artisan businesses. Our investigation showed huge, intensive farms where the goats never go outside and have their kids taken from them after birth in the same manner as dairy cows. Our exposé of this industry was a first and these practices, along with our filming of the horrific mutilations inflicted on young kids, shocked many people.
Brand new White Lies resources HANDY A5 GUIDES! Everyone’s Going Dairy-Free – full of practical advice, product lists and recipes.
Why You Don’t Need Dairy – all you should know about dairy farming and the impact of dairy on our health. REPORTS – ALL THE LATEST The Dark Side of Dairy – lifting the lid on modern dairy farming, shattering its benign image and exposing mental The Dark Side of Dairy and physical suffering inflicted on millions of cows and their calves every year. This report is an informative and authoritative overview of Britain’s dairy industry. A Viva! Report
Updated by: Veronika Powell, MSc Zoology and Animal Behaviour Editor: Juliet Gellatley, BSc Zoology, DipCNM Nutrition
Everyone’s Going Dairy-Free Consumers are becoming more informed about their health, animal welfare and how their food is produced and as a result, dairyfree living is at an all-time high. We are introducing two brand new, superbly-detailed guides to help you with the transition. Everyone’s Going Dairy-Free is bursting with practical information and advice whilst Why You Don’t Need Dairy is all about the health and animal welfare reasons for living a dairy-free life, empowering you to be confident about your decisions. It draws its authority from the 238-page, White Lies report. To make the switch even easier, we’re offering a special Everyone’s Going DairyFree Pack for £5 – for details please see the right-hand column. We’ve also overhauled the former MilkMyths website and turned it into WhiteLies.org.uk, full of useful resources and new materials! Check it out! Throughout the year, we’ll be adding more
Take action Order your White Lies action pack online at www.whitelies.org.uk/order, or by calling 0117 944 1000 or email Liam – email@example.com
resources, including graphics, audio files and social media gear. Whether you gave up dairy a long time ago or have only just decided to do so, sign our online Dairy-Free for (at least) a Month pledge and help us get the count to 1,000 by the end of 2014! If you don’t have internet access, let us know by post and address your letter to: Viva! Dairy-Free Pledge, 8 York Court, Wilder Street, Bristol BS2 8QH. Britain’s Hardest Working Mothers We’re launching the campaign on Mother’s Day because dairy cows truly are the hardest-working mothers. Every year they produce so much milk it could feed eight calves. At the same time, a calf is growing inside them. We are striving to break this cycle of suffering but we need your support. Help us spread the message by joining our door-dropping team! We’ll send you a pack of leaflets for distributing in your neighbourhood. It’s time to wean ourselves off cows’ milk! Make 2014 the start of your dairy-free life!
White Lies (online only) – latest research on dairy and human health, explaining the links with cancer, heart disease, diabetes and many other conditions. It shows how growth hormones in dairy affect our health and challenges the idea that children need milk. FACT SHEETS! Boning up on Calcium – all you need to know about calcium and your diet.
Boning up on Calcium Why Plant Calcium is Best By Dr Justine Butler & Veronika Powell MSc Viva! Health Senior Health Campaigners
Most people in developed countries have been brought up to believe that our teeth and our bones can only grow healthily if we drink cows’ milk. Over the last three decades we have witnessed a barrage of marketing campaigns designed to reinforce the idea that only dairy milk can supply calcium in sufficient quantities to help us grow big and strong. But is it really good for you? An increasing amount of research challenges the outdated notion that cows’ milk is best and in fact shows that our consumption of dairy products is doing us much more harm than good. What is Calcium and Why Do We Need It? Calcium is a soft grey metallic element. It is the fifth most abundant element in the earth’s crust and occurs in compounds such as limestone, chalk and marble. Calcium is required for normal growth and development in animals. It is the most abundant mineral in the human body accounting for around two per cent of the total body weight. Calcium plays an important structural role in maintaining bone health and strength; in fact around 99 per cent of our calcium is deposited in the bones and teeth. The other one per cent is responsible for a range of important metabolic functions that regulate muscle contraction, heartbeat, blood clotting and functioning of the nervous system.
How Much Calcium Do We Need? There is no international consensus on what the healthiest or safest amount of calcium we need is. In the UK, the reference nutrient intake value (RNI) is used; this is similar to the Recommended Daily Amount (RDA) used previously. The RNI value for a nutrient is the amount of that nutrient that is sufficient for 97.5 per cent of the people in a given group. The UK government currently suggests that the RNI value for calcium in adults aged between 19 and 50 years of age is 700mg per day (National Diet and Nutrition Survey, 2004). In the US, the recommended daily intake is slightly higher at 1000mg per day (NIH Consensus Statement, 1994). However, in many countries such as India, China, Japan, Gambia and Peru the average daily intake of calcium can be as low as 300mg.
Where Do We Get It? The body obtains calcium in two ways: either from our diet or our bones. When the diet does not provide sufficient levels, calcium is ‘borrowed’ (reabsorbed) from the bones in order to restore blood levels and maintain calcium-dependent biological functions. Calcium in our bones is reabsorbed and replaced continuously as old bone cells break down and new ones form. If adequate calcium is then supplied in the diet, bone levels are restored, but if the diet fails to supply enough calcium or causes calcium leaching from the bones, bone loss persists.
fractures (Bischoff-Ferrari et al., 2007) suggests that neither total calcium intake nor calcium supplementation is significantly associated with decreased hip fracture risk in women or men. As for calcium supplementation, the authors suggested that it might indeed increase the risk. The latest study of this type brought very similar results (Warensjö et al., 2011). Over 60,000 women were followed for up to 19 years and when the data were analysed, it was found that calcium intake above 750mg didn’t offer any protection from fractures and high calcium intakes increased the risk of hip fractures. Harvard experts (Harvard School of Public Health, 2012) recently confirmed this when they highlighted that in countries such as India, Japan and Peru where average daily calcium intake is as low as 300 milligrams per day, the incidence of bone fractures is lower than in many western countries (including the UK). An increasing amount of evidence now suggests that cows’ milk is not the best source of calcium at all and goes further to suggest that our bone health would benefit enormously if we switched to plant-based sources. In addition, research suggests that physical exercise is the most critical factor for maintaining healthy bones, followed by improving the diet and lifestyle; this means eating plenty of fresh fruit and vegetables, cutting down on caffeine and avoiding alcohol and smoking. In 2004 the Government’s Food Standards Agency (FSA) looked at sources of calcium in the National Diet and Nutrition Survey and found that only 43 per cent of the mean intake of calcium in adults in the UK comes from milk and milk products. So despite the misconceived notion that milk is the best (or only) source of calcium the facts show that a large share of the calcium in our diets is derived from sources other than dairy foods. This is not surprising as most people in the world (around 70 per cent) obtain their calcium from plant-based sources rather than dairy products.
But Milk is a Natural Food… Isn’t It? Humans are mammals, and as with all mammals, we are designed to drink the milk of our mothers until we are weaned on to solid foods. We are the only mammals that continue to drink milk after weaning, and not just that, we are the only mammals to drink the milk of another species (apart from pets that we control). To state the obvious (but often overlooked fact) cows’ milk has evolved to help turn a small calf into a cow in less than a year. That’s why cows’ milk contains around four times as much calcium as human milk; 118mg per 100g compared to 34mg per 100g respectively (FSA, 2002). This discrepancy is for a good reason; calves need a huge amount of calcium to promote the massive level of skeletal growth required over the first year of life. A human infant does not require such high levels of calcium; indeed the high mineral content of cows’ milk puts a strain on the human infant kidney which is why most governments recommend children do not drink cows’ milk in their first year.
