International Vegetarian Union (IVU)
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IVU Online News January 2008
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Table of Contents

  1. Report from West Africa Vegetarian Congress
  2. Interview with IVU Regional Coordinator for East/SE Asia and Oceania
  3. Report from Argentina Vegetarian Union Congress
  4. Another Major Addition to the IVU Website
  5. IVU at the All India Kannada Literary Conference
  6. Dresden Discount Deadline Draws Near
  7. Welcome To New IVU Member Organizations and Supporters
  8. Upcoming Events
  9. Changes in Attitudes in Asia Too
  10. Study: Kids Will Eat Healthier School Food
  11. Veg Friendly Books for Children and Parents
  12. Research Updates
  13. Welcome to Organizations Recently Registered with IVU
  14. Please Write for IVU News

Report from West Africa Vegetarian Congress
Here are excerpts from a report from the recent West Africa Vegetarian Congress, which was partly funded by IVU and by your donations in response to an appeal by IVU. Photos can be viewed at ;

The W/Africa Vegetarian Congress in Lagos, Nigeria has come and gone. The congress was very significant, as it is marked the beginning of creating a future for the vegetarian movement for Africa. The congress drew participants from West Africa and beyond. Talks were given on various aspects of the vegetarian way of life. Many of the participants said that the highlight of the Congress was the feeding of vegan food to people at a village set up to aid destitute children, lepers, disabled and elderly.

I wish to thank the IVU Council for supporting the Congress, all the IVU-Africa members that participated and all the individuals and groups within and outside Nigeria for taking part in the congress.

With warm regards,
Emmanuel Eyoh, Nigeria Vegetarian Society
Convener-W/Africa Vegetarian Congress

Interview with IVU Regional Coordinator for East/SE Asia and Oceania
This interview, with Susianto Tseng - - is the third in a series of interviews with IVU representatives in various parts of the world. To find the contact information for the representative in your part of the world, visit

1. Hi, Susianto. You are the IVU Regional Coordinator (RC) for East/Southeast Asia and Oceania. How were you involved in vegetarianism before that?

I’m a chemist by training. I became a vegetarian in 1988 during my university times, when I studied food science and saw a lot of diseases associated with meat eating. When I switched to a veg diet, I started feeling healthier. Previously, my mother and grandmother used to eat vegetarian twice a month for religious reasons, and when I became vegetarian, my mother followed me to become a full-time vegetarian. 

After 10 years, in 1998, some of my vegetarian friends and I saw that although we knew many vegetarians in Indonesia, we vegetarians didn’t have any way to get together and empower each other. To rectify this situation, we had our first meeting near an organic farm outside Jakarta in 1998, and we joined IVU.

2. When and how did you learn about IVU?

In 1998, via a web search.

3. Currently, you are doing an M.S. in Nutrition. Please tell us a little about your thesis research.

The research investigates the nutritional status of vegetarian children in Indonesia. Some people believe that vegetarianism isn’t appropriate for children; they believe that children need to consume animal flesh in order to develop properly. My study was designed to explore this issue.

Participants in study were 281 children from 14 Indonesian cities who were veg from birth. The children were between three months and 8 yrs old.

According to the WHO standards for weight for age, height for age and weight for height, scores between -2 and +2 are good. 87% of the children in the study were found to be -2 or above, i.e., of good nutrition status. Those children with scores below -2 came from poor families in rural areas. I plan to follow-up this study in my doctoral research.

4. Do you do your RC work full-time, or do you have a regular job, too?

Yes, I have a regular job as Country Manager for a chemical and life science instrumentation company. Also, I am Chief Operational Officer of IVS (Indonesia Vegetarian Society):

5. Please say a bit about IVS.

IVS has 20,000 life members, who pay a membership fee of about US$1.5. In return, they receive a membership card which entitles them to discounts at veg restaurants, plus computer shops and other businesses. They are also entitled to informational materials on veg, including a veg starter kit, plus a VCD and vouchers. There are also another 40,000 people who have registered with IVS and are in our database. We are particularly proud of our blood donation service which helps vegetarians receive blood from fellow vegetarians, should the need arise.

