/' http-equiv='refresh'/> Vegan Outreach Lincoln and East Midlands: 2011

24.12.11

Merry Christmas

Pictures taken by Wanda Embar, Vegan Peace at Farm Sanctuary.




We at VOLE hope you have a fantastic Vegan Christmas. No matter if you are hosting your first vegan gathering or taking some tasty food to a friend/relatives may the day be perfect.

If you need last minute recipe ideas check out the recipe pages on the right. I would seriously suggest cashew nut balls,carrot cupcakes (gf) and the ginger and tofu cheesecake.

23.12.11

Kate Middleton Not Shooting On Boxing Day.......So What?

Apparently Kate Middleton (or Windsor) wont be shooting on the traditional royal family boxing day hunt. So what? There are varying opinions on whether it is to avoid controversy amongst animal welfare advocates or as a friend of the Duchess told the press the decision not to shoot at Sandringham "has more to do with tradition than anything else" because "ladies do not hold the gun during a shoot."

PETA are (of course) saying the decision was made because they sent her a letter telling her how cruel shooting is. Remember this is hardly Kate giving up shooting all together but likely trying to keep her carefully managed image intact, the British public wouldn't like to see her kill a pheasant. Why should there be anymore of a problem seeing her kill an animal than there is that she consumes and uses animals. It's another example of moral schizophrenia.


It is two days away from Christmas when 10 million Turkeys are killed just for the UK market. That's just one non-human animal, don't forget the butter people put on their vegetables, the milk they cook their bread sauce with, the angels or devils on horseback, the list goes on and on. Nowhere on PETA UK's front page is anything about this bigger picture. For those of us who care about the use and abuse of all non-humans Christmas can be a very sobering time of year (obviously their use is constant but tends to be heavier still at Christmas). The most ethical thing you can do on Christmas day is to make it cruelty free (aka VEGAN). Check out our recipe pages for some ideas.

 http://www.peta.org/b/thepetafiles/archive/2011/12/21/kate-middleton-puts-down-the-gun.aspx
http://vegnews.com/articles/page.do?pageId=4040&catId=8

A Little Christmas Present For You All! (New Recipes)

We would like to thank Christine for sending the fantastic recipes that she used to cook up
some delicious dishes for the Lincoln Veggie Fayre 2011. These include tofu swirls, ginger and lemon tofu cheesecake, chocolate and orange jelly cakes (jaffa cakes) and many more.
These can be found here:


http://veganoutreachuk.blogspot.com/p/lincoln-veggie-fayre-2011-sweet-recipes.html



 

10.12.11

Abattoir Worker Slits Puppy's Throat

Abattoir Worker Slits Puppys Throat
A story from the Daily Mail (sorry!), basically an ex-abattoir worker decided he wanted to rehome or put down a six month puppy (he "owned") as he said she attacked his 19 month old child. He didnt want to pay £70 for the vet to do it but he was told the RSPCA would do it for free and went home to apparently get the pup. He said the pup attacked him so he decided to kill her himself. He cut her (the puppy's) throat, he stabbed her 'between the ribs' and it will have taken between 10 and 30 minutes to die.
Sadly those society pays to kill sentient beings (the animals in the abattoir) have to become totally disconnected from what they do day to day otherwise how could they do it? It's no surprise that this man could do the same activity in his non work life. Where's the furious outcry regarding the 750 Million land animals (not including the 600 million fish) killed each year just in the UK? None of this suffering is necessary as humans thrive on a vegan diet!

26.11.11

A Day of Vegan Advocacy- Alternative Christmas Market

 We had a good day of vegan outreach at the Alternative Christmas Market. We brought along some vegan goodies, sticky toffee and raspberry cupcakes, gingerbread etc. All the recipes can be found at the link below.
http://veganoutreachuk.blogspot.com/p/recipes-sweet.html

We had some interesting discussions and if anyone has any questions,thoughts etc then dont hesitate to get in touch with us via email, veganoutreacheastmidlands@gmail.com.

Goodies
Leaflets
Booja Booja

23.11.11

Vegan Food and Education Stall Saturday 26th November

We will be doing a vegan food and education stall on Saturday (26th) at Croft Street Community Centre for the annual Alternative Christmas Market from 10am to 4pm, directions here http://www.croftstreetcentre.co.uk/ContactUs.htm.

We will be selling a range of vegan goodies from sticky toffee cupcakes,to bags of cruelty free crunchie to gingerbread cookies and more. We will be there showing that you can show seasonal goodwill to ALL animals and still have fantastic food. All the recipes will be on here alongside some more Christmas ones to make having a vegan Christmas as easy (and tasty) as possible.

18.11.11

Interview with Vegan Outreach Lincoln and East Midlands - In the Examiner

http://www.examiner.com/vegan-in-roanoke/interview-with-vegan-outreach-lincoln-and-east-midlands

We've had an interview published in the Examiner,we were approached due to it being Vegan Month.In the interview Ruth talks about animal rights and what we believe the movement is doing well and not so well.

Interview with Vegan Outreach Lincoln and East Midlands


 In celebration of World Vegan Month, I will be hosting a collection of interviews with vegan abolitionists from across the globe.  I'm excited to have this opportunity to showcase vegan activists and give a face to our beautiful movement.  Be sure to check back for regular installments throughout the month of November.
Today's featured vegan abolitionist is Ruth Sanderson, speaking on behalf of Vegan Outreach Licoln and East Midlands in England.
Note:  This organization is not to be confused with the non-abolitionist, new welfarist, and American-based group, Vegan Outreach.
Ruth, please describe your organization...
Myself and my partner Marcus are both abolitionist vegans and the founders of VOLE: Vegan Outreach Lincoln and East Midlands (No relation to the USA based Vegan Outreach). Marcus has been vegan for over ten years. I went vegetarian at 14 as soon as I realised who I was eating. As I learned of the suffering implicit in eggs, dairy, honey, silk, etc., I gradually cut them out of my life until one day, about four years ago, I realised I was a vegan. We also both have strong environmental consciences so the ecological credentials of a vegan diet are a great additional bonus.

