News – April 2008
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Table of Contents
- IVU Future: Updates from the IVU World Vegetarian Congress
- IVU Present: Interview with President, Jewish Vegetarians of N. America
- IVU Past: Tasty New History Morsels on Nearing, Kahler, & McCartney
- Bold Flavors for Winning Over Meateaters
- Upcoming Events
- Vegetarian Chef Sought for Global Youth Village
- UN General Secretary on the New Face of Hunger
- Teaching Children What To Say About Why They Are Veg
- Novel from Veg Cookery Writer
- Guide for Animal Activists
- Other Electronic News Sources
- Welcome to Organisations That Have Recently Registered with IVU
- Please Write for IVU Online News
IVU Future: Updates from the IVU World Vegetarian Congress
Here’s an update from the organisers of the 100th anniversary IVU World Vegetarian Congress to be held 27 Jul-3 Aug in Dresden, Germany
Time is running now, and there are only four months until the congress. We as organisers are really excited and very busy working to make it a wonderful congress.
We have about 400 people registered so far, but the venue in Dresden’s beautiful historic square is big enough for twice that many. Don't miss this unique event: the centenary of IVU and World Vegetarian Congresses. We are very much looking forward to seeing you in Dresden. Please send your registration now: www.ivu.org/congress/2008/registration.html
Societies who would like to have a stall during the Congress should inform the organisers soon, because there is not much room left. Also, because of (new) fire protection rules, we are not allowed to bring our own tables or chairs; we have to rent them from the venue. Tables are 140x70cm or 70x70 cm. Tables (it does not matter which size) or chairs cost 5 EUR per day.
Finally, I would like to ask the congress participants from foreign countries to send us their contributions for the first evening (Monday), the "Talent Night".
Vegetarier-Bund Deutschlands e.V. (VEBU)
Contact: 38th World Vegetarian Congress 2008, Dresden:
European Vegetarian Union - Treasurer;
IVU liaison officer for Europe
IVU Presents: Interview with President, Jewish Vegetarians of N. America
Previously in this space, IVU regional coordinators from various parts of the world were interviewed. Now, we begin a series of interviews with leaders of various veg organisation. The first person to volunteer was Professor Richard Schwartz, president of Jewish Vegetarians of North America.
1. What made you decide to become a vegetarian? When did that happen? How old were you at the time?
In 1975, I began teaching a course, "Mathematics and the Environment" at the College of Staten Island, which relates basic mathematical concepts to current environmental issues. While reviewing material related to world hunger, I became aware of the tremendous waste of grain associated with the production of beef. In spite of my own eating habits, I often led class discussions on the possibility of reducing meat consumption as a way of helping hungry people. After several semesters of this, I took my own advice and gave up eating red meat, while continuing to eat chicken and fish. I then began to read about the many health benefits of vegetarianism and about the horrible conditions for animals raised on factory farms. I was increasingly attracted to vegetarianism, and on January 1, 1978, at the age of 44, I decided to join the International Jewish Vegetarian Society as a vegetarian.
2. You are a leader of a member society of IVU. How long have you been
a leader of this organisation?
I have been president of the Jewish Vegetarians of North America (JVNA) since 2003, but I edited the JVNA newsletter and played a leadership role for many years before that.
3. What made you decide to become active in promoting vegetarianism?
I decided to become active in promoting vegetarianism after recognizing that:
- animal-based diets violate basic Jewish mandates to treat animals with compassion, preserve our health, protect the environment, conserve natural resources, help hungry people and pursue peace;
- a shift toward vegetarianism is a societal imperative because of the many negative health and environmental effects of animal-centered diets and agriculture.
- most people are oblivious of dietary-related realities and have many misconceptions.
4. What obstacles do you face in remaining active in promoting vegetarianism? How do you overcome them?
The main obstacles are apathy, ignorance and denial. Unfortunately, it is very difficult to overcome them generally. Some approaches I use are talks, letters to editors, articles and personal conversations. I try to stress that vegetarianism is not just a personal decision, but also a societal imperative because the production of meat and other animal products has so many negative environmental effects.
Also, our highly acclaimed documentary “A SACRED DUTY” (about Judaism and the environment) has the possibility of breaking through barriers.