6. Please share a vegetarian joke with us.

Sure, but to understand this joke, you have to know that in Indonesian, the word for earlobe is "daun telinga".  Daun literally means leaf. Telinga is ear. 

A non-veg boasts, “I can eat anything with 4 legs, except a table. Anything that flies I can eat except an airplane. And, I can eat anything that swims, except a submarine.” A veg replies, “Big deal. I can eat any leaf except the outer ear.“

Report from Argentina Vegetarian Union Congress
Below are excerpts from a report from our friends in Argentina.
On 10 Nov, UVA (Argentina Vegetarian Union) held the 4th Vegetarian Congress at the Interamerican Open University in Buenos Aires. This year, the slogan of the Congress was "Save the Planet, Change your Diet", and we highlighted the urgent need for taking the necessary measures to stop the climatic changes, vegetarianism being the most powerful tool in the hands of humanity for achieving that goal.
We invited several speakers, including Mrs Kaplan, representing Supreme Master Ching Hai; Mrs Assaf, who showed us the importance of a healthy diet and fasting with fruits and vegetables; Prof. Urdiales, who, next January, will lead a 10-day seminar on permaculture; Mrs Ricetti, an urban farmer, who showed us how cattle ranching affects the global climate; Lic. Grinberg, who discussed "responsible consumption"; Mr Bianco, a well known naturo-therapist, who shared with the audience about keeping in good health; and Dr Capobianco, who spoke with great sensibility on animal rights and abolitionist concepts.

We also remembered Dr Delio Esteve, who passed away last June 14.

During the Congress, various stands offered information, food, handcrafts, books, pins, T-shirts and magazines. The Congress participants were most enthusiastic and expressed their satisfaction at the end of the day.

Another Major Addition to the IVU Website
This report is courtesy of IVU historian John Davis.

In 1975, the first IVU World Veg Congress to be held in North America convened at the University of Maine, at Orono. American historians have stated: "Arguably it was the most important gathering of vegetarians in the United States in the twentieth century."

The Congress attracted 1,500 participants, with up to 25 simultaneous lectures, activities and tours. It is seen as having kick-started the organized vegetarian movement in North America.

A couple of months ago, I was at Parkdale (VSUK HQ) where I was given a very
large, thickly-stuffed, envelope that had been found in the cellar. It was strongly bound in tape, and simply marked 'IVU Congress 1975'. It soon became apparent that this had been sealed soon after the Congress by someone who had been there in person, and left untouched for the next 32 years.

The contents included four complete original copies of Vegetarian Voice (NAVS journal), starting with Vol 1, #2 (March 1974) - up to the late 1975 issue, which was devoted entirely to reviews and photos of the Congress. There also copies of articles from other journals, such as Ahimsa (American VeganSoc), and press reports from the New York Times, Washington Post, etc. In addition, there was a large quantity of correspondence between NAVS and IVU about the planning of the event, and a couple of texts of talks that were given, including the IVU president's personal copy of his opening address.

Almost all of this is now on the IVU website at


IVU at the All India Kannada Literary Conference

Shankar Narayan, IVU Regional Co-ordinator for India & West Asia, used IVU funds to organize IVU participation at the recent All India Kannada Literary Conference. For photos:

Dresden Discount Deadline Draws Near
Jan 31 is the next deadline for early booking discounts for the 100th anniversary IVU World Vegetarian Congress to be held 27 Jul – 3 Aug 2008 in Dresden, Germany. After Jan 31, the congress fee will be 160 EUR instead of 140 EUR:

Welcome To New IVU Member Organizations and Supporters


Chong Hua Vegetarian Union (Taiwan) -

Serenity Spaces (USA) -


Uppunda Venkataramana Bhat, Bangalore, India (Patron)

Full membership in IVU is open to any organisation whose primary purpose is to promote vegetarianism/veganism. Associate membership is open to any organization which advocates vegetarianism. Any business or individual  is welcome to be a supporter of IVU. Please see for details.

1. The 2008 Raw Lifestyle Film Festival

Mar 21-23, 2008 - West Hollywood, California

Inviting vegetarian, vegan or raw vegan filmmakers or others who have produced films that fall within the Auxiliary Category to submit their films to the second annual Raw Lifestyle Film Festival in Los Angeles in 2008.