We attend events that might lend themselves to offering a receptive audience for non-violent, vegan education. We've had mixed results so far, but it's all a learning process. Our presence exposes attendees to a new meme that they may not have considered before. Whatever the reaction, that initial exposure has at least taken place.
We also keep a regularly updated blog, have put on a university film screening for World Vegan Day, and delivered several talks. We hope to continue along similar lines, whilst being open to new ideas on how best to get the message out there.
What do you think should be the focus of the non-human animal rights movement?
We believe the educative focus of the animal rights movement should be "veganism or bust". No confusing, inconsistent messages.  Instead, only a firm statement that all animal use, irregardless of the measure of suffering, is unacceptable. As such, all available resources should be put towards achieving the goal of abolishing animal use through creative, non-violent vegan advocacy.

What are some of the biggest obstacles to reaching our goals?
A big obstacle we face are the cash-rich animal welfare groups eschewing consistent vegan education in favour of emotive and simplistic single issue targets. These serve only to maximise fundraising profits whilst sending out a confused message of what constitutes one's obligations towards other animals. They often work hand-in-hand with the interests of those who are exploiting the animals in a mutually gratifying PR campaign.  As such, they achieve very little. This way of doing things seems to have failed in taking just one glance at the statistics regarding numbers of animals used and vegans gained. A truly pitiful lack of progress.
We can actually give a personal account of where we believe things to be going wrong, as we were heavily involved in the local, single issue campaign opposing the proposed USA-style super dairy at Nocton. Our research led us to believe that the scrapped plan for this dairy was only a hollow victory. Factory farming remains entirely legal and the proposal only failed on environmental grounds.  It had nothing to do with animal welfare.
The campaign did nothing to address the huge demand for cheap, plentiful cow's milk.  Further still, the "Not in My Cuppa" slogan went above and beyond in offering tacit approval to all other sources of dairy milk. This fundamental flaw, coupled with welfare and environmental standards remaining comparable to that of standard farming practices, led us to question the actions of both local and big animal welfare groups. All of whom, meanwhile, were squabbling over who could claim public credit for a fundamentally worthless "victory."
How is your activism impacted by where you live?
Marcus and I set up Vegan Outreach Lincoln and East Midlands within the last six months as we became increasingly frustrated at the lack of vegan education opportunies in a very welfare-centric, local group in Lincolnshire. We gave years of highly involved service:  co-organising several events (including the Lincoln Veggie Fayre), procuring and preparing free food, sponsorship, etc.  So, until the very end, we tried our best to steer things in the right direction.
However the said group's influential figures seemed to be ashamed of veganism, almost apologetically so. They saw it as a "radical" concept at odds with their establishment-centered, conservative inclinations. This made it difficult to properly welcome individuals deemed to be anarchists, "hippies", "pinkos," etc., or to attend their events when invited to do so. This discrimination denied vegan education to entire groups of people, many of whom are highly interested in opposing prejudices such as speciesism.
With a penchant for ego-led self-publicity, the individuals involved also seemed more interested in fundraising and maximising profits than promoting veganism.  This is something we felt very much at odds with. In fact, apart from the group name, there was not even a definition of veganism on their website, nor any suggestion of why anyone should think to consider becoming vegan. Frustrated at the total lack of democracy and accountability, and after receiving an explicit statement that it was no longer to be considered a vegan group, we left and are happily "radical" advocates of non-violent vegan education.
What are your other interests and activities?
We are avid fans of Sheffield Wednesday football club and particularly enjoy the music of The Smiths, Morrissey and Prince. We also enjoy walking our super fit and vegan rescue dogs, preferably amongst nature and away from the encroachments of civilization.

17.11.11

Abolitionism in a Nutshell

Gary Francione notes four main problems with welfarism:

It helps animals little, if at all.
It makes the public feel better about the exploitation.
It does nothing to eradicate the property status of animals (which is key to actually helping animals in legal and social ways).
It's a zero sum game - every second spent could be spent on vegan education - which does help.

Francione's position has underlined this for years, and for a long time this was ignored, as before the internet the big animal groups ruled the movement. Now this knowledge is becoming commonly knounderstood, local grassroots groups are free to pursue the most effective animal advocacy of all; vegan education.

16.11.11

How to Best Help Animals Speech

This talk was first given at the Lincoln Veggie Fayre 2011. It was given with a PowerPoint presentation in the background. The recorded speech and slideshow  presentation will be available on here soon.  

The speech was intended to challenge the welfarist message being spread by the large organisations on the day and give those who attended food for thought. We handed out Vegan:UK, Vegan Society and Boston Vegan Association leaflets and pamphlets. Please feel free to use the speech and alter it, provided the underlying abolitionist message stays the same. 

How to Best Help Animals?
As I'm sure many of you already know, a vegan is a person who to the greatest extent possible seeks to avoid materials derived from other animals. We have placed vegan leaflets around the room and urge you to help yourself to those. There are a multitude of reasons that lead one towards veganism, the most compelling of which tends to be animal rights ethics, but personal health and environmental concerns are also well founded bonuses.

Ethical quandaries include the fate of the male calves left obsolete from the perpetual pregnancies of the dairy cows, or the male hatchlings useless to the egg industry who are tossed into a shredding machine at birth. Why do we make beloved family members of dogs and eat the categorically more intelligent pig? It takes killing 150 silk worms to death to make just one silk tie? These are all examples of speciesism.

Speciesism is the irrational belief that other species’ interests deserve less consideration than our own, even when our interests are comparatively trivial. Animal rights when taken to it's logical conclusion can oblige us to oppose speciesism and the subsequent exploitation of other animals. The thinking goes that should a sentient being be seen as mere property then that property will inevitably be subject to any abuses which their human owners choose to bestow upon them.