The Dark Side of Dairy fact sheet (online only) – a quick overview of dairy farming. Calcium and Bone Health
Charity number: 1037486
We have to keep our evidence and statistics up to date or the dairy industry will immediately claim that everything has changed. For that reason, The Dark Side of Dairy report provides accurate and up-todate information on British dairy farming – we have included all the latest facts and figures so what you see is a realistic picture of how the industry works and how British dairy cows live in 2014.
The idea that cows’ milk is the best source of calcium is deeply entrenched in the British psyche and is sustained by the government-sponsored dairy industry and the Milk Development Council who work with schools, dairies and LEAs to encourage more children to drink milk at school. However, a review of 37 studies on dairy products and bone health published in the official journal of the American Academy of Pediatrics challenged this misleading notion by concluding that there is no solid evidence that the consumption of dairy products improves bone health in children and young adults (Lanou et al., 2005). Another review of 15 studies on calcium intake and the risk of hip
Lactose Intolerance Many people are unable to consume cows’ milk and milk products
Viva! Health, 8 York Court, Wilder Street, Bristol BS2 8QH. Tel: 0117 944 1000. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Web: www.viva.org.uk/health
White Lies fact sheet (online only) – the most important health issues linked to dairy consumption. Everyone’s Going Dairy-Free Pack – for just £5, you’ll get our two new guides (Everyone’s Going Dairy-Free and Why You Don’t Need Dairy), calcium fact sheet and a selection of leaflets. Order online www.whitelies.org.uk/materials or call our office 0117 944 1000. www.viva.org.uk 9
BOOK NOW! er A Viva! anniversary dinn
Tickets cost £90 and are first come, first served. Book online www.viva.org.uk/dinner or from Viva!, 8 York Court, Wilder St, Bristol BS2 8QH (with names of all attending, email, address and a cheque payable to Viva!). Or by phone on 0117 944 1000 (Mon-Fri, 9-5).
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nue: the Er asmus on th e
Anniversary dinner on the Thames with Patron Jenny Seagrove Saturday, 20 September 2014, 6.15pm to 11pm WHEN I FOUNDED Viva! back in 1994, I cruises past many of the most iconic promised we would campaign non-stop to landmarks in London. We embark and save animals’ lives – to the best of our disembark at Westminster Pier. ability and in the most effective way We have a special evening planned, starting possible. I hope you feel we’ve been true to at 6.15pm with champagne and a talk by me. our word. You will be served a “We enjoyed Viva!’s With your support, three course vegan Viva! has helped fundraising dinner in Bath, menu of top gourmet countless people to go quality. There will be an spending time with good vegetarian and vegan, company of like mind. We auction, a raffle and thus saving thousands after-dinner speakers, have attended Viva!’s last upon thousands of including the wonderful six dinners and have animals’ lives. We’ve actress, Jenny Seagrove enjoyed every one – so influenced the thinking and the lovely Wendy much so that we are of millions through our Turner Webster – more high profile campaigns booking now for their 20th will be announced later. – ending kangaroo meat Winners of our anniversary!” special Viva! awards sales in supermarkets, persuading Amazon and Margaret and Alan Mann will also be announced. Funds raised will go to hundreds of other our campaigns to end factory farming and outlets to dump foie-gras, causing a massive animal slaughter. slump in horse exports in Eastern Europe – This really is an and many others. evening to remember and I hope you will be able to join me, Viva! we look forward to staff and other supporters at our 20th sharing it with anniversary celebration dinner. The venue is you. fantastic – a spacious riverboat called the Erasmus that boasts beautiful interiors and offers stunning views of the Thames as it
Menu STARTERS n Spiced chickpea soup with rosemary oil, grilled sourdough and black olive tapenade OR n White bean and Jerusalem artichoke veloute, roast garlic oil and porcini dust MAINS n Globe artichokes poached in herb stock with a barigoule galette cake, squash purée and braised green lentils; served with braised red cabbage and thyme roasted root vegetables OR n Potato, spinach and roast garlic wellington with port braised shallot and field mushroom duxelle; served with braised red cabbage and thyme roasted root vegetables DESSERTS n Blueberry tart with ginger snap wafer OR n Chocolate and frangelico mousse with candied hazelnut and butterscotch n Red or dry white wine included n Tea or coffee n Cash bar also available www.viva.org.uk 11
A life less
Jeremy Cunningham, vegetarian, bassist and founding member of the ever-popular folk-punk band, The Levellers, talks to Juliet Gellatley he Levellers music is hard to define – it rocks, it rolls, it has lyrics, it has meaning, it’s rootsie stuff interlaced with fiddle folk all held together with twofingered punk. It’s unique and very listenable to. No wonder they’ve got a huge following of fans, some whose loyalty dates back over 25 years, plus a whole new fan base of young people who energetically appreciate their live performances. The band’s longevity is a tribute to the oodles of unswervingly strong songs they produce, an impressive stage presence and their friendship. As bassist Jeremy Cunningham puts it: “We’re old enough to know we need each other; are better together than apart. And we’re all driven – we still think we haven’t written our best song yet. I still want to do our best song.” This from a band who have produced over 30 albums, including 10 studio, live
and rereleases. Their first, A Weapon Called the Word, went gold; their second, Levellers, reached number two in the album charts, quickly followed by the number one gold-selling album, Zeitgeist. If you’ve seen The Levellers play live, you will have spotted Jeremy. He’s hard to miss, jumping around, whipping his red dreadlocks back and forth whilst twanging, plucking and strumming his beloved Gibson Thunderbird. I first met Jeremy 12 years ago when Viva!’s base was Brighton, which is also the home of the band. He struck me as being an unpretentious, intelligent, kind guy who defies all pop star stereotyping. He doesn’t trash hotel rooms, shout rude words into the camera lens or throw up at celeb junkets. In fact, he was so level headed that he gave Mr Spock a run for his money. And nothing has changed. Like Spock, he’s straight to the point – a spade’s
a spade kind of thing. But unlike Spock, he laughs a lot, has a huge sense of fun and is instantly likeable. You somehow expect him to be full of hope for the future. Not a bit! “The whole world now runs on the consumerist system and, realistically, I can’t see a way of changing it because everybody’s locked into it. It would have to be one great big ****ing revolution. I can’t see it happening because people are too apathetic. “My opinions are more pessimistic than the band’s – you have to have some faith in humankind for our music to have meaning! We’re not all about politics, which is why we’re labelled anarchists. We believe it’s just about doing the right thing – being aware and taking responsibility for your own actions and if you don’t like something, you change it, or try to.”