5. What is one of your organisation's accomplishments that makes you especially proud?
The production of “A SACRED DUTY.” I am very proud to be the associate producer and to have arranged all the interviews for the movie and to have been involved in important decisions re the final script. We were extremely fortunate to have Lionel Friedberg, a multi-award winning producer/director/writer/cinematographer, who produced the movie as a labor of love and dedication, while accepting no professional fee. Thankfully, the movie has been receiving a very favorable response from both Jews and non-Jews. There is more information about the movie and it can be seen in its entirety at ASacredDuty.com
6. How do you try to maintain good relations and enthusiasm amongst your organisation's members?
I have a JVNA advisory committee of over 50 people, with a wide variety of backgrounds, interests and experiences, and I seek suggestions from them before taking any actions. I also send out JVNA newsletters to members generally once a week to keep them up to date. I always seek suggestions from members, and I try to respond quickly to all email messages that I receive.
7. What is one way that your organisation cooperates with other veg organisations?
In addition to being president of JVNA, I am also president of the Society of Ethical and Religious Vegetarians (SERV) and a Councilor for the Vegetarian Union of North America (VUNA). I share articles, ideas and initiatives among these groups, so there is cross fertilization.
8. How does your organisation reach out to people who are trying to become veg or who are newly veg?
- We have a web site (JewishVeg.com) which has much background material on connections between Judaism and vegetarianism and much more, including recipes.
- We send out a generally weekly newsletter to keep people informed and interested.
- We have leaflets, booklets and CDs, besides the DVD and book mentioned above, that we use to reach out to and inform people.
IVU Past: Tasty New History Morsels on Nearing, Kahler, & McCartney
IVU historian, John Davis, continues to update the history files on our website. Among the new materials are extracts from three books that talk about famous names in IVU history.
1. Scott and Helen Nearing
- 1883 - Scott was born, Helen was a few years younger and a life
vegetarian, daughter of theosophists.
- 1970 - The Good Life was re-published, by a bigger publisher and became a
- 1982 - Scott retired from the IVU International Council after
23 years, age 99.
- 1983 - Scott died, age 100. Helen continued writing more books.
- 1995 - Helen died in a car crash, age 91.
see: www.ivu.org/members/council/scott-nearing.html - with links to
Scott's talks, some extracts from The Good Life and obituaries for both.
2. Woodland Kahler - President of IVU, 1960-71
The new info online is from 'Olga - the memoirs of Olga La Marquise de St.
Innocent' published in 1974. 'Woody' was Olga's 4th husband and the book
gives some fascinating insights.
Olga was born into the Russian aristocracy and escaped the 1917 revolution
by taking a train, with her 2nd husband, through Siberia to China, Japan and
across to California - with her precious jewels sewn into a belt.
Woodland Kahler was a struggling young American writer when he met Olga in
Paris in the 1930s. He became her 4th husband in 1932, and went on to become
a best-selling novelist. They both turned vegetarian in 1948 and were soon
involved with IVU - joining the Nearings at both the American Convention in
1949 and the IVU Congress in Sweden 1953. The Kahlers played a major role in
the 1955 IVU Congress in Paris, where they were living, and he was IVU
President through the 1960s.
see www.ivu.org/members/council/woodland-kahler.html - with links to
various articles, including some extracts from Olga's book at the top. That
in turn links to more extracts about their meetings with the Dalai Lama,
Albert Schweitzer etc.
3. Linda McCartney
Some extracts from a biography by Danny Fields, published in 2000, giving
some insights into how she and Paul became vegetarian, and the beginnings of
the food products etc.
Bold Flavors for Winning Over Meateaters
Last month, Chef Jason Wyrick wrote about how to effectively serve non-vegetarians, and one of the key points of that article was choosing bold flavors. This month’s instalment continues with a discussion of what bold flavor are and how to achieve them in order to get your meat eating friends coming back for more.
First, let’s talk about what bold flavors aren’t. Boiled squash served over rice. Steamed veggies dressed in tamari. Not bold. Not fun. Not even close. I’m vegan and if you served me that, I’d have words with you. Now, consider seared chayote squash with a mango chili lime sauce over toasted sesame rice and roasted potatoes and garlic with a lemon ginger tamari glaze. Bold, fun, creative, and most importantly, appetizing for meat-eaters and vegetarians alike.
What’s the difference between the menus? You’ve probably guessed it by now. Bold flavors. How does one achieve boldness in flavor? First, go for depth. Let’s face it, meat is a strong, darkly flavored, heavy ingredient and your food will be competing with that. You’ll need a level of depth frequently missing in vegetarian fare. Sundried tomatoes, because their flavors have been intensified through the drying process and their sugars have been slightly caramelized, have a deeper flavor than fresh tomatoes. Toasted sesame seeds and toasted sesame oil have a darker flavor than plain sesame seeds and oil. Look for ingredients like these and let your imagination go wild.