This is as the owners are legal persons, whereas the animals are deemed legal property. Bargaining for the interests of property against persons is like playing cards with a rigged pack – you aren’t going to get a fair result. Therefore it is the use of animals that is the main problem, rather than the inevitable cruelty endemic to the practice that results.

Most people oppose inflicting unnecessary suffering on an animal but with alternatives widely available to virtually every animal sourced food, nutrient or article of clothing can any of our use and abuse of animals truly be said to be necessary? Is eating animal products purely for the pleasurable taste experience really that different from those who enjoy dog fighting? Both are sources of unnecessary suffering and death inflicted on sentient beings in the name of a human's personal pleasure.

The abolitionist approach takes this understanding to the logical conclusion, that all use and exploitation of sentient animals should be opposed with equal measure. We assert that only abolition rather than regulation should be strived for and veganism is the moral baseline by which to achieve this goal.

Environmentally, the United Nations Livestock's Long Shadow report has left us in no doubt that livestock use is creating a crisis. The remaining clean water supplies are being used up and polluted and cattle farming alone creates more global warming gases per year than all the worlds transport systems combined; yes that's every output from every car, train and plane. It is also responsible for 80% of amazon rainforest destruction and 80% of the soya grown on this cleared land is intended for livestock to eat.

While millions of humans die of hunger it takes 6-8 calories of grain to produce one calorie of meat, if the world adopted a vegan diet nobody would need to starve. The grain needn't inefficiently pass through an animal, we can go directly to source and in doing so reduce the health risks associated with consumption of animal products such as various forms of cancer, hypertension and heart attacks. 

In the light of these truths I can't patronise you by pretending going vegetarian makes any real difference for animals, your health or the environment, as to a lesser, or often an even greater extent it still supports the perpetuation of the animal farming industry and encourages all the same problems as such. 

For example a diet lower in meat, but heavier in dairy and eggs can be much more damaging in all the aforementioned regards than some omnivorous diets where meat and dairy occupy smaller parts of the diet. Many people are addicted to dairy due to it containing a drug to encourage calves suckling. As a result it often seems many people would suckle from the cow directly given the chance. 

People have long been wrongly led by large animal welfare groups to believe that vegetarianism and veganism are two sides of the same coin, they are not.

Vegetarians (especially long-term ones) often become entrenched in the belief that they are doing all they can and have met their moral obligations towards other animals. Again I blame this on large charities telling them they're doing the right thing. It’s entirely possible however to pass through vegetarianism while transitioning to a vegan diet. That's how I personally became vegan but if I had been given the information I would have gone vegan straight away.

A big campaign for the vegetarian activist is avoiding rennet in cheese. The very same rennet, which is produced from the stomachs of calves. Calves that are created and killed by the dairy industry, often for veal. Their production a mere byproduct of the cow's continued pregnancies so she will lactate and facilitate the making of products for humans such as cheese. This hugely contradictory cycle alone is instantly obvious and hugely problematic if claiming any quantifiable ethical foundation to the vegetarian position. Both meat eaters and vegetarians pay into the animal industry complex and both have animals suffer and die for their diets.

Similarly if one really wants to prevent the badger cull, reconsider your financial support of the dairy industry before you complain to anyone else, as it is their business interests and lobbying that is crowding out and hastening towards the extermination of these free living wild animals. Very few of the big organisations are brave enough to point out and encourage action on even this most basic position, instead they rely on petitions and single issue campaigns which skirt around the problem.

A single issue campaign is when an organisation focuses resources on any individual issue rather than providing a consistent vegan message. Snapping off an easy to reach twig that will grow back somewhere else instead of hacking at the rotten trunk.

This focus leaves little in the way of an explicitly vegan message. How long has Paul McCartney been blathering on about being veggie for VIVA? You’d think someone so deeply passionate about animals would have connected the ethical dots by now? But what can be expected when he’s working with a group who still use the ethically worthless tag of Vegetarian in their name? As with other such groups while claiming an underlying vegan belief they still find themselves too cowardly to put public focus on using the necessary word as a permanently visible moral baseline.

PETA well known for their single issue campaigns, embarrassing sexist publicity stunts and awarding "welfare awards" to designers of nicer slaughterhouses acknowledged that only half of their members even call themselves vegetarian.

This from a group, making such a business of animal rights that they raised over £20m pounds profit in 2009 alone. Imagine if they opened up their vast coffers and ploughed all the money into supporting a consistent abolitionist vegan message? An actual, quantifiable culture shift could take place.

The inconvenient truth is that we don't need the big organisations and their confusing campaigns, nor do the animals. They have failed them. Their victories have led to more and more animals being used with only a consistently tiny segment of their supporters becoming vegan – as they instead ask people to take up random single issue campaigns rather than considering long term veganism.

To stay on the theme of dairy farming let us flashback to January 2011; in the dark of night an animal behaviour student is sat up at stupid o'clock completing an essay comparing models of production in farming. The Nocton super dairy is heavily in the news, as the decision on it's planning application is expected within a few months. 

The student is me and inspired by the situation, I had chosen to study and compare the "monstrous" super dairies with assumed superior standard, traditional forms of farming. Surely it's an open and shut case right? Sadly my illusions were shattered as I sat there aghast when I realised I was now a newly converted supporter of the Nocton Super Dairy proposal.

Not a supporter in the literal sense certainly, given I'm vegan, but a supporter in the sense that if a dairy was to be built the plan for Nocton certainly didn't seem a worse way of meeting the public's demand for  a steady flow of cheap dairy product than a traditional dairy farm.

At this point I was an ardent critic of the Nocton plans along with virtually everyone else, proudly displaying my "Say no to the mega dairy" sticker like virtually everyone else and I was involved in several local campaigns against it and even protested with picket signs. Talk about shattering an illusion, the victory that was within our grasp of a refusal suddenly felt very hollow and not much like a victory at all.