“I think there will be a major calamity, that’s the gritty reality, but it’s up to us now to change that course”
Not surprisingly, half the band, including Jeremy of course, are vegetarian. He says: “being vegetarian is a big step you can take to help animals. I first became aware of factory farming when I was about nine and just didn’t want the obscenity of it on my conscience. I used to walk past a smallholding with free chickens on the way home from school and I liked watching them strut around. Then I found out how battery hens were caged. I was upset, angry. I still get angry about the cruelty. “I think it’s absolutely essential that people wake up to the harm done by eating meat and make some changes because it’s not difficult. People think that there are great sacrifices involved and there’s not, it’s so easy. They have got to take control of their own destiny because, sooner or later, they really are gonna have to!” Why, I ask? “Because if we continue the way we are, the world will implode and we will end up extinguishing ourselves.” Is that inevitable? “I think there will be a major calamity, that’s the gritty reality, but it’s up to us now to
change that course.” Can being in a band help change the world? “The Levellers is only a pop group but in our own small way we’ve made people aware of these issues – we’re pretty well informed. There are a lot of nice people out there but they feel disempowered and switch off. They feel they can’t do anything because the problems seem so big and out of their control; we say we’ve all got to do something, it’s the only way. “We wrote a song called I Have No Answer… I have no answers for The problems caused by government and law The only solution is to rearrange from the bottom to the top This system must change I tell you it’s dis-disinformation That keeps us ‘ll in our station You tell me that I’m confused I tell you that we’re all used
CONTINUED ON P31 www.viva.org.uk 13
Veganuary A wow of a hit AMAZING MEDIA COVERAGE, 3,325 people taking the January vegan challenge and millions of others reading positive things about veganism for the first time ever. Result! Veganuary founder, Matthew Glover, working with Viva!, was excited by the success, saying: “We’ve been overwhelmed by the positive response and media coverage. Veganism has entered the mainstream!” Veganuary made headlines in the Guardian, Independent, Daily Mail, Times, BBC online and MSN (see page 21). Why did they do it? Participants were asked why they were taking the Veganuary challenge and said: n animal cruelty – 78 per cent n health reasons – 42 per cent n environment – 25 per cent n to try new foods – 14 per cent Who did it? Women, predominantly. Ninety per cent were female with most in the 18 to 30 age range but over 55s weren’t far behind. Next year, the focus will be on the ‘meat is macho’ stereotype. So, men, get yourselves ready for the vegan challenge. Encouragingly, almost 40 per cent of participants were omnivores and 10 per cent fish eaters. Those who were vegan before the challenge said they were doing it to support others and try new recipes. Social Media The Facebook support group was widely popular. Emma Spradbury said: “I really enjoyed the Veganuary site and support from followers. I’m now much better able to counter negative comments about veganism.” Its huge popularity will ensure the site stays open all year www.facebook.com/groups/ veganuary. Go on, join today – it’s packed with great advice on nutrition, recipes, shopping and all things vegan!
The results are in! And what results! Our survey says that 95 per cent maintained a vegan diet for the entire month (with just the occasional slip). Just as encouraging, half of those people intend to stay vegan! One of them is Rachel Woods: “My husband and I set out on this adventure to see whether omitting dairy and eggs from our diets would help his asthma. His symptoms have improved vastly. We’ve a greater appreciation of the variety of vegan foods available and realised we can survive without dairy or eggs! As a vegetarian, it has opened my eyes to the suffering of the animals that supply my milk, cheese and eggs. That’s why I’m staying vegan.”
SOUTH AFRICA 2.5% BELGIUM 1.7% NEW ZEALAND 1.5% IRELAND 1.5% ICELAND 1.1%
REST OF WORLD 8.5%
More to Come “The 2015 campaign is going to be huge,” says Matthew. “The target is 100,000 participants with a global campaign. We will improve the website with a vegan product directory, more recipes, eating out guides and nutrition information.” FEMALE 90%
The Stars Come Out Special appreciation goes to everyone at Viva! for their fantastic support – Jane Easton for providing recipes and Juliet Gellatley, who supplied information for the site, gave media interviews and talked at length to journalists who tried going vegan. Juliet says: “Veganuary is all positive. It helps people to save animals, the planet and to discover a new world of food! Veganuary is also about reducing heart attacks, strokes, some cancers, diabetes and obesity. It’s the way forward for animals, people, the world!” Juliet helped Laura Burnip (Hertfordshire Mercury), who was a ‘raving carnivore’: “I can’t believe it”, she said, “I think I’ve accidentally become vegan! Eating mostly fruit and vegetables has changed my taste in food, I’ve shifted a few pounds and feel lighter and healthier… I’m glad I did it!” This year’s success could not have been achieved without Karin Ridgers (Veggie Vision) and Damien and James (Social Chic Agency). Thanks also to the creative geniuses at the design agency, Motionlab.
“Veganuary is all positive. It helps people to save animals, the planet and to discover a new world of food!” Juliet Gellatley
o n e m o C do the… We couldn’t rest with the hugely successful Veganuary campaign so here’s the brand new 30 Day Vegan. With no date limits, this new Viva! campaign offers non-stop support to anyone who wants to try changing their diet. It’s free and all you have to do is sign up. A daily email bulletin will bring you a whole heap of things to make life easy. You will get recipes, devised by Viva!’s Jane Easton, for: n breakfast n lunch n and TWO delicious dinner options • one cooked from scratch • one based on supermarket convenience foods n a nutritional tip n a celebrity quote to inspire you n a weekly shopping list – based on ingredients that might be new to you n a link to Viva!’s FREE L-Plate Vegan guide, with dozens of ready-made food ideas
n a link to Viva!’s FREE Vegan Recipe Club, with hundreds of tested recipes n email hotline to our food and health team n cookery demos showing how easy it is to cook vegan. With a humorous voiceover, Viva! people of all ages produce their favourite recipes – 10-year-olds Jazz and Finn, Ash, Rhiannon, Jane, Tony and Juliet (her first and last filmed cookery demo!!) n also, a dollop or two of inspiration!
“Going vegan will save animals and improve your health, sex drive and energy,” says Juliet Gellatley, Viva!’s founder and director. “So, we’re saying to everyone, if you love food, why not give it a go? Our Viva! 30 Day Vegan team will hold your hand by offering support, hints and tips – and it’s all FREE!’” Interest in veganism is rocketing and the latest convert is America’s highest-earning actor, the multi-award winning Samuel L Jackson. There’s now no argument that a vegan diet is kinder to animals, healthier and vital in saving the planet – and the very best place to start is by signing up to Viva!’s 30 Day Vegan.
