In March, animal, consumer, environment protection, and health advocates in a thousand communities in all 50 states and 30 other countries will welcome Spring with the slogan “Eat for Life – Live Vegan.” They will ask their friends and neighbors to “kick the meat habit on March 20th (first day of Spring) and explore a healthy, nonviolent plant-based diet.”
This year marks the 25th anniversary of Meatout, the world’s largest annual grassroots diet education campaign. Caring people around the world will offer passersby samples of wholesome, convenient, delicious veggie burgers, soy dogs, and “chicken” nuggets. Many will hold a wide gamut of colorful educational events ranging from elaborate festivals to public dinners, cooking demonstrations, exhibits, and simple information tables. They will promote vegan deli slices, veggie burgers, soy dogs, ready-made dinners, and soy-based milk and ice cream - all widely available in local supermarkets.
A vigorous TV, billboard, and bus card advertising campaign, combined with extensive media coverage and letters to the editor, will carry the Meatout message to millions. A number of governors and mayors are expected to issue Meatout proclamations promoting consumption of vegetables and fruits.
Celebrity headliners include Joaquin Phoenix, Ed Asner, Bill Maher, James Cromwell, Casey Kasem, Mary Tyler-Moore, and Alicia Silverstone, who promotes Meatout on her website www.thekindlife.com.
Meatout draws massive support from consumer, environmental and animal protection advocates, as well as from public officials, health care providers, meat-free food manufacturers and retailers, educators, and the mass media. They advocate a vegan diet to reduce incidences of heart disease, stroke, cancer and diabetes, save animals from suffering on factory farms and slaughterhouses, and conserve precious environmental resources.
Increased public interest in Meatout reflect these recent developments:
* Jonathan Foer’s “Eating Animals” and two other vegan books have made the bestseller list.
* In March, the respected National Cancer Institute reported that people who ate the most red meat were "most likely to die from cancer, heart disease and other causes."
* In July, the conservative American Dietetic Association has affirmed that “”¦vegetarian and vegan diets are healthful, nutritionally adequate and may provide health benefits in the prevention and treatment of certain diseases.”
* Reports of meat consumers infected by the deadly E. coli strain continue to accumulate.
* In the November issue of World Watch magazine, two World Bank scientists have claimed that meat production may account for more than half of man-made greenhouse gas emissions.
* According to U.S. Department of Agriculture, the number of animals killed for food in the U.S. in 2009 is expected to have dropped by 6% from 2008.
The global Meatout observances are coordinated by FARM, a U.S. nonprofit public-interest organization. Individual events are conducted by local consumer and animal protection groups.
For more information, go to www.Meatout.org[ vegetarianism ]