Not only were the welfare levels comparatively competitive with the existing status quo traditional farms but many scientific studies actually came out in favour of the environmental standards too. There's something to be said for having a large business located in one area, especially with an onsite anaerobic digester etc.

Was the campaign really based on sound logic or was it a preserve of emotive thinking over factual evidence and a matter of simply “not in my back yard” for the locals? The local Nocton residents' group called Campaign against factory farming operations have gone oddly quiet since the super dairy plans went away, strange that. I should have seen through the faux righteousness when they never had any soya milk in when I popped in for a cup of tea.

Surely the campaign against the foston pig farm will use the same tactic with their similarly pointless “not in my banger” slogan already up. Maybe the Nocton group will get involved but I wouldn’t hold yours breath, there’s already a new set of NIMBY’s already forming in Foston.

In all honesty few of us would actually enjoy having a stinking, great, super dairy nearby, but on an overcrowded island of people who demand large amounts of dairy it's going to come from somewhere. If the demand for milk products isn't addressed then nothing will really change. The chairs are shuffled on the Titanic but the same ethically problematic iceberg is still approaching.

So who really benefits from such a hollow victory for animals? I would suggest it is the big money stashing organisations and the egos within local groups who thrive on having their names appear in the media. 

The opportunity is there for them to get patted on the back for maintaining the status quo with very little in the way of actual progress. Actual serious progress of course would be met with much greater resistance from industry forces. How other animals actually benefit from these victories in cumulative terms or even factor into the equation at all is often unclear to say the least.

Compassion In World Farming were on the scene at Nocton, an organisation representing farmers and the animals they farm. What was that about a rigged deck again? Let us consider World Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals and their Not In My Cuppa campaign which back then was highly visible.

It suggests that we should boycott any prospective super dairy sourced milk, i.e. that any other source of milk is preferable to instead use in our tea and ergo this is the compassionate action we should take on behalf of dairy cows. The supermarkets gladly followed this lead, a glib gesture to say the least as I will explain.

Non-super dairy milk, of course meaning all milk, currently, given there are no super dairies in the UK. Advocated promoting this campaign are not taking a very vegan position as they are promoting the consumption of dairy. Similarly these same people could be found arguing that cows belong in fields, a field being a fenced off area owned by a farmer, the cows within, likewise. Again, continuing the speciesist prejudice that other animals should be seen as human property. Again, I argue not very vegan.
Many was the time I sat back mystified as vegan spokespeople who profess to believe in basic animal rights would be constantly putting themselves forward in the media only to make platitudes to traditional dairy farmers, even going as far as wishing them success in saying any who aren't involved with super dairies should be supported.

It is the very fundamental truths of veganism that get lost within the cash grab of the big organisation's advocacy. Confronting people with uncomfortable truths and a consistent perspective doesn't tend to engender such warm feelings nor does it maximise donations on which the hired staff rely for their wages, thereby it is much more profitable to pick their campaigns and victories accordingly. The person who cares for animals is trapped in a state of learned helplessness and is told sending off a monthly cheque to VIVA, PETA or any other "animal welfare" charity is the end of their obligations towards animals.
What more could individuals ever hope to accomplish anyway? The big groups never cease to keep telling them of these numerous supposedly "significant" victories. Single issue victories that tend to achieve very little in real terms and more often than not serve only to make people feel better about animal use. Thus they are granted permission to consume animal products in ever greater quantities. The net effect is more animal use and more implicit cruelty.

In the case of Nocton, the victory was claimed by one and all; from local groups like CAFFO to the usual national names. "We couldn't have done it without you!" (meaning your donations!) they cried at every opportunity. 

Meanwhile in reality, behind the smokescreens it was the environmental agency’s doubts that made them pulled the plug on the plan. The Nocton super dairy didn't meet the necessary criteria and that was that. The petitions and outrage may have had an incidental effect if at all. Animal rights criteria wasn't even relevant to the case, as factory farming is entirely legal and thus disregarded from the decision process. 

No, the supposed animal rights organisations have failed and failed badly in achieving any true victories. More animals are being used than ever whilst the people who opt out of this usage (the vegans) remain a small mysterious minority.

In the materials distributed today or in the following talks you might be told to campaign against kangaroo skin in football boots or against cats and dogs being used for fur. Emotive causes that will encourage donations whilst flying in the face of true, consistent vegan advocacy that could actually start a cultural shift of real long term import. Significant change toward veganism – the only thing that will actually help animals – is highly impeded by these single issue campaigns.

True vegan advocacy recognises if you choose to campaign against individual forms of use and abuse you thereby give cause to think other forms of use are lesser issues and somehow more justifiable. Foie gras is unjustifiable but sausages are better, kangaroo skin is unjustifiable but cow skin is better, cat and dog fur is unjustifiable but mink and chinchilla fur is better. Or to get back on topic super dairy milk is unjustifiable but standard milk production is better.

If you campaign against these supposedly worse uses, you perpetuate the popularly held idea that only animal use perceived as extreme is a problem. If you are doing this as a group like Viva!, who are publically seen as authorities for animal interests, then you’re pretty much telling people to boycott these extreme, rare animal uses whilst ignoring the more common, sadly normal animal uses in their own lives, and neglecting the moral issue of using animals at all.

Furthermore, all the time given to muddying the ethical waters with these single issue campaigns is time lost that could have been given to a consistent message of vegan advocacy. Every minute wasted, suggesting a single issue deserves special focus, is a minute further away from challenging the paradigm of animal use being the problem. 

Vegan education again is the answer. We shouldn't be aiming to reform the cruelty; we should be aiming to abolish it. The problem isn't so much how big a chicken's cage is, rather that the chicken is in a cage at all. That the chicken as a sentient animal is an owned piece of property akin to a chair, pencil or a table is the problem. 