“Going vegan will save animals and improve your health, sex drive and energy” Juliet Gellatley
www.viva.org.uk/30dayvegan www.viva.org.uk 15
lifeSCIENCE breast cancer prostate cancer
ova cancreian r
One of Viva!Health’s tasks is to unravel scientific research and make it easy to understand. Here we update you on the latest... By Veronika Powell MSc, Viva!Health Campaigner
multiple testicular myeloma cancer thyroid cancer
Animal Products = Cancer A study of epic proportions analysed highquality data from 87 countries – almost a half of all the countries in the world – to examine the relationship between lifestyle and cancer. Results showed that the main contributory factor for 12 types of cancer was consuming animal products – meat, milk, fish and eggs. The types of cancer they were strongly linked with were breast, uterus, kidney, ovarian, pancreatic, prostate, testicular and thyroid cancer and multiple myeloma. The study also documented how the rise of animal consumption in some countries was followed by increased cancer rates. For example, colon cancer rose after 15–27 years and breast cancer after 20–31 years in Japan. Mortality rates for some cancers increased in several Southeast Asian countries 10 years after meat and dairy consumption rose. The author’s explanation is that consuming animal products causes increased production of insulin, insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF1) 16
and sex hormones in the body. Higher levels of these hormones are known to increase cancer risk for several organ systems. He also points out that iron in meat may be a risk factor for cancer through increased production of free radicals and DNA damage. Higher protein intake has been shown to stimulate reactions in the body that promote cancer. It was suggested that the only diet that could avoid this is a wholesome vegan diet excluding protein isolates (such as TVP or isolated soya protein). Grant, W.B., 2014. A Multicountry Ecological Study of Cancer Incidence Rates in 2008 with Respect to Various Risk-Modifying Factors. Nutrients. 6 (1): 163-189
Berries and wine, you’ll be fine Eating plenty of plant compounds called flavonoids can help prevent type 2 diabetes, according to new research published in The Journal of Nutrition. A study of almost 2,000 people found that high intake of these dietary compounds is associated with lower insulin resistance and better blood sugar regulation and also with lower inflammation (crucial for reducing damage by conditions such as obesity, cardiovascular disease and cancer). Four or more portions of flavonoidrich foods a day made a significant difference. The most effective type of flavonoids were anthocyanins, those plant compounds and pigments responsible for the dark purple, red and blue colours of many fruits and also act as powerful antioxidants in the human body. Good sources are: berries, cherries, blackcurrant, plums, aubergines, asparagus, bananas, red cabbage, red apples, pears, grapes, wine, pomegranate, kidney and black beans, red onions, beetroot and others. Jennings, A., et al., 2014. Intakes of Anthocyanins and Flavones Are Associated with Biomarkers of Insulin Resistance and Inflammation in Women. The Journal of Nutrition. 144 (2): 202-208
Red hot danger Scientists have discovered chemical compounds that are hundreds of times more deadly than their parent carcinogens. These compounds are produced by certain types of chemical reactions, such as those in grilled meat or car engine combustion. The parent compounds involved are polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH) formed naturally as the result of most types of combustion and it’s well known that many PAHs are carcinogenic. Yet these compounds become even more of a problem when they chemically interact with nitrogen (a basic element in protein) and become nitrated. The nitrated PAHs have 6 to 432 times higher potential to cause mutations, that can lead to cancer, than the parent compounds. Hightemperature cooking of
meat poses a much bigger health risk than previously thought. Jariyasopit, N. et al., 2014. Novel Nitro-PAH Formation from Heterogeneous Reactions of PAHs with NO2, NO3/N2O5, and OH Radicals: Prediction, Laboratory Studies, and Mutagenicity. Environmental Science and Technology. 48 (1): 412−419
Friendly foods We all know that fibre is good for us and we should eat plenty of fibrerich foods every day but a new study shows it’s even more beneficial than we thought! Six meat-eating obese people with type 2 diabetes and/or high blood pressure were assigned to a strict vegetarian, high-fibre, low-fat diet for one month. At the end of the month, the diet had not only achieved weight loss but just about every marker of previous bad health – cholesterol, fats and blood sugar – was improved. Two people’s results showed they could no longer be diagnosed as diabetics. The diet also positively altered the ratio VIVA!HEALTH of gut bacteria – it encouraged the ‘good’ conducted an in-depth bacteria and decreased the numbers of research on diet and ‘bad’ bacteria contributing to gut diabetes and produced inflammation. materials to help you understand and defeat Kim, M.S. et al., 2013. Strict vegetarian diet diabetes – go to improves the risk factors associated with www.viva.org.uk/ metabolic diseases by modulating gut microbiota diabetes to find and reducing intestinal inflammation. Environmental Microbiology Reports. 5(5): 765–775 out more
Quality not quantity A study of almost 72,000 people and their diets has brought very reassuring results. It examined the nutrient intake of people who belonged to one of these groups: nonvegetarian, semi-vegetarian, pesco vegetarian, lacto-ovo vegetarian and strict vegetarian (people who don’t eat meat, fish, eggs and dairy products at all or less than once per month). Average protein and vitamin B12 intake was similar in all groups. It’s interesting that strict vegetarians had a slightly higher intake of iron than meat-eaters and their calcium intake was at the recommended daily dose – these results uproot many myths about vegetarians and vegans. Compared to the other groups, strict vegetarians had a higher intake of fibre and vitamins and minerals found mostly in plant-based foods and their diet was lower in fat. They were also the only group within normal BMI range whilst all the other diet groups were in the overweight range. This is of particular interest given that total energy intakes were similar for all groups, because it demonstrates that what we eat is more important than how many calories we consume in a day. Rizzo, N.S., 2013. Nutrient Profiles of Vegetarian and Nonvegetarian Dietary Patterns. Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. 113(12): 1610-1619
ca mpa ign s
Minister ducks the issue By Justin Kerswell, Campaigns Manager he front cover and page after full page in the Daily Mirror was our response to a deaf Government that refuses to listen to our calls to ban foiegras. Despite being so cruel that its production is essentially banned in Britain, it can still be imported. There is no law against foie-gras here but any attempt to force feed ducks would bring a prosecution for animal cruelty. This is why Viva! has launched a campaign to persuade the Government to ban all imports. During the past 10 years, I have regularly written to ministers outlining this glaring contradiction. The response has always been the same, regardless of their political party: ‘Yes, of course we would like to ban it but terribly sorry, it would be impossible under world trade rules’. We don’t accept this as things have changed – it can be done and 2014 is the year to do it. The World Trade Organisation has already confirmed its support for a ban on importing seal products into the EU because of ethical concerns. So, morality can be a valid objection and foie-gras could and should be regarded similarly. There is also an important precedent – five EU member states had the guts to unilaterally ban cat and dog fur before it was officially banned across the entire EU. The seal ban could not be accused of protectionism as no products are made in Europe and the same applies to foie-gras – the UK doesn’t produce it so we can’t be accused of protectionism. Britain is not the only EU state where there is pressure to ban the importation of foie-gras. Activists in Holland and Scandinavia are also calling for it and it
was Viva! and French group L214’s joint exposé of horrific conditions on French foie-gras farms last year that spurred them on. Our footage lifted a lid on the obscenities of the force-feeding industry, sent shockwaves across Europe and led to activists securing important victories in their own countries. Danish animal group Anima used our footage to persuade mega chain Superbest, Europe’s biggest seller of foie-gras, to dump it entirely. More than 2,500 stores across the country have now prohibited its sale. And now our Norwegian friends from NOAH have told us the great news that supermarket chains in Norway are also taking it off the shelves for good! Things are also changing here in Britain. A tremendous victory came last year when we persuaded Amazon, the world’s largest online retailer, to delist dozens of foie-gras products from their British website. Even more recently, we persuaded Majestic Wines, another large UK online retailer, to stop promoting foie-gras on their website, again using our graphic evidence of the abject cruelty to which ducks are subjected. And almost every day, we receive news of restaurants taking it off their menus – usually because Viva! supporters have taken the time to contact them. Despite these victories, so long as it is legal to import foie-gras into Britain there will be people willing to sell it. That is why we want to stop it. If you haven’t already given your support to our ban on foie-gras you can do so now on our website www.viva.org.uk/banfoiegras. Or let us know by post.
Our footage lifted a lid on the obscenities of the force-feeding industry
Take action If you haven’t already given your support to our ban on foie-gras you can do so now on our website www.viva.org.uk/banfoiegras. Or let us know by post.
Cruel Britannia …winning hearts and minds
Dame Judi ‘Horrified’ by Lidl German store brings back ‘roo meat BRITISH STAGE AND screen icon, Dame Judi Dench, has backed Viva!’s long-running campaign to end the trade in kangaroo meat and was recently featured in The Sun newspaper. She was ‘horrified’ by graphic photos of baby joey kangaroos who had been pulled from their dying mother’s pouch and cruelly clubbed around the head or decapitated and then discarded into the dirt of the Outback. She was spurred to speak out after supermarket chain Lidl
once again put kangaroo meat back on the shelves in the run up to Christmas. Dame Judi told us: “I was horrified to learn that kangaroo meat is back on the menu in Britain. I continue to support Viva!’s campaign to ban its sale and stop the commercial hunts in Australia.” She added: “As a lover of animals and their welfare I am pleased to add my name to the many others across the world who are supporting this very worthwhile campaign. Cruelty to any animal is barbarism and killing a joey after killing the mother is totally unacceptable.” Kangaroos are not farmed but are shot in the wild and like all wild animals, their population can fluctuate dangerously. These gentle animals are battling one of the worst droughts on record as well as an insatiable industry, now encouraged by Lidl in the UK.
