September 2013
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World Day for Farmed Animals - October 2 - Invite a carnivore to lunch

Every hamburger begins with an animal begging for its life.

In this edition...

Health
  Video: Heart disease starts in childhood
  Study: Breast cancer patients who eat dairy could halve their chances of survival
  'Pink slime' back on U.S. school menus
  Video: Poultry exposure tied to liver and pancreatic cancer
  Factory farms may be killing us

Environment and World Hunger
  Video: What is truly sustainable in terms of food choices?
  Animal agriculture, hunger, and how to feed a growing global population
  U.S. environment agency lets factory farms off the hook
  New colour purple depicts worsening climate risks in UN draft report
  UN report: One-third of world's food wasted annually, at great economic, environmental cost
  U.S. to spread failed pilot program that decreased food safety to every hog plant in the nation

Lifestyles and Trends
  Sign of the times: McDonald's Canada to serve meatless wraps
  Chicken or egg question cracked: Scientists create plant-based egg
  California's foie gras ban is upheld by appeals court

Animal Issues and Advocacy
  Video: Answer to why not eggs? Rescued hens spread their wings
  Anatomy of a chicken rescue
  A philosophy professor says there is a better way
  We don't need to eat atrocities
  Op-ed: Animal welfare dismissed all too often

Books and Perspectives
  Vegan Triathlete Ruth Heidrich debunks the myths about running
 

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(Excerpts are included from current news stories. Click on the "Full story" link to read the full article.)
  Health    

Video: Heart disease starts in childhood
Video source: NutritionFacts.org

By age 10, nearly all kids have fatty streaks in their arteries This is the first sign of atherosclerosis, the leading cause of death in the United States. So the question for most of us is not whether we should eat healthy to prevent heart disease, but whether we want to reverse the heart disease we may already have. Heart disease can be a choice.   Watch video...

NutritionFacts.org - September 23

Study: Breast cancer patients who eat dairy could halve their chances of survival
Full story: Daily Mail, UK

One ice cream or yoghurt a day could hinder the survival of women with breast cancer, scientists say. Those with the disease who eat a single portion daily of a product containing full-fat milk could be 50 per cent more likely to die. U.S. scientists suspect this is because milk and other dairy foods contain the hormone oestrogen, which encourages tumour growth. n fact women who ate one portion of full-fat dairy a day were 64 per cent more likely to die from any cause - not just breast cancer.   Read more...

Daily Mail, UK - March 14

'Pink slime' back on U.S. school menus
Full story: Care2

"Pink slime" is making a comeback: after a huge outcry last year over the U.S. Department of Agriculture buying 7 million pounds of this meat "product" made from processed beef trimmings treated with ammonia, all but three states said they would stop serving it to students. This year, a total of seven states are purchasing "pink slime," possibly (and certainly ironically) because of the new nutrition standards for school lunches.   Read more...

Care2 - September 15

Video: Poultry exposure tied to liver and pancreatic cancer
Video source: NutritionFacts.org

Cancer-causing viruses in poultry may explain increased risks of death from liver and pancreatic cancers.   Watch video...

NutritionFacts.org - September 13

Factory farms may be killing us
Full story: Salon

What would our healthcare system look like if we couldn't perform surgeries, administer chemotherapy, replace joints, treat diabetes? It would be the end of modern medicine as we know it. A new report from the Centers for Disease Control warns we could be headed toward that very future. As the report explains: Antibiotics are widely used in food-producing animals, and according to data published by FDA, there are more kilograms of antibiotics sold in the United States for food-producing animals than for people. This use contributes to the emergence of antibiotic-resistant bacteria in food-producing animals. Resistant bacteria in food-producing animals are of particular concern because these animals serve as carriers.   Read more...

Salon - September 20

More Health News:
7 really gross reasons to never eat meat again
Care2 (September 26)
Video: Just 3 eggs a week increase artery-clogging plaque in cartoid arteries
NutritionFacts.org (September 10)

 
  Environment and World Hunger    

Video: What is truly sustainable in terms of food choices?
Video source: Animal Place Sanctuary

Author of Comfortably Unaware: Global Depletion and Food Choice Responsibility, Dr. Oppenlander has studied extensively the effect our food choices have on our health and the immense impact those choices have on our environment. This video presentation answers the question, what is truly sustainable [for land and sea] in terms of food choices? Oppenlander debunks many of the common myths and greenwashing pitfalls of the so called sustainable animal agriculture industry.   Watch video...