The steps to abolishing this use will not come through challenging one use at a time – and in the process making people feel more comfortable with everyday animal use, but rather growing the number of ethical vegans by one at a time.
The time given to campaigns revolving around humane, freedom food, organic, free range and any other similar classifications are as satisfactory as not beating your slave on Sundays. They serve only to ignore the abolitionist goal and work hand in hand with animal agriculture to work out systems and mutually gratifying PR campaigns whereby they can maximise their profits by appeasing the public and often improving the efficiency of the exploitation in the process. 

On the subject of the RSPCA's Freedom Food classification, take a look at one of the many exposes done within the farms that earn that high welfare classification and decide for yourselves whether they constitute any real improvement worth striving for. Surprisingly the dancing cows, ambling through lush fields in the TV adverts, are lying to you.

Should we really expect any real significant level of protection from the RSPCA though when their chief executive is on record as saying "The RSPCA believes that whether it’s chicken, ham or turkey, you can enjoy your Christmas lunch and still care about the animals that provided it." Be glad that oh so very speciesist charity isn't in charge of protecting you or me. That kind of protection is one we can all do without.

Today can either inspire more donations into the pot of welfarist groups and their single issue campaigns. You can continue the misapprehension that veganism is too radical, rather I would counter it is the way humans both omnivore and vegetarian use and abuse other animals that is radical.

In all truth I genuinely hope you will reject the unsatisfactory status quo and all it's empty rhetoric and will instead join the growing movement to embrace the abolitionist approach and go vegan for the environment, your health and most importantly the animals. It's not about money it’s about you, me, consistent vegan abolitionist arguments, literature and an audience to hear it and continue the process. 

That audience is everywhere we go, whether it be a one on one conversation, a letters page in a newspaper, an online website forum or a stall offering tasty cupcakes to sweeten the message. The world will not change overnight, but no social change ever has. This shouldn’t stop us from starting moving toward veganism, one vegan at a time, rather than sinking to the depths of atrocious single issue campaigns.

Please take the leaflets, and check out our website, our cards with the details are with the leaflets. The blog will have all the recipes from today’s event on it to help you with cruelty free eating as well as plenty of other information. 

Remember that the power is yours to encourage a real actual cultural shift in favour of emancipating other animals. Giving time and effort to the tacit promotion of killing cows for your shoes instead of kangaroos won't get us there.

You were never helpless. You never needed to employ someone else to work for animals on your behalf.  Come join us in abolitionist outreach, we have a stall in the main room up here. Be the vegan change you want to see. Thank you.

12.11.11

First Batch of Recipes from Lincoln Veggie Fayre 2011

Here are the first of the recipes from the Lincoln Veggie Fayre, more to come!

http://veganoutreachuk.blogspot.com/p/lincoln-veggie-fayre-2011-sweet-recipes.html


 http://veganoutreachuk.blogspot.com/p/lincoln-veggie-fayre-2011-savoury.html

Lincoln Veggie Fayre 2011 - A thank you

We had a stall at the Lincoln Veggie Fayre which we (as individuals not VOLE) have co-organised for the last two years. Ruth gave a speech titled "How Best to Help Animals" which will be available both as an audio file and a written version on here soon. Despite being a wide ranging, challenging critique of animal rights, animal welfare organisations, NIMBYs, campaigner egos, vegetarians et al the speech was well received with around 25 people attending it.

Our stall encouraged great debate and interest regarding veganism. We gave out plenty of leaflets and hope they will provoke deep thought regarding animal ethics. We thank The Vegan Society, The Boston Vegan Association and our friends at Vegan UK for those. Also much thanks to Richard for helping us get the message out there.

The experience of the last few years have shown us how effective and positive providing lots of free vegan food and free entry can be in enticing people in to receive a vegan message. We have fought for both these aspects to remain in place as we truly believe it is education rather than a profit motive that lends integrity to such an event. Originally the Fayre was founded as a free vegan food giveaway with free entry and for this year at least it was able to remain somewhat true to those principles.

With help from some truly inspirational kitchen volunteers (Christine, Joe, James and Nicky) we were able to make an entire room's worth of diverse food. From health to comfort foods, we had cupcakes, cashew balls, salads, cookies, cheesecakes etc for all to enjoy. All recipes available on our blog.

Our only regret is that we couldn't make MORE food available but believe us when we say we tried our best. 

Below are some photos of the food from the Friday night, before it was unleashed on the public. More to come from the day itself amongst other things...

Lots of goodies

pizza rolls,jaffa cakes, ginger cookies and chocolate drops- all vegan!

Quinoa mixed bean salad,healthy and delicious!


Gluten free carot cupcakes,chocolate chip cookies and quinoa mixed bean salad.

"sausage rolls",diabetic chocolate cake and chocolate chip cookies

2.11.11

World Vegan Day - Film Screening Report

Thanks to everyone who came to watch the film,we had 25 people attend and lots of great feedback afterwards. It seemed to make a great impression on all who saw it.
Before the film I (Ruth) gave a five minute talk to explain the other (beyond just health) reasons for veganism, the talk is below. We also had some fantastic information leaflets from the wonderful people at Vegan UK and some choice vegan society leaflets. After the film we had a great short speech from Emily who was has used the information in the Forks over Knives and Crazy Sexy Cancer books (both promote a wholefood plant based diet) to battle her stage 4 cancer with spectacular results.
                              Opening talk:

Hello and welcome to a film screening marking World Vegan Day. We hope Forks Over Knives will prove entertaining and offer up some interesting food for thought. It has hit the news recently with both Russell Brand and Ozzy Osbourne being inspired by it's message and adopting a plant based diet as a result. It should encourage the viewer to think above and beyond the bare minimum "five a day" requirement for fruit and vegetable portions, making an argument for their becoming the centre of a meal instead of an occasional side dish.

As I'm sure many of you already know, a vegan is a person who to the greatest extent possible seeks to avoid materials derived from other animals. We have placed vegan leafleture around the room and urge you to help yourself to those. Whilst the film today presents a message relevant to personal health there are many more reasons for veganism. The most compelling of which tend to be those of animal rights and environmental ethics.