Take action Support the Australian groups fighting for the future of kangaroos and join us in telling Lidl not to restock their shelves. Go to: www.savethekangaroo.com, or write to their head office: Lidl UK GmbH, 19 Worple Road, Wimbledon, London SW19 4JS.
IF YOU HAVEN’T yet watched Cruel Britannia, Viva!’s short film on factory farming, it is easy to do so as it is only a click away. Featuring shocking undercover footage shot by Viva! investigators, it packs a very hard punch and blows out of the water once-andfor-all any concept that Britain’s farmed animal welfare is the best in the world. This ground-breaking exposé is already saving animals’ lives and has been watched by thousands on Youtube and DVD. Many of them have gone either vegetarian or vegan on the spot. Yes, it is that powerful. Please can you commit to showing Cruel Britannia to just one person you know – friend or family? This simple gesture by you could save even more animals – literally thousands of them. View Cruel Britannia online free at www.viva.org.uk/cruelbritannia. Or you can buy the DVD from Viva! for just £2 + 58p P&P (Payable to Viva!, address on page 4).
WHAT YOUTUBE VIEWERS THINK OF CRUEL BRITANNIA “After watching this vid I’m going vegetarian.” “Well done viva!. One small step, one giant leap for humankind.” “I’m spreading the word and have had a few converts already – well done Viva!” “OMG ... I live in London and thought that animal welfare is of a very high standard but that’s it, I’m seriously fed up with this bulls***t we are fed. I don’t wanna eat meat anymore and drink milk and eat dairy products from sick, tortured animals!!!”
ca mpa ign s Forest of Dean
The Boar War continues… No end to persecution for Forest’s secretive dwellers
distanced from nature some people have become! A few grumpy grumbles is one thing but the FC say they are under increasing pressure to slaughter ever-more of them – and conveniently receive £300 for each carcase! Last year they planned to kill 132 animals but failed to reach their target. Despite that shortfall, their intended quota for this year, when the closed season ends this spring, is 400 boars, with females and hoglets being specifically targeted. The FC claim there are as many as 800 boars in the forest – a claim we say is pure guesswork and could wipe out the entire boar population. Again, it seems, the official response to any perceived problem with wildlife is to reach for a gun. We are not convinced there is a serious problem but if there is, and the FC can prove it, then non-lethal methods should be employed – such as oral contraception and better fencing. TONY WARDLE
Take action Tell the Forestry Commission to give the boar a break and celebrate the return of these lovely creatures. Write to them via our website: www.viva.org.uk/whatwe-do/save-forest-dean-wild-boar. Or by post to Ian Harvey, Forestry Commission, Bank House, Coleford, Gloucestershire GL16 8BA.
he Forest of Dean is on my doorstep and I walk it from time to time in the hope of spotting wild boar. It is a rambling mixture of dense, towering oldgrowth trees and smaller, well-spaced newgrowth trees with clumps of dense bracken and shrubs – which make perfecting nesting places for wild animals, particularly boar. Then there are barren, cleared spaces where the Forestry Commission (FC) has felled. I have found where boars have been rooting, I have seen numerous foot marks, I have seen movement out of the corner of my eye that might or might not have been a boar and beautiful little fallow deer have made me start as they dash away, only to stop and look at me disdainfully. But I haven’t seen a boar. One of Viva!’s dedicated supporters, on the other hand, lives in the forest and photographs these secretive and peaceful animals regularly. He, Viva! and local activists have long made the case in favour of wild boar in the Forest of Dean – they were here in the Middle Ages, for goodness sake, before being hunted to extinction. They arrived back in their old homeland fairly recently and have established themselves well. Now they are being charged with such heinous crimes as rooting up roadside verges and people’s flowerbeds. How
life Viva!’s media blitz for the animals BY TONY WARDLE, EDITOR
Viva!’s staggering media blitz Viva! are pretty successful at getting media coverage for our campaigns but in all our 20 years, we have never had anything on the scale of the past three months. On too many occasions we have had big stories waiting to run and then, only hours before publication, the newspaper has killed them – often for no apparent reason. But not this time! We knew the Daily Mirror was going to support our foie-gras campaign but when we saw their coverage, we almost had to rub our eyes – we had the entire front page with a single headline – ‘Torture.’ Incredibly, it was followed by a further double-page spreads inside – pages six and seven, in prime position at the front of the paper. Our tactic of investigating farms we knew supplied Gordon Ramsay had worked brilliantly and the coverage continued. The next day the Mirror returned to the attack
with another full page (page nine) and Bill Oddie speaking out against the vile trade. A week later it was back again with a half page, announcing Masterchef’s decision to dump foie-gras. A further week and a further half page, fronted by Viva! patron Jenny Seagrove, calling on eBay to end its sale of ‘torture in a tin.’ Much of it was repeated in the Mirror’s sister paper north of the border, the Daily Record, and reverberations were felt about Europe. Scandinavian titles went for it big style and we did interviews for French TV and radio. When Ramsay announced he was dropping the foie-gras supplier we had exposed, a second wave of publicity shot around Europe. With numerous stores deciding to drop foie-gras and even whole supermarket chains, this campaign struck a serious blow for the abused ducks of France. www.viva.org.uk 21
life Veganuary triumph Try going vegan for the month of January! This simple suggestion struck a chord with media everywhere as people signed up to give it a try. It’s hard enough to get coverage for powerful, animal exposés but to get it for a concept – a vegan concept – unheard of! Until Veganuary, that is. Perhaps even more extraordinary is that almost all the coverage was entirely positive, even amongst those journalists who tried going vegan for January. The Daily Mail, Sun, BBC News Magazine, Guardian all covered it – not snippets but big articles. Herefordshire Mercury, Woman’s Way (Ireland), Oxford Mail, Liverpool Echo, GetWestLondon were joined by Australian papers, amongst many, many others. Amongst the ones we know about, BBC Radio Five Live did two big broadcasts, including one with TV presenter Jasmine Harman who signed up for the month. BBC’s Bristol and Sheffield joined in as well as United Christian Broadcasting and the Community Channel. Viva! patron Jerome Flynn, fresh out of the BBC’s drama Ripper Street, did a superb piece on Radio London www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p01lhbs2
My Lidl Plonker Again the cut-price supermarket chain, Lidl, have tried to sell kangaroo meat and again we have tackled them head on. Fronted by Dame Judi Dench, the Sun ran a piece about kangaroo slaughter with some pithy comments about cruelty. Other titles picked up on it and Lidl were slammed. See page 19.
Over the pond Uri Geller invited director Juliet to take his weekly slot on the mega popular Doug Stephan’s Good Day USA Show in December. Juliet chatted with Doug about factory farming, its links with drug companies and Viva!’s work. He gave out our website. The show is aired on over 350 radio stations and heard by three-and-a-half million listeners every week. Thanks Uri for making this happen.