2. AR2008 Conference

August 14-18, 2008 - Washington, DC

The Animal Rights 2008 National Conference will be held August 14-18 at the Hilton Mark Center in Alexandria, VA, a Washington, DC suburb.

The 2008 program will offer a number of new features, including plenary presentations by prominent leaders of the consumer, environmental, and social justice movements, and presidential candidate Dennis Kucinich.

Contact:  /
Tel: 1-888-FARM-USA (327-6872)

3. International Vegan Festival

July, 2009 - Rio de Janeiro

More information available soon. Contact Marly Winkler, IVU RC for Latin America:

Changes in Attitudes in Asia Too
It isn’t just in the West that attitudes towards our fellow animals are becoming more ‘humane’.

TAIPEI (Reuters) - Taiwan legislators passed a law that calls for fines of up to $250,000 (3,825 pounds) on sellers of dog meat, a winter staple once popular in military units, as part of a broader animal rights push, newspapers reported on Saturday.

Under growing pressure from animal rights groups concerned about cruelty to pets and government inaction, parliament on Friday approved the fines as part of its Animal Protection Act, according to media and a supportive legislator.

"We think eating dog is a brutal act," said legislator Chang Hsien-yao, policy director with People First Party. "Animal abuse cases have sparked concern from rights groups, and protection of animals hasn't been done adequately."

Dog, sometimes called "fragrant meat", seldom appears on menus in Taiwan, but people in some areas of the island eat canines in the winter to improve body warmth and blood circulation.

full story:

Study: Kids Will Eat Healthier School Food

A study reported in the December 2007 issue of the Review of Agricultural Economics analyzed five years of data for 330 Minnesota (USA) public school districts. It looked at compliance with US government standards for calories, nutrients and fats. When the researchers crunched all the numbers, they found that schools serving the healthiest lunches did not see a falloff in demand. We might want to remember this study the next time someone says that kids will only eat junk food, but it should be noted that the food in the study wasn’t veg.
If you’re involved in an effort to improve the healthfulness, kindness and environmental friendliness of school food, please share your ideas and experiences via IVU Online News.

Veg Friendly Books for Children and Parents
Here’s a great list, courtesy of Vegetarian Resource Group:

Any other books to add?

Research Updates
Speaking of children and vegetarianism, Paul Appleby, a member of the IVU Science Commission, sent the following research summaries.

A paper in the December 2007 issue of the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition suggests a positive association between animal (especially dairy) protein intake in infancy and body fat percentage at age 7:

Am J Clin Nutr. 2007 Dec;86(6):1765-72.

Early protein intake and later obesity risk: which protein sources at which time points throughout infancy and childhood are important for body mass index and body fat percentage at 7 y of age?

Günther AL, Remer T, Kroke A, Buyken AE.

Research Institute of Child Nutrition, Affiliated Institute of the University of Bonn, Dortmund, Germany, and the Department of Nutrition, Food and Consumer Sciences, Fulda University of Applied Sciences, Fulda, Germany.

BACKGROUND: A high early protein intake has been proposed to increase obesity risk. OBJECTIVE: We examined whether a critical period of protein intake for later obesity may exist early in childhood and investigated the relation between protein intake from different sources and body mass index SD score and body fat percentage (BF%) at 7 y of age. DESIGN: The study population included 203 participants of the Dortmund Nutritional and Longitudinally Designed Study with information on diet at 6 mo, 12 mo, 18-24 mo, 3-4 y, and 5-6 y. Life-course plots
were constructed to assess when protein intake (% of energy) was associated with body mass index SD score and BF% at 7 y. Mean values were then compared among tertiles (T1-T3) of protein from different sources at the important time points. RESULTS: The ages of 12 mo and 5-6 y were identified as critical ages at which higher total and animal, but not vegetable, protein intakes were positively related to later body fatness. In fully adjusted models, animal protein intake at 12 mo was associated with BF% at 7 y as follows [x (95% CI) BF%]: T1, 16.20 (15.23, 17.25); T2, 17.21 (16.24, 18.23); T3, 18.21 (17.12, 19.15); P for trend = 0.008. With respect to food groups, dairy, but not meat or
cereal protein intake, at 12 mo was related to BF% at 7 y (P for trend = 0.07). Animal protein at 5-6 y yielded similar results (P for trend = 0.01), but food group associations were less consistent. CONCLUSION: A higher animal, especially dairy, protein intake at 12 mo may be associated with an unfavorable body composition at 7 y. The age of 5-6 y might represent another critical period of protein intake for later obesity risk.