Another way to add boldness to your meal lies in the preparation. Seared will create a stronger flavor than steamed. Roasted creates a deeper flavor than boiled. Caramelized is more flavorful than slightly sautéed. Grilled brings forth an intensity not typically found in baked food. From a heath standpoint, I figure when serving meat-eaters, it's ok to throw in smoked foods, heated oils, etc. because it's still healthier than meat and keeps them from going into culinary culture shock. Many of my students are meat eaters, and after a while, they transition to healthier foods. I used to only do optimized healthy cuisine, but I wasn't able to help as many people that way.
Finally, choose ingredients that simply can’t be ignored. These are flavors that scream forth from the food, “I am here!” Spicy chili peppers are a perfect example (though be careful with your more “delicate” diners). Mangoes are a rich fruit, and citrus cuts through most flavors. Ginger and garlic are particularly strong ingredients, as are basil, pine nuts, thyme, oregano, toasted cumin seeds, cloves, allspice, fenugreek, and fresh black peppercorns. Note, organic and in-season ingredients simply taste better than their counterparts. These ingredients achieve boldness by featuring their fresh, unadulterated flavors.
See www.veganculinaryexperience.com/IVURecipes.htm for recipes and techniques, Eat healthy, eat compassionately, and eat well!
Chef Jason Wyrick is the editor and executive chef of The Vegan Culinary Experience (www.veganculinaryexperience.com), a free vegan culinary magazine designed by professional vegan chefs. He operates a successful vegan catering and culinary instruction company in the United States and has taught alongside doctors Neal Barnard, John McDougall, and Gabriel Cousens and is the first vegan instructor to teach in the Le Cordon Bleu program. You can reach Chef Wyrick at ChefJason@veganculinaryexperience.com.
1. First Veggie Pride Parade in America
The First Veggie Pride Parade in the US will take place in Greenwich
Village, New York City, on May 18: www.veggieprideparade.org
Parade participants are encouraged to dress up in costumes and to wear sign boards announcing their pride in their vegetarian lifestyle. Local restaurants will represent themselves with banners. And otherwise, contingents from all walks of life are encouraged to get involved. The parade culminates with a festival of music, speakers, and exhibitors. Plus, the winners of a costume and poster-slogan contest in various categories will be announced.
Also on stage will be a 7-foot-tall human pea pod, Penelo Pea Pod (long-time mascot of parade sponsor VivaVegie Society). Penelo Pea will be married at the event in an open wedding ceremony. The lucky guy (ur, animal? vegetable?) has yet to be identified.
The parade is fashioned after, and will take place the same weekend as, the Veggie Pride Parade in Paris. The Parisian parade was the first of its kind ever to take place in the world and has been going on annually since 2001.
2. UK National Vegetarian Week
The UK Vegetarian Society holds its annual National Vegetarian Week May 19-25: www.vegsoc.org/nvw
The event features something for everyone, including a form for people to pledge to go veg during the week. It’s impressive to see how our UK colleagues have organised this large scale event.
3. Distance Learning Paper on Animals and Society
“Animals and Society” is a new distance learning paper that will be available through Massey University in New Zealand from July 2008. The course explores relationships between animals and human societies historically and contemporarily. The paper considers ways in which social, political, economic and cultural relationships, institutions and dynamics have shaped and have been shaped by the human - animal configuration. Topics include:
- animals in 'hunter-gatherer' societies
- the domestication of animals
- the impact of the transition to modernity on animals
- animals in research
- companion animals
- spectacle, sport and entertainment
- animal lore
- animals and film
- the animal welfare movement
- animal rights.
Students will be encouraged to develop a critical understanding of the extent to which relationships between animals and human societies have changed across time and space, develop an understanding of the significance of non-human animals for human societies, and engage critically with scholarly literature about different dimensions of the animal-human relationship. In 2008 the paper will be available at 100 level. In subsequent years the paper will be available at 200 level. The paper is taught by Associate Professor Peter Beatson, Professor Kevin Stafford, and Dr. Mary Murray. Mary is the course coordinator and if you would like further information about the paper you can contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org
Vegetarian Chef Sought for Global Youth Village
The Global Youth Village is an international summer camp exchange program for students 13-18 years of age: www.globalyouthvillage.org Their goal is to promote respect as a standard for human interaction. Program activities help participants discover a common ground for understanding people of diverse cultures and backgrounds, by encouraging core human values such as peace, justice, tolerance, ethics, service, and equity.