Animal rights when taken to it's logical conclusion can oblige us to oppose the exploitation of other animals. The thinking goes that should a sentient being be seen as mere property then that property will inevitably be subject to any abuses their human owners choose to bestow upon them.

Be it the fate of the male calves left obsolete from the perpetual pregnancies of the dairy cows or the male hatchlings useless to the egg industry who are tossed into a shredding machine at birth. Why do we make beloved family members of dogs and eat the categorically more intelligent pig? Did you know it takes burning 150 silk worms to death, separating them from their silken cocoon, in order to make just one silk tie?

Most people oppose inflicting unnecessary suffering on an animal but with alternatives widely available to virtually every animal sourced food, nutrient or article of clothing can any of our use and abuse of animals truly be said to be necessary?

From the environmental perspective there is an ever deepening crisis in producing the food to supply an ever growing human population and the pressing need to avoid passing the crucial tipping point of runaway climate change which would again increasingly impact on the food problem. The United Nations published a report in 2006 called "Livestock's Long Shadow" in which they spelt out the numerous sustainability issues implicit to the farming of other animals.

80% of the amazon rain forest with all it's carbon storage capabilites is cleared for cattle farming and 80% of the soya grown on cleared land is transported and fed to farm animals around the world.  These cattle share the vast inefficiency of other livestock; needing to be fed a higher ratio of grain to produce diminishing returns as a food source themselves.

Climate change is also contributing to a crisis in providing clean sources of water, meanwhile animal agriculture requires and consumes vast quantities and pollutes more still with the run off and waste pollution implicit to the industry. Meanwhile cows produce vast quantities of methane, a global warming gas up to thirty times more potent than carbon dioxide.

The rearing of cows alone produces more global warming gases than all the world's use of transport combined; yep that includes all the planes, trains and automobiles. The University of Chicago concluded in a 2006 study that changing one's diet from the standard to a plant based one would be responsible for a greater reduction in a person's carbon footprint than switching from a standard family saloon to an efficient hybrid car.

There is also something to be said regarding the working conditions within slaughter houses and the links to mental illness and violence for those who are required to be render sentient beings as mere objects and operate as killers in the name of their society.

The film today first and foremost operates with a message that diet is not only an important part of a cure but is also key as a preventative measure in reducing the chances of falling ill in the first place. We are very glad to welcome Emily here today who at the end of the film would like to offer her personal testimony regarding the huge impact the Forks Over Knives message had on her in her battle against cancer and the impressive improvements she attributes to a plant based diet. So do hang around for that.

I'll also be available to take any questions, or just come over and say hello. We (VOLE) will gladly have discussions, attend events or distribute leaflets, so do get in touch. Again, please do help yourself to those leaflets for a read later on. Enjoy the film...

28.10.11

Food Co-op in Linco

 We have a food co-operative running that anyone can join. We will place an order with Lembas once the combined total reaches GBP150. To place an order email us with the item name, code, number of items and cost. We ask to be given the money before we place any order. Deliveries are on Tuesdays.

Lembas do a great variety of products in bulk and single, the cost of a lot of their bulk  products are cheaper than supermarkets this makes being vegan even cheaper.  They also do vegan dog and cat food: http://www.lembas.co.uk/

Feel free to email us with any questions or to place an order.

This is the co-operative facebook page: www.facebook.com/pages/Lincolns-Lembas-Food-Co-operative/229615017098036

Film Showing For World Vegan Day

Vegan Outreach East Midlands are pleased to present a Screening of the critically
acclaimed film "Forks Over Knives" for World Vegan Day.

The screening  will take place in:
Jackson Lecture Theatre - Tuesday 1st November, starting at 7pm

Admission FREE

Forks Over Knives examines the profound claim that most, if not all, of
the degenerative diseases that afflict us can be controlled, or even reversed, by
rejecting animal-based and processed foods. The major storyline in the film trace the personal journeys
of a pair of pioneering researchers, Dr. T. Colin Campbell and Dr. Caldwell Esselstyn.

"I'm now vegan, goodbye eggs... just watched "Forks Over Knives". Russell Brand

"My assistant showed me a video called Forks and Knives (sic) or something, about
(cutting out) meat and dairy products, so I thought, 'I'll give this a shot!'" Ozzy Osbourne

View trailer here:www.forksoverknives.com

Website:www.forksoverknives.com

All are welcome to this free screening - running time is 90 mins with a 5 minute talk on all the reasons (not just health) to become vegan at the begining, educational material avaliable and a chance to ask questions afterwards.

Further enquiries veganoutreacheastmidlands@gmail.com

26.10.11

PETA Advert in Australia

 PETA are at it again, totally misjudging a situation and doing more harm than good by releasing the above above advertisement at the site of a recent shark attack in Australia. 

 The ad implies that the 21 year old man  deserved the attack, because he was spearfishing when it happened. Thus adding some kind of grudge to the shark's actions when they are simply obligate, carnivorous hunters

 In the eyes of an already speciesist public the Jaws-style imagery serves only to further demonise sharks.  If there was said to be any war going on between humans and sharks, humans have certainly won long ago. We kill 73 million sharks a year (according to study in the respected scientific journal Ecology Letters), often but not only for the trade in shark fin soup, many others are left to dwindle in trawler nets or discarded as "bycatch." Unsurprisingly many species are facing extinction.


Ultimately PETA are being needlessly antagonistic, this is not going to make anyone receptive to the vegan message. They would surely be better off using their vast funds to partake in vegan education that promotes ceasing the exploitation of all animals, be they fish, shark, cow or any other non-human animal.

11.10.11

Henry Spira: One Man's Way. A "what not to do" film.