For the Animals In the short space of time since the last Viva!life, we have taken our messages about compassionate living to many, many millions of people – exposing cruelty, promoting alternative ways of life and sowing the seeds of doubt that are essential to bring about social change. There is a sea change in public attitudes taking place and Viva! are proud to have helped spur it along. And with your help, we will continue to do so.
It’s nearly here – the brand new, brilliant, blooming lovely…
Viva! Cookbook – over 130 contemporary, tested vegan recipes from our own cookery expert, Jane Easton
r Pre -ord e N o w!
We push pulses into new, flavourrich dimensions; take tofu into new territory; introduce seitan and other less common ingredients. There’s souperb soups, lovely lunches, side dishes, main meals and sweet things as well as cracking combinations. It has child-friendly recipes, special dishes for non-veg friends, advice for solo eating, essentials for the store cupboard and advice on freezing. Inspiration is drawn from around the world and dominating every recipe is flavour, flavour and more
flavour. Ordinary and boring they are not! So add extra pazazz to your life with the Viva! Cookbook. Tantalising tasters: Sautéed Squash with Olive Tapenade & Cannellini Beans; luscious Two Pear Salad with Balsamic Dressing; decadent Luxury Chocolate Mousse and Viva!Bocker Glory. Moroccan Stew with Quesadillas with Guacamole & Lime Sour Cream Dip and tangy Mango Salsa. Or Big Puff Pie bursting with mixed mushrooms.
Plus – superb colour pictures of almost every recipe
The Viva! Cookbook brings vegan cooking of age and costs just £9.99 (plus £2.25 p&p). Order online at www.vivashop.org.uk/books/pre-order-viva-cookbook. Or by mail: Viva!, 8 York Court, Wilder Street, Bristol BS2 8QH (make cheque payable to Viva!). Or by phone: 0117 944 1000 (9 to 5). www.viva.org.uk 23
Illustration©Simon John Parkin
‘Pass the telescope, Horatio…’ See only that which you wish to see (and doesn’t lose you votes) has become a lodestone for our political ‘leaders,’ says Tony Wardle. Problem is, it’s killing us y sister has Alzheimer’s disease and is probably on the last furlong of her lonely downhill journey. She also has a heart condition. She first started exhibiting symptoms of AD about nine years ago. At about the same time, and unaware of her developing disease, I was reviewing a newly-published book which rubbished the idea that dementia was a natural part of growing old or a product of increasing longevity. The principal author of Dying for a Hamburger (Piatkus) is Dr Murray Waldman,
Toronto’s coroner and head of Canada’s busiest emergency department. He estimated there were 15 million people globally with AD at that time. The figure today is thought to be in excess of 30 million but with only one-in-four sufferers having been diagnosed, which amounts to 120 million cases. What on Earth lies at the heart of this explosive growth in a devastating disease that was only first diagnosed at the start of the twentieth century and to which there is no historical reference in religious, medical or secular
literature? Its physical cause is a build-up of protein fragments called plaques and tangles which kill off nerve cells and synapses in the brain. But how does it start? Is it infectious or is there something else responsible for its development? Dr Waldman establishes that AD is not evenly spread across the globe and first appeared at different times in different places. The number of people who develop AD is also very different from country to country. In India, for example, the incidence is extremely low and, of course, canny traders have latched on to this. Ten
years ago, Waldman said that if you did a Google search by entering curry alzheimers, hundreds of pages would come up offering curry powder as a palliative for AD – and it’s still true. But there’s something else about India that might hold a clue – they eat very little meat and even less beef! And it is this association that Waldman has identified globally. The growth of AD, he establishes, almost exactly mirrors the growth of modern, industrialised meat production and processing and Waldman believes the culprit might be a prion in meat – an extraordinary, misfolded protein that infects other proteins, whose growth is almost exponential and which is virtually indestructible. The first person to isolate a prion was Prof Stanley Prusiner, and it won him a Nobel Prize in 1997. Prions are, of course, the cause of mad cow disease (BSE) and its human form, Creutzfeltd-Jacob disease (CJD), both of which are also caused by plaques in the brain, albeit a different part of the brain to AD. Even if Waldman is wrong about prions, he’s certainly right about the relationship between AD and meat consumption, although you’d be forgiven for being ignorant of it. The factors that contribute to AD are listed as smoking, obesity, diabetes, high blood pressure and high cholesterol. The observant will have registered that these are precisely the same factors that produce heart disease, a condition that is almost entirely preventable. The picture is confused with talk of genetic susceptibility, the result of an ageing population and other diversionary claims to a point where we’re almost encouraged to believe that heart disease is unavoidable. Okay, a bit of exercise is good and stopping smoking but… The World Health Organisation is much less equivocal. It says that although it has looked at many dietary factors, those associated with heart disease (and many other degenerative diseases for that matter) are the “…high consumption of energy-dense foods of animal origin and foods prepared with added fat, sugar and salt.” As an example, it quotes Mauritius and its rapid adoption of a Western diet high in animal products: “In the early 1940s, cardiovascular disease amounted to only two per cent of deaths. By 1980, the figure had jumped to 45 per cent.” It also
noted that breast cancer had trebled. Despite an endless outpouring of scientific research over the years that confirms this, neither the Government nor the charities representing AD sufferers, ever spell it out. Yes, AD and heart disease do share some of the same risk factors, they will say, and chuck in the occasional off-hand reference about the importance of ‘healthy eating,’ ‘balanced diets’ and other meaningless phrases, but nowhere will you see an unequivocal recommendation to avoid eating meat, dairy and other animal products if you wish to avoid AD. It takes the latest piece of research to do the job for them. Published in the Journal of the American Medical Association last December, it establishes that the correct balance of good (HDL) and bad (LDL) cholesterol levels in the blood is essential – get the balance wrong and harmful protein deposits called beta amyloid plaques can build up in the brain. Study leader, Prof Bruce Reed, said: “Our study shows that unhealthy patterns of cholesterol could be directly causing the higher levels of amyloid known to contribute to Alzheimer’s in the same way that such patterns promote heart disease.” If this peer-reviewed research is correct, it shows that AD and heart disease don’t simply share some of the same characteristics but are essentially one and the same disease. It also follows that if heart disease is almost entirely preventable then so is AD. In reporting this study, the Daily Mail laid the blame squarely on “butter, cake and fast food,” and you’ll notice that again there is no direct mention of meat. The implication is that only fat is to blame. So let’s jump to another study, the massive China Study, which established that animal protein was every bit as damaging to health as saturated fat and is one of the main triggers for cancer. And hey presto, on page 16 is confirmation of this – a massive study from 87 countries confirming the link between meat and other animal products and cancer. Knowledge of the damaging effects of animal products has been building for over half a century, and
AD and heart disease don’t simply share some of the same characteristics but are essentially one and the same disease has largely been ignored by all governments. Rather than encouraging a reduction in meat and dairy consumption they’ve done the opposite, insisting they are essential to health, promoting them and subsidising their production. Their answer to heart disease is to put seven million people on statins and have just lowered the threshold so a further seven million will likely pop the pills, effectively masking one disease whilst encouraging others. They have ignored the link between animal products and cancer, diabetes, obesity, osteoporosis and a string of other degenerative diseases; they have paid sheep farmers to deforest and plunder the uplands and then wring their hands when the lowlands flood; they talk about global warming and do nothing to reduce its likelihood, least of all cutting the number of livestock. Farmers are the new Queen Mother – utterly beyond criticism. Apart from the fact that many of the present Government are landowning farmers and benefit from this largesse, what other reason do they have to abdicate their responsibility almost in its entirety? The policies necessary to reverse these catastrophic influences on society, they believe, will not get them elected. And so self-interest triumphs! When Nelson chose not to see the signals, it cost him his life. The present refusal to see the signals is costing millions of lives.