The Village is seeking an experienced cook or chef who is inspired by the goals and philosophy of the program. This person manages overall meal production and works with prep cooks while preparing entrees, soups, sauces, baked goods and desserts. For details: email@example.com
UN General Secretary on the New Face of Hunger
Here’s an article by the UN General Secretary, Ban Ki-moon, on the worsening situation with world hunger: The new face of hunger www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2008/03/11/AR2008031102462.html
What the General Secretary doesn’t mention and what many people don’t realize is that meat production is a major waste of food. Why? Because much of the food we grow goes to feed the animals whom humans eat: www.goveg.com/worldhunger.asp
Teaching Children What To Say About Why They Are Veg
Here’s a story that poses a dilemma for people raising veg kids.
Kai, my 4yr-old son, goes back and forth between being sort of proud about our vegetarianism, then being embarrassed by it. I predict this is something that will happen until he is an adult. At Christmas, when we showed up at my grandmother's house, the very first thing he did upon entering the house was to very loudly declare to everyone there, "We don't eat chicken, cause that's yucky!" It was so embarrassing, and, of course, my grandmother didn't appreciate it.
But then a couple weeks ago, his preschool teacher told me he was announcing to all his friends at school that he eats chicken nuggets for dinner every night! And when they told him, "I don't think so because you are vegetarian", he vehemently insisted that he had indeed eaten chicken.
I'm always perplexed about how to address the reason "why" we don't eat animals. Everyone else in my family eats meat. So, of course, I can't relate being veg to respecting animals, because then Kai will assume that the rest of our family doesn't respect animals because they eat meat.
A few nights ago, we were with a friend who was eating chicken, and Kai wouldn't stop telling her how disgusting that was. I could have died! So, I try to just make it simple and say, "we just don't like it". But he's too smart for that and will question me and want to challenge me on that point.
Novel from Veg Cookery Writer
Jan Hunt, a vegetarian cookery writer, has just brought out a novel written, under the name Jan Mazzoni, titled The Snow Fox Diaries. The novel sends a subtle message about the relationship humans have with our fellow animals
Guide for Animal Activists
Striking at the Roots is a guide to action for animals.
Read a review at
Other Electronic News Sources
For those of you who like their veg news via electronic newsletter, here are a few other places to get your regular dose of electronic news. If you have other free electronic newsletters to recommend, pls let us know.
- Newsletter of the European Vegetarian Union www.euroveg.eu/lang/en/news/newsletter.php
- VegE-News does a general version with readers from all over the world, as well as customized versions for the Alberta, Toronto, Winnipeg and Australian vegetarian associations with a listing of their events. www.lholmesassociates.com/newsletters/veg/html
- AnimalConcerns.org doesn't have a newsletter, but they post stories daily at www.animalconcerns.org/categories.html?do=shownews
- Dawn Watch keeps an eye on important stories: www.dawnwatch.com/alerts.htm
- Last but not least, you can subscribe to IVU-Veg-News, which provides a mechanism for the exchange of news and information pertaining to vegetarianism and may be considered to be a public news wire
Plus, IVU has electronic lists for various regions around the world. Go to www.ivu.org/onlinenews.php and scroll down to find the list that caters to your area.
Welcome to Organisations That Have Recently Registered with IVU
GreenLand Vegetarian Cafe, Guangzhou, China - www.greenlanders.com.cn
Prasád - restaurace pro zdraví - www.prasad.cz
Association Végétarienne de France - www.vegetarisme.fr
Deviate Animal friendly footwear and accessories - deviate.net.nz
Kaimanga Lodge - www.kaimanga.co.nz
animalssafety.org - Animals Safety Organization, Pakistan - www.animalssafety.org
Vegan Health and Beauty - www.veganhealthandbeauty.com
bostonveggie.com - The Vegetarian's Guide to Dining in Boston - www.bostonveggie.com
Fairgrounds Coffeehouse and Eatery - www.fairgroundscoffeehouse.com
Gomez, Vegan-Vegetarian Cuisine! - 360.yahoo.com/my_profile-DfrkU1M8dKhTeSpdCQAPLDYf
Kindness Not Cruelty - kindnessnotcruelty.co.nr
OrganicBabyPlus.com - OrganicBabyPlus.com
Selfruled Fitness - selfruledfitness.blogspot.com
Spread Kindness - spreadkindness.net
Vegan Soapbox - www.vegansoapbox.com
Vertical Diner, Salt Lake City - verticaldiner.com
World Peace Cafe - www.worldpeacecafeatlanta.com
Zen Burger - www.zenburger.com
Please Write For IVU News
Dear Veg Activist
Please use this newsletter as a way to share your knowledge, ideas and experiences with fellow veg activists.
Thx. -–george jacobs – firstname.lastname@example.org
IVU Online News is non-copyright. Readers are encouraged to share the contents elsewhere. If you do so, please consider including a link to www.ivu.org/news
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