Just watched  "One Man's Way" about Henry Spira the animal rights advocate. He seemed a very nice, well meaning man but was sadly self defeatingly welfarist in his activities. As such this is a good film to watch as a "what not to do." I did however like his closing quote:

"I guess basically one wants to feel that one’s life has amounted to more than just consuming products and generating garbage. I think that one likes to look back and say that one’s done the best one can to make this a better place for others. You can look at it from this point of view: What greater motivation can there be than doing whatever one possibly can to reduce pain and suffering? "

Certainly a good sentiment but I would personally urge animal rights advocates to call for all animal exploitation to be ended via vegan education, rather than working with corporations to make things "slightly better".

Moral Schizophrenia Makes It to the Mainstream Media!

Now this is unusual, a mainstream article commenting on how there is huge cognitive dissonance at play when people partake in eating one animal and making a beloved family member of another. It's nice to see Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall coming to the logical conclusion that there is no moral difference between eating a dog or pig.
However in his own personal activities (Notably regarding over fishing of the seas) he sadly misses the point that eating no fish at is most sustainable and ethical of all. As with much welfarist reform his campaign actually served to increase fish consumption. The demand for the threatened fish stayed the same with his preferred species just being consumed in addition.
He also misses the point that all animal products are morally problematic as his experiment was as a vegetarian (Predictably tied in with an "In time for Xmas" vegetarian cook book) so Hugh still needlessly continued to contribute to animal suffering.

2.10.11

It's okay, I'm a vegetarian....

 In the last few months as we have been doing vegan education stalls one of the most common things to find is vegetarians coming over to us expecting us to pat them on the back and tell them how amazing, compassionate and wonderful they are for not eating meat (or in pescetarians' case for not eating land animals).

I'm sorry but we're not going to lie to you and pretend you are making any tangible difference, nor that you are doing your best to avoid exploiting animals, you are not. "But I eat free range eggs" I hear them cry and "I buy organic milk... sometimes". Exploitation is exploitation, no matter how "nicely" you do it. To borrow an analogy from Gary L Francione, hitting your spouse only on a Sunday but being nice to him/her before and after is still violence! By changing the circumstances in which we use them just changes the type of suffering. It doesn't matter whether a chicken is given an extra inch of cage space, what matters is that the chicken is in a cage at all.

People have long been wrongly led by large animal welfare groups to believe that vegetarianism and veganism are two sides of the same coin, they are not. Vegetarians (especially long-term ones) often become entrenched in the belief that they are doing all they can and have met their moral obligations towards other animals. Again I blame this on large charities telling them they're doing the right thing. I see nothing wrong however in people who pass through vegetarianism as they transition to a vegan diet. That's how Ruth personally became vegan.

However this does not mean that giving out vegetarian educational material is morally a good idea. It's like knowing that slavery is wrong and should be abolished but promoting "nice" slavery (you know the type where you only beat them if they do something REALLY bad and they get every 4th Sunday morning off). In fact in many cases a vegetarian diet high in dairy and eggs could be said to have a higher net cruelty than that of a standard omnivore.

So what can you do if you do come across such a vegetarian? Simple, do what we do and engage them on why you are vegan. Ask them why they're vegetarian? For the animals? Direct them to information on the obsolete male calves produced by dairy and the "useless" male chicks produced by the egg industry etc. For the environment? Direct them to information on the environmental impact of farming cows and destructive inefficencies of feeding grain to livestock. For people? Direct them to data on mental health and violent behaviour in slaughterhouse workers.

Most importantly remember that the biggest argument for veganism is the ethical one; that other animals are simply not ours to use and abuse. If someone opposes inflicting unnecessary suffering on an animal then they better make one hell of a case for why animal products are in any way necessary?

Finally having food at stalls helps, especially cupcakes/other goodies as it shows what good vegan food is available, that you can still eat "comfort foods" and that being vegan is not about "sacrificing" anything, especially taste. Have a look at our recipe pages for recipes that we have found to be popular as it really (ahem) "sweetens" the pill.

1.10.11

Recipe: The best "cheese" sauce ever

Found this recipe the other day and made it last week, we ended up having it two days in a row it was that good.

INGREDIENTS:
1-1/4 C raw cashews
1/2 C nutritional yeast
2 tsp onion powder
1 to 2 tsp salt, to taste
1 tsp garlic powder
1/8 tsp white pepper
3-1/2 C nondairy milk
3 Tbs cornstarch
1/2 C oil
1/4 C light (yellow or white) miso
2 Tbs lemon juice
DIRECTIONS:
Place cashews in a large-sized bowl of the food processor and finely grind–just don’t let the cashews turn to a paste. Add nutritional yeast, onion powder, salt, garlic powder, and white pepper. Pulse three more times to blend in spices.
In a heavy saucepan, combine milk, cornstarch and oil(s). Bring to a simmer over high heat. Decrease heat to low-medium, cover and simmer, stirring occasionally for 10 minutes, or until cornstarch dissolves.
With the food processor running, gradually add milk/oil mixture to cashew/nutritional yeast mixture. Blend for 2 minutes or until smooth and creamy. Next blend in miso and lemon juice.

Put on top of anything, pasta, veg etc etc

The Second Issue of the Abolitionist

The second issue of The Abolitionist, an online free magazine put out by Vegan UK has now been published. It has some fantastic articles and really is worth a read.

http://www.theabolitionist.info/

27.9.11

Abolitionism in a Nutshell

I'm reposting something from a great website, The Abolitionist Approach: http://www.abolitionistapproach.com/

As long as we think the issue is the treatment of animals, we will seek to make that treatment more “humane.” But because animals are property, that goal is unreachable as a practical matter. The treatment of animals will always constitute torture under the most “humane” circumstances. And the “treatment” (or welfarist) approach ignores that it is morally wrong to kill animals even if we treat them “humanely,” which we cannot do anyway. Welfare “reforms” not only fail to provide any significant protection for animals; such reforms actually make matters worse because they encourage the public to feel more comfortable about animal exploitation and to continue to consume animals and animal products. The problem is use, not treatment. The goal is to abolish animal use, not to regulate treatment. The means to the goal? Go vegan and educate others about veganism.