STOP PRESS Latest research from the University of Eastern Finland finds that eating a healthy diet of fruit, vegetables and fish between the age of 40 to 50, slashes the risk of Alzheimers disease by 90 per cent. Foods to avoid are butter, cheese, sugar, eggs, fast foods and other sources of saturated animal fat. Meat is a major source of these fats. More in the next issue of Viva!life.
Talk to the animals! The singles, Talk to the Animals and All the Same made it into the Amazon charts at Christmas! Thank you everyone who has bought the records so far and thanks to our wonderful Patrons and veggie celebrities who gave their time to sing our 20th anniversary anthems. You can now see the supporting videos online, produced by James Bond 007 film editor, Peter Davies. Talk to the Animals shows the myriad of species across the planet who deserve our awe and respect. All the Same is more hardhitting, pointing out that all life is precious and intertwined with the words juxtaposed against footage of factory farming. Peter told Viva!: “I hope the films help raise awareness. We should not tolerate the inhuman treatment of animals.” Please share the films on Facebook and order the songs from iTunes or Amazon. All funds go to Viva!.
“As the song says, the animals want to be set free. I hope this record goes some way to helping Viva! achieve that.” Hayley Mills, actress, a voice on Talk to the Animals
See www.viva.org.uk/ bigbandaid to order and view the videos
EVENTS LISTING Don’t miss out on veggie and vegan events taking place throughout spring/summer, up and down the country. If you see a little it means Team Viva! will have a stall at this event, be sure to swing by and say Hi! MARCH 2014 ■ 29-30 – VegfestUK, Brighton APRIL 2014 ■ 12 – Live a Better Life Fair, Liverpool ■ 26 – Viva! Incredible Vegan Roadshow, Gloucester MAY 2014 ■ 10 – Great Yorkshire Vegan Festival, Leeds ■ 10 – Colchester Vegan Fair, Colchester ■ 17 – Manchester Vegan Fair, Manchester ■ 23-25 – VegfestUK, Bristol JUNE 2014 ■ 7 – North West Vegan Festival, Lancaster JULY 2014 ■ 4-6 – V Delicious Show, London ■ 25-27 – Snowdon Vegan Party, Gwynedd ■ 26 – Newcastle Vegan Festival ■ 26 – Norwich Veggie Fayre For detailed information visit www.viva.org.uk/events.
Fancy Footwear Competition Winners In January, the Viva! Shop paired up with Eco Vegan Shoes to give five lucky Viva! readers the chance to win fashionable, leather-free footwear (worth up to £80). The brief was simple; submit a photo showing us where you and your new shoes would go and the submissions were stunning; from furry companions to breath-taking beauty spots. Congrats to our top lacers: Abigail Geer, Lucy Glover, Emma Kyne, Yvette Leask and Victoria Mattinson. For Eco Vegan Shoes’ full range of comfortable and stylish footwear visit www.eco-vegan-shoes.com.
LEFT: Chilling at the Mino Valley Farm Sanctuary. BELOW: Moleson mountain in Gruyeres, Switzerland
Photos©Abigail Geer & Victoria Mattinson
e b a n n a W s r a t S Pop ted! Wan It’s our 20th Anniversary and we want to get everybody involved and having fun! That’s why we’re running a new video competition to sing and shout (and maybe dance) about being vegetarian or vegan! All you have to do to enter is come up with a veggie/vegan song (change the lyrics of your favourite song to promote veggie/veganism!) and make a video – dancing, concept art, just you having a good old sing; anything you want! Have a look at the excellent Kizz & Cazz video Vegan and You Know It; and two great young sisters, Leia 10 and Esme Tiger Byrne, 8 of Poynton, Cheshire who joined in the fun with their own video – Veggie and I Know It. Both videos are at this web address: www.viva.org.uk/videoentry. If you remember the smash hit Gangnam Style, with its catchy horse dance, check out the Vegan Style parody at www.youtube.com/ watch?v=4ubOaIhlRX0. All are great examples of what we want to see! They don’t have to be pop songs, however, if reggae or rock float your boat.
Once you’ve made your superstar video, upload it to YouTube (you can upload it privately so nobody but us will see if you want!) or send it to us on a disc in the post. We’ve got some very special guest judges including BBC TV presenter and singer Sarah Jane Honeywell, Jeremy Cunningham of The Levellers, Cazz of Kizz and Cazz and Viva!’s founder, Juliet who will pick their favourites to win later on in the year!
youth news Prizes Galore! The overall prize winner will receive a fabulous Karaoke Machine with screen and two microphones worth £205, and Levelling the Land CD signed by Jeremy Cunningham. There are karaoke machines (or you can choose an iphone/ipod interactive karaoke as an alternative) for the first prize of each group. Runner up prizes in each section include £50, £30 and £20 vouchers to spend in the Viva! Shop. Videos will also be publicised on Viva!’s web and social media pages. Entries will be divided into the age categories: Under 8 years; 811; 12-14; 15-18 and over 18s. Send your entries by 12 September 2014 www.viva.org.uk/videoentry
www.vivaactivists.org.uk www.viva.org.uk/facebook www.twitter.com/vivacampaigns www.viva.org.uk 27
BeyondDark All dark chocolate is not created equal and BeyondDark’s tasty trio of 70 per cent cocoa drops are testament to that! Slowly roasted to develop the cocoa bean’s complex flavours and ground into a fine paste for no less than 72 hours, ensures that each chocolate drop retains its natural health properties (antioxidants abound!) and has a smooth, non-bitter feel in the mouth. Out of the three flavours we devoured – Original, Hints of Orange and Hints of Raspberry, the raspberry was a firm favourite for its well-rounded sweet GIVEAWAY Three lucky winners will tang, with the orange a close receive a year’s subscription second. If you need a grown-up (120 packets per prize winner!) snack that hits-the-spot, you can of BeyondDark Chocolate. To enter, email email@example.com buy a single pack for £1 (35g) or with ‘BeyondDark’ in the indulge in 12 packets for £10 from subject heading. Please www.beyonddark.co.uk include your name and address. Closing date June 30, 2014.