Conversely, higher whole grain intake is associated with lower body mass index and lower plasma cholesterol during adulthood:
Am J Clin Nutr. 2007 Dec;86(6):1745-53.

Intake of whole grains, refined grains, and cereal fiber measured with 7-d diet records and associations with risk factors for chronic disease.

Newby P, Maras J, Bakun P, Muller D, Ferrucci L, Tucker KL.

Department of Pediatrics, Boston University School of Medicine, Boston Medical Center, and the Department of Epidemiology, Boston University School of Public Health, Boston, MA.

BACKGROUND: Research studies examining foods are important, because they account for biological interactions that might otherwise be lost in the analysis of individual nutrients. Single-nutrient studies are also needed to explore the mechanisms by which foods may be protective.

OBJECTIVE: Our objective was to examine associations between whole grains, refined grains, and cereal fiber and chronic disease risk factors. DESIGN: In a cross-sectional analysis of participants in the Baltimore Longitudinal Study of Aging, associations between dietary intakes and risk factors were examined with multivariate linear regression analysis. Dietary intakes were assessed with 7-d dietary records and quantified in g/d. RESULTS: Compared with subjects in the
lowest quintile (Q1) of whole-grain intake, subjects in the highest quintile (Q5) had lower body mass index (BMI; in kg/m(2); Q1: 25.5; Q5: 24.8; P for trend <0.0001) and weight (Q1: 75.0 kg; Q5: 72.4 kg; P for trend = 0.004) and smaller waist circumference (Q1: 87.4 cm; Q5: 85.0 cm; P for trend = 0.002). Whole grains were also inversely associated with total cholesterol (P for trend = 0.02), LDL cholesterol (P for trend = 0.04), and 2-h glucose (P for trend = 0.0006). Associations between cereal fiber and anthropometrics and plasma lipids were similar.

In subgroup analyses, refined grains were positively associated with fasting insulin among women (P for trend = 0.002). CONCLUSIONS: Similar associations of whole grains and cereal fiber with weight, BMI, waist circumference, plasma cholesterol, and 2-h glucose were observed, suggesting that cereal fiber and its constituents may in part mediate these relations. Refined grains were associated with fasting insulin among women but not men. Additional research should explore potential interaction effects with BMI, sex, age, and genes.

Welcome to Organizations Recently Registered with IVU
IVU currently has more than 1,200 registered groups. If all of them upgraded by paying our rather trivial UKP12 for full/associate members -
and UKP25 for business supporters  - and allowing for groups in developing countries paying 25% of the above fees, IVU would have much more money to fund veg projects, such as the recent West Africa Vegetarian Congress (see the first article in this issue).

If you are with one of those 1200+ registered groups, pls think about upgrading.

Vegecentral -

Boutique Vegan VivaGranola Vegan Shoppe -
Live it Up Vegan! -
Naturally Vegetarian Recipes -
Vivez Végé! -

Aktionsgemeinschaft gegen Tierversuche -

Laguna Lodge Eco-Resort & Nature Reserve -


ITALY - - - -

Japan Vegan Runners Club -

Woods Macrobiotics -

Meat Free Media -

The Wheatgrass Grower's Guide -
Vegelife vegan blog -

Arbonne Independent Consultant - UK - Deborah Hacking -

Botanical skincare 100% Organic: health, beauty, weight loss -
Charity & Oreo's Hamakua Retreats (HI) -
Health and Wealth - -
Veggie Pride Merchandise - Info, t-shirts, posters -

TrucLamTrai Vegetarian Restaurant -

Any organisation, etc. is welcome to list free of charge in this section of IVU Online News and on the IVU website. Free online registration is available at:

A listing on the IVU website or in IVU Online News does not constitute an endorsement by IVU.

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 –

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