Pigs Die on the Way to Slaughter

The comments underneath this article again serve to show the moral schizophrenia of Britain when it comes to animals. These pigs were on the way to be slaughtered, this is merely the face of standard pig farming, 180 packed into a lorry. It's awful they died but they were on the way to be killed. To get outraged and upset about this whilst still consuming animal products makes no sense whatsoever.

www.thisislincolnshire.co.uk/UPDATE-50-pigs-killed-lorry-overturns/story-13405613-detail/story.htm

Ban Fur? Then Why Not Leather?

This is an interesting debate about whether a ban on selling fur in West Hollywood is significant in a wider animal rights context. Why ban fur and still sell leather? It seems to be that fur is seen as a less justifiable use of animals than leather or wool, why should this be the case? 

http://www.nytimes.com/roomfordebate/2011/09/25/ban-fur-then-why-not-leather

26.9.11

After Bransby

Had a successful day of vegan outreach at Bransby Home of Rest for Horses, giving out lots of leaflets, having conversations and selling cupcakes and other goodies. Because of this we will be making donations to the oceans-protecting work of The Sea Shepherd http://www.seashepherd.org/ and to the listener supported, vegan radio show, Go vegan with Bob Linden http://www.goveganradio.com/. All leftover cupcakes and other goodies have gone to feeding homeless people at The Nomad Trust http://www.nomadtrust.org.uk/.

Flapjacks,Chocolate Chip Cookies,Tiffin and Cupcakes

Francione Literature on the Wall

Not keen on "meat free for under a fiver" as it makes a false distinction between meat and other animal products, however it contains all vegan content. Next time we shall have literature from our friends at Vegan UK.

19.9.11

Our first event! Skillshare @ The Jolly Brewer

Cupcakes, cookies and caramel slices

Lots of vegan info

More vegan info

The stall all set out ready to go

Recipes for converting the most strident omnivore


Carrot Cake
ingredients:
250g (10 oz) self raising flour
1tsp baking powder
4tsp ground cinnamon
2tsp grated nutmeg
100g (4 oz) vegetable margarine (I use Vitalite)
100g (4 oz) sugar
100g (4 oz) agave syrup or golden syrup
250g (10 oz) grated carrot
1/2 cup coconut milk or soya milk
Instructions
1) Melt margarine, sugar and syrup over a low heat. Stir, and take off the heat.
2) Put flour, baking powder and spices into a bowl and pour sugar mixture and milk on top.
3) Stir well and then add the grated carrots.
4) Line the base of a 2lb loaf tin with greaseproof paper or baking parchment. I have also used this recipe for  cupcakes and it works a treat. Just cook at 180 for 30mins or until a toothpick comes out clean.
5) Bake for about 1 hour and 15 minutes (140ºC/275ºF) until golden brown and when tested with a cake tester or skewer it comes out clean.

Gluten Free Chocolate Cup Cakes

Ingredients
250g/8 ozs granulated sugar
250g/8ozs Gluten Free SR Flour
25g/1oz soya flour
25g/1oz Cocoa Powder
125g/4 ozs vegan margarine
2 tablespoons golden syrup
300ml/1/2 pint soya milk
1 heaped teaspoon gluten free baking powder
A few drops of vanilla essence
1 banana
4 tablespoons cold water

Instructions
1. Heat oven to Electric 180°C/350°F/Gas Mark 4

2. Put sugar, SR flour, soya flour and cocoa powder into a bowl and mix well.

3. Take 6 tablespoons of milk from the measured amount and put into a bowl with 1 heaped teaspoon of baking powder and mix.

4. Put margarine, golden syrup and milk into a saucepan and heat until margarine is melted.

5. Mash the banana till smooth and whisk in 4 tablespoons of water until frothy.

6. Add the golden syrup mixture to the dry ingredients along with the milk and baking powder mixture, a few drops of vanilla essence and beaten banana.  Mix well until smooth and lump free.  You can do this by hand or use a mixer.

7. Place muffin cases into muffin tins and spoon the mixture into muffin cases, approximately half fill them.

8. Bake for 10 minutes then reduce heat to 160°C/300°F/Gas Mark 3 for a further 10 minutes until risen and when tested with a skewer or cake tester it comes out clean.

Allow to get cold before icing with vegan butter icing – add a little cocoa powder and sprinkle with grated chocolate for a luxury topping.

Bransby Home for Horses (yes again!)

Apologies for the delay but we're back and just in time to announce we will be spreading the vegan, abolitionist, non-violent message at the Bransby Home for Horses open day on Sunday (that's the 25th). We will be selling lots of tasty treats from four types of cupcakes to tiffin and cookies. We will have gluten free options avaliable so everyone gets to try vegan goodies. We will even have homemade cruelty free dog biscuits. So come along and see us if you can...

5.6.11

Bransby Home of Rest for Horses

Bransby Home of Rest for Horses had their open day today, in the future we hope to be there selling our vegan goodies, their next open day is in September. It's a nice change after yesterday's derby to see retired and rescued Horses and Donkeys.

 It was however an example of how one issue, non-vegan animal charities can do more harm than good for animals overall. There were people selling "pet food" made from one slaughtered animal to feed to another...dont care so much about them then? There was meat and dairy on sale, hot dog vans to ice-cream trucks, again for an animal charity the hypocrisy of it all is so obvious and very sad.  This doesnt mean we should avoid these events necessarily, rather we can get involved and try to open other minds to the inconsistent morality society has regarding other animals and go some way to redress the balance.

http://www.bransbyhorses.co.uk/
If you are not vegan, go vegan. It’s easy; it’s better for your health and for the planet. But, most important, it’s the morally right thing to do. If you are vegan, educate everyone you can about veganism.- Gary Francione