lifestyle For the spring issue of lifestyle, we asked our discerning Viva! Team to taste their way through a feast of new vegan eats. Here’s how we got on…
Bellissimo! Dairy Free Parmesan Everyone’s pasta seasoning of choice, Three winners will each parmesan, has had a receive a gift pack containing dairy-free makeShambhu’s four cheesecake over and we think flavours. Winners must be able to collect their frozen prize at a festival we’ve finally found where Shambhu’s will be catering. See a worthy contender www.shambhus.co.uk for event details. for top spot. To enter, email firstname.lastname@example.org with ‘Cheers for Cheesecake’ in the Bellissimo’s special subject heading. Please include blend of coconut your name and address. flour, sunflower oil, Closing date June 30, 2014. yeast extract and herbs give this savoury sprinkle If you’ve been to a veggie event recently, chances its zesty-rich taste and are you will have sampled something delicious from cheese-like smell and had our Shambhu’s Catering. These compassionate food-activists have now tasters coming back for more. launched a new range of frozen cheesecakes, available online. It is palm-oil and additive Handmade, they come in four crowd-pleasing flavours; Choc free. Conventionally, we Orange, Lemon & Coconut, Mint Choc Chip and Mixed Berries and sprinkled it over a steaming are perfectly portioned for a hungry one (or two, if you can bear to bowl of pasta but Bellissimo share). The tofu-based cream cheese filling has a whipped, velvety would certainly jazz up consistency while the gluten-free crumb base – a blend of rice, risottos, mashed potatoes potato and maize flours – is biscuity but not overly sweet. Our and soups, too. Each shaker is testers couldn’t decide on the winning flavour combo so we’re £3.49 (60g) and available saying we love them all! Buy online from online from Amazon and www.goodnessdirect.co.uk from £4.19 (155g) or visit www.anandafoods.co.uk. www.shambhus.co.uk for more info. GIVEAWAY
Cheers for cheesecake
Top of the Sauce Artisanal Italian food suppliers, Seggiano, are top sauce when it comes to dressing-up your pasta. Their new range of allvegan, parmesan-free pestos and vegetable-based sauces are made in small batches to preserve flavour and use only fresh ingredients from regional artisans. Our team of Viva! tasters were blown away, exclaiming ‘best pesto ever’ after sampling the Raw Unpasturised Basil Pesto Genovese. The aromatic and intense liquoricy flavour of the Ligurian basil, paired with the nutty sweetness of cashew nuts, added a pungent punch to the pasta which would also work well as a sandwich spread GIVEAWAY One lucky winner to or in a salsa receive a mini hamper of verde. Also in Seggiano goodies. To enter, the range: Red email email@example.com with ‘Top of the Sauce’ in the Pesto Sauce, subject heading. Please Tomato Sugo include your name and Pasta Sauce, address. Closing date June 30, 2014. Cream of Zucchini Pasta Sauce and Cime Di Rapa (Spring Turnip Top Greens). From £4.99 per 200g jar. See www.seggiano.com for stockist information.
GIVEAWAY Three lucky winners will receive a Vegan Tuck Box each. To enter, email firstname.lastname@example.org with ‘Tuck In!’ in the subject heading. Please include your name and address. Closing date June 30, 2014.
Tuck in! Set-up by two enterprising and inspiring vegans (Chrissy & Kelly), Vegan Tuck Box is a new monthly mail-order service with ethical pizzazz. The Valentine-themed box we tucked into was bursting with an eclectic mix of 10 hand-picked edibles, from sweet to savoury, including a heart-shaped chocolate lolly with raspberry pieces and crunchy soya beans covered in dark chocolate. Whether you order a single box (£22 includes p&p) or sign-up to a monthly subscription (£20/month, includes p&p), prepare to be pleasantly surprised when the post arrives. We reckon tuck boxes make the ultimate fun food gift and can be shipped anywhere in Europe! www.vegantuckbox.co.uk OFFER Subscribe to Vegan Tuck Box and get a FREE product. Use the code ‘viva’ at the checkout. Offer ends December 31, 2014.
Yes to Yerba Not just another energy drink, Club-Mate Cola is an all-natural, healthier alternative to most, made from a distinctive blend of yerba mate tea, kola nut, ginger and oranges. The main ingredient, ‘yerba mate,’ is produced from the leaves of an ancient South American jungle plant, used for
Three winners will receive a voucher each (worth £35) to spend at www.clubmate-uk.com. To enter, email email@example.com with ‘Yes to Yerba’ in the subject heading. Please include your name and address. Closing date, June 30, 2014.
centuries to combat tiredness and known to boost metabolism and concentration. Armed with this knowledge, this invigorating beverage did not disappoint. Each sip had the anticipated wake-me-up zing but with an
understated sweetness and refreshing, earthy after-taste. A case of 24 x 330ml bottles is £24. Club-Mate Cola and the original ClubMate beverages are available online from www.clubmate-uk.com.
To enter each of our amazing Lifestyle Giveaways by post, please send your name and address to: The title of the giveaway (eg ‘Cheers for Cheesecake’), 8 York Court, Wilder Street, Bristol BS2 8QH www.viva.org.uk 29
Looking for the perfect pressie? Adopt an animal! Farm Animal Sanctuary and We have joined forces with the to bring you the perfect way Viva! Poland Animal Sanctuary n abused for the food, pet and to help animals who have bee r donation will help feed and You s. entertainment industrie have often suffered terribly look after these animals, who before being rescued.
Beton the goat
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Peppa the pig
CONTINUED FROM P13 “… and we don’t proclaim to have the answers. We say find your own answers. Use the web and find others who believe the same as you. Get involved, take action – they can be small steps. Join groups like Viva!. The Arab Spring was pretty radical. Sometimes I think there’ll be global rebellion and other times not. Maybe it will be bloodless, I hope so. I’m all for positive change. “I used to call myself an anarchist, which requires an inherent belief in the goodness of humankind, that man can look after himself and treat others as he would expect to be treated. Problem is, I don’t really believe that any more. It seems the biggest will always batter the smallest so it doesn’t surprise me that people are cruel to animals because they are ruthless with each other. It’s encouraged, it’s part of the capitalist system where profit is everything, to keep the shareholders happy. The legalised death and destruction spread by the tobacco and meat industries typify it. “Look at how the badgers have been treated as scapegoats for the dairy industry. It is shocking. F***in’ terrible. Cameron should have a word with himself, stop being such a Tory! “It’s a global, multinational world. It’s here and now and no government’s gonna do anything without the say so of these people. Unfortunately, they control everything.” And of course, when you look at the meat industry, he’s absolutely right. Livestock and the fodder which feeds them has become the main drivers of world trade and it’s why hamburger companies are spreading through the developing world like a rash. “I always wonder how many cows it must take to supply McDonalds and Burger King. When I look at them, I think there’s something really sinister in the background because they’re so huge – they’re everywhere. “It’s shocking that we have no control over them and I know that one day something will happen – just because it always does. Nuclear accidents, BSE, GMOs. This kind of mass production is wrong on many levels, not least morally.” Jeremy is not only a brilliant musician and song writer but also a superb artist, doing the band’s artwork. Last year he donated artwork for our Christmas card, Turkeys Fight Back. “I did the card for Viva! because I respect what you do. I thought of that image because every Christmas I sit down with my family and they eat turkey. My mum and dad eat a lot less meat but Christmas Day is the one time my dad still tries to wind me up, even though I’ve been a vegetarian since I was about 15!”
If you want to see The Levellers, there’s no better place than their own Beautiful Day Festival in Escot Park, Devon, August 15-17. It is The Levellers’ annual 15,000 capacity, family-friendly weekend festival which is always a sell-out. Jeremy told me: “It has no corporate sponsorship and pays for itself now. We got fed up of the commercialisation of festivals. We’d be playing on stage and you’d see massive McDonalds and Coca Cola logos for hours on end; and the audience would be shepherded about like cattle. We wanted to do festivals like the ones we went to as kids – where there was good music but also lots of other stuff going in. Festivals should be about meeting people, alternative techno stuff, friendly vibes – we sell out every year because people come back year after year.” As we part, Jeremy tells me he is going to watch a film edit. “We’ve got a film coming out about the band called A Curious Life. We have been filmed for the last four years, fly on the wall stuff. There’s also footage of very early gigs and backstage shinnanigans at Glastonbury in the 90s right up to a gig last year. The bit I’ve seen was funny.” Can’t wait. A fitting tribute to one of the best and refreshingly outspoken bands of our time.
“Look at how the badgers have been treated as scapegoats for the dairy industry. It is shocking”
Jeremy’s Christmas card for Viva!, available at www.vivashop.org.uk www.viva.org.uk 31
Cookbook Recipes to help celebrate life and save the planet!
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