Animal Place Sanctuary - August 7

Animal agriculture, hunger, and how to feed a growing global population
Full story: Forks over Knives

In a number of African countries, hunger and poverty form a complex cycle, each affecting the other and involving education, human health and social inequities, political instability, and depletion of natural resources. Eighty-two per cent of the world's starving children live in countries where food is fed to animals, which are then killed and eaten by wealthier individuals in developed countries. One fourth of all grain produced by third-world countries is now given to livestock, in their own countries and elsewhere. Therefore, on a local basis, animal-based agriculture simply perpetuates hunger, poverty, and other components of the cycle such as illiteracy and poor human health.   Read more...

Forks over Knives - August 20

U.S. environment agency lets factory farms off the hook
Full story: Care2

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has given up on requiring large-scale industrial livestock operations to submit critical water pollution information, but a new lawsuit may force them to do it anyway. A coalition of non-profit animal welfare, community, food safety and environmental groups sued EPA on August 28th. There's a lot of basic but essential information that EPA needs, and doesn't have, about a type of factory farm called a consolidated animal feeding operation (CAFO). The number of CAFOs in the U.S. increased by a whopping 230 per cent between 1982 and 2002, from 3,600 to almost 12,000. Incredibly, CAFOs produce three times as much waste as we humans do. That's the problem. EPA's withdrawal of its proposed rule, expressed simply, means that EPA has essentially told CAFOs: "Never mind. Even though we really need this information to regulate the water pollution you are causing, we'll cobble it together for ourselves. You don't need to submit it to us."   Read more...

Care2 - September 5

New colour purple depicts worsening climate risks in UN draft report
Full story: Reuters

Some parts of nature and human society are more vulnerable than expected to climate change, according to a draft of a UN report that adds a new purple colour to a key diagram to show worsening risks beyond the red used so far. It says "unique and threatened systems" like coral reefs, endangered animals and plants, Arctic indigenous communities, tropical glaciers or small island states seem be less able to adapt to warming than believed in a last report in 2007.   Read more...

Reuters - September 13

UN report: One-third of world's food wasted annually, at great economic, environmental cost
Full story: UN News Centre

The waste of some 1.3 billion tons of food each year is causing economic losses of $750 billion and significant damage to the environment, according to a new United Nations report. The report, Food Wastage Footprint: Impacts on Natural Resources, is the first study to analyze the impacts of global food wastage from an environmental perspective, looking specifically at its consequences for the climate, water and land use, and biodiversity. One of the key findings of the report is that food that is produced but not eaten each year guzzles up a volume of water equivalent to the annual flow of Russia's Volga River and is responsible for adding 3.3 billion tonnes of greenhouse gases to the planet's atmosphere. Similarly, 1.4 billion hectares of land - 28 per cent of the world's agricultural area - is used annually to produce food that is lost or waste   Read more...

UN News Centre - September 11
Related video:


Summary of the report and solutions - FAO (3:16 - September 11)


U.S. to spread failed pilot program that decreased food safety to every hog plant in the nation
Full story: Other Words

My friend Jim, a farmer, jokes about bringing a bowl of manure and a spoon to the farmers' markets where he sells his beef. "My beef has no manure in it, but you can add some," he'd like to tell his customers. I'm sure you'd pass on manure as a condiment. But unless you're a vegetarian or you slaughter your own meat, you may have eaten it. And if the USDA moves forward with its plan to make a pilot program for meat inspection more widespread, this problem can only get worse. [No doubt the case is the same in other countries and will be rolled out to U.S. owned plants in other countries. See also related Washington Post article including video.]   Read more...

Other Words - September 11

More Environment and World Hunger News:
Beef consumption leading to deplete Kansas aquifer by 70 per cent in just a few decads
Care2 (September 11)
The real reason Kansas is running out of water
Mother Jones (September 3)

 
  Lifestyles and Trends    

Sign of the times: McDonald's Canada to serve meatless wraps
Full story: National Post

For the first time in more than a decade, McDonald's Canada is going meatless with its entrée offerings [introducing] two new meatless Signature McWraps aimed squarely at the 71 per cent of Canadians who seek veggie-only options "at least sometimes." [Unfortunately neither are vegan but it's a step.]   Read more...

National Post - August 13

Chicken or egg question cracked: Scientists create plant-based egg
Full story: Fox News

An artificial egg product approved by Bill Gates and Paypal co-founder Peter Thiel is made entirely from plants, thanks to food scientists at San Francisco-startup Hampton Creek Foods. Tetrick came up with the idea for Just Mayo and Beyond Eggs products, after returning to the United States after 7 years of living in Sub-Saharan Africa working with impoverished communities. "When I got back, I wanted to see how I could use business to make a difference," Tetrick [said. He] says that there are 1.8 trillion eggs laid every year, nearly all of which come from "places that normal people do not what their food to come from."   Read more...

Fox News - September 11

California's foie gras ban is upheld by appeals court
Full story: Los Angeles Times

A California ban on the sale of foie gras, a delicacy produced from force-fed birds, meets constitutional muster, a federal appeals court ruled [August 30]. A three-judge panel of the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals unanimously upheld a district judge's refusal to block the law, which prohibits the sale of products made from birds that have been forced to eat abnormally large amounts of food to enlarge their livers. The court said there was no doubt that California banned the sale of foie gras to discourage its consumption and to "prevent complicity in a practice that it deemed cruel to animals." The panel also rejected claims that the ban amounted to a discriminatory regulation of interstate commerce.   Read more...

Los Angeles Times - August 30

More Lifestyles and Trends News:
Can I afford to go vegan like Bill Clinton? A cost-benefit analysis
GoBanking.com (August 25)
Cats and dogs on vegan diets
The Australian (August 10)

 
  Animal Issues and Advocacy    

Video: Answer to why not eggs? Rescued hens spread their wings
Video source: Animal Place Sanctuary

An answer to what's wrong with eggs... Animal Place Sanctuary saved 3,000 hens from an egg farm where they would have been gassed and dumped in the local landfill. These are their first moments of freedom - out of cages and into sanctuary.   Watch video...

Animal Place Sanctuary - August 7

Anatomy of a chicken rescue
Full story: These Glass Walls Blog

Imagine, just for a moment, living in a small wire cage with five or even ten other people, unable to stretch an arm or a leg. Everyone else in the cage is pressed against you. The wire digs into your feet. You are crawling with parasites and have no choice but to urinate and defecate where you stand, the smell of ammonia and feces stinging your eyes and nostrils. Really picture it for a sec. Now imagine living that way for two years, only to be gassed or slaughtered at the end of it. Chickens are intelligent, feeling animals. They are empathetic and have relationships with other chickens, and indeed with other animals. It is unconscionable that we force any being to live in such total deprivation and misery. And yet we do, in numbers too high to truly fathom, every single day. [Read about the rescue of a few lucky ones by Farm Sanctuary. And watch video coverage.]   Read more...

These Glass Walls Blog - September 11

A philosophy professor says there is a better way
Full story: Minneapolis Star Tribune, U.S.

My first visit to Farm Sanctuary was earlier this summer... Seeing the animals living out their lives helped me know what the lives of animals on factory farms could be like. And that helps me know just how much we take from them when we raise them for food. I'm reminded of this bit from Jonathan Safran Foer's excellent book Eating Animals: "We can't plead ignorance, only indifference. Those alive today are the generations that came to know better. We have the burden and the opportunity of living in the moment when the critique of factory farming broke into the popular consciousness. We are the ones of whom it will be fairly asked, What did you do when you learned the truth about eating animals?"   Read more...

Minneapolis Star Tribune, U.S. -

We don't need to eat atrocities
Full story: Eatkind Blog

This video [at the link] is from the UK where animal welfare standards are assumed to be much more progressive than in North America. And yet just look at the everyday atrocities documented here by a major UK animal rights group in eight out of nine slaughterhouses they randomly chose to investigate. Or don't look. One minute of this exposé of the banality of slaughterhouse evil should be enough to persuade anyone with a sense of shame that we have no moral leg to stand on eating bacon and hamburgers, cheddar cheese and chicken wings, at the cost of such mistreatment of animals when we could be nourishing ourselves at least as adequately on a plant-based diet. Nearly every craving for meat or dairy - a taste most of us acquired long before we had the ability to make a moral choice about it - can be met, with increasing satisfaction as food companies refine their products, by plant-based/vegan substitutes. Not that there's any nutritional need for them, but they're there if we crave them. We're grownups now. The choice is clear - and it tastes just great.   Read more...

Eatkind Blog - August 30

Op-ed: Animal welfare dismissed all too often
Full story: Vancouver Sun

Online comments on news stories are probably not the best source of wisdom but they do provide some insight into current public perceptions. One common sentiment, expressed whenever an animal welfare issue dominates the news, goes something like this: "Why all the fuss about animals? When did they become more important than humans?" Here are a few facts about the importance we place on animals... It's funny how famine, disease and war rarely enter our thoughts when we're having a drink by the pool in Maui, admiring the cool sunglasses we just bought. No, those thoughts only emerge when someone dares to say we should do more for animals.   Read more...

Vancouver Sun - September 8

More Animal Issues and Advocacy News:
New course at Queen's University Canada: Animals in philosophy, politics, law & ethics
Queen's University, Canada
The shocking truth about leather: No, itís not a meat byproduct
The majority of leather comes from Indiaís cows, who are abused, beaten and poisoned in order to make leather for high street stores. - Care2 (September 25)
Seafood plant rips apart live lobsters and crabs, says PETA
Petition at the link - Care2 (September 23)

 
  Books and Perspectives    

Vegan Triathlete Ruth Heidrich debunks the myths about running
Full story: Ruth Heidrich

A cancer survivor, an Ironman Triathlete, and widely decorated marathoner, Ruth Heidrich has long been been a role model to athletes of all ages. But over the years even Ruth herself has encountered the various, commonly held misbeliefs about running, from "women shouldn't run" to "you need to change your diet to run," that prevent people from lacing up their shoes and getting off the couch. In Lifelong Running: Overcome the 11 Myths of Running and Live a Healthier Life, Ruth Heidrich debunks those myths and many more while providing the motivation, inspiration, and resources to start or maintain an activity whose benefits will last a lifetime. [Editor's note: Ruth literally changed my life and attitude to exercise when I heard her speak several years ago. Read Viva la Vegan's interview with Ruth.]   Read more...

Ruth Heidrich - September

Also of interest:

Events:

World Day for Farmed Animals - October 2
Dedicated to exposing and memorializing the 65 billion land animals raised for food who suffer and die every year. Check local events...
World Day for Farmed Animals

IVU World VegFest - Kuala Lumpur & Penang, Malaysia, October 3-9
Coupled with the 6th Asian Vegetarian Congress, the 41st IVU World VegFest will be better than ever...
IVU World VegFest

VegSource Healthy Lifestyle Expo 2013 - October 18-20, CA
Featuring icons in the plant-powered lifestyle world T. Colin Campbell, Phd, and Caldwell Esselstyn, MD, in addition to an impressive array of other presenters. This year the expo is giving away two unique written programs to take away.
Healthy Lifestyle Expo

Farm Sanctuary's Celebration for the Turkeys - November 2, Orland, California, November 9, Acton, California (Los Angeles area), November 16, Watkins Glen, New York
Click below for more info. Also check out the Walk/Sleep-in for Farm Animals (through November).
Farm Sanctuary
Farm Sanctuary Sleepin for Farm Animals

Websites and Blogs:

Read inspiring rescue stories at Animal Advocates - like the story of Keesha.
Keesha's rescue

Vegan bodybuilder Ed Bauer is showing that a healthier and compassionate plant-based approach is the way to go...
VeganBodybuilding.com

With Hope They Waited: The Mile 26 Rescue is the book written by Marilyn Dickie because she was so moved by the efforts of those involved in the rescue of 64 dogs during a fire in northern Ontario. The inspiring book includes true stories from the rescuers, rescues and adoptive families, poems and photos of the rescue. 100 per cent of proceeds from the sale of the book go to the rescues. Watch the moving video about the book...

Email to order book

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