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Deceptive Advertising by Animal Products Industry Fools Consumers; Advocates Fight Back

December 29, 2016 by 3 comments


The News

A 2016 survey conducted with 1,000 Americans who purchase or consume meat, eggs or dairy products revealed that misleading advertising by the animal agriculture industry and grocery stores has succeeded in fooling consumers. The survey showed that:

  • 65% of consumers believe that the label “free-range” means that animals spend most of their time on a pasture. In reality, a legal definition of “free range” does not exist for most farm animals. In fact, farmers do not need to prove that animals have access to the outdoors.
  • 63% believe that “cage free” means the animals have access to the outdoors when it simply means that they are not raised in cages. Advocates point out that, in “cage-free” facilities, cages of steel have been replaced with cages of flesh, as the animals are stuffed so tightly into warehouses that they have little, if any, space to move.

Labels such “organic,” “humane,” and “cage free” are used to deceive customers.

  • 60% believe that “humane” means animals have a better than average quality of life. In fact, the “humane” label is meaningless, as a legal definition does not exist.
  • 46% believe that “USDA organic” means that animals spend most of their time outdoors. However, regulations do not specify the length of time that farmers are required to give animals access to the outdoors, and they do not specify the size or quality of the outdoor space.
  • 46% believe that “natural” means animals have a better than average quality of life. However, “natural” only refers to how meat is processed and is unrelated to the treatment of the animals.

It’s not only the companies that supply the animal products that mislead the public. Grocery stores also perpetuate the “humane myth.”

In recent years, companies perpetuating the “humane myth” in order to make consumers feel good about buying their products have been exposed by animal rights groups that have conducted investigations at their facilities.

In 2016, Direct Action Everywhere (DxE) and PETA exposed corporations that supply eggs, turkeys and pork to Whole Foods, a company that notoriously promotes the animal products on their shelves as humanely raised and slaughtered. These investigations revealed animals living in filthy, overcrowded warehouses, suffering from lack of veterinary care and being physically abused.

Direct Action Everywhere has exposed horrific cruelty at Whole Foods turkey and egg suppliers.

Turkeys and egg-laying hens at Whole Foods suppliers

In addition to conducting investigations, DxE has staged hundreds of protests in Chipotle restaurants and Whole Foods markets in order to educate the public about the animal welfare lies being aggressively marketed by those companies.

The results of the survey, which was conducted by Lake Research Partners and sponsored by the ASPCA, are available online.

Opinion

According to Animal Equality, over 56 billion land animals are slaughtered each year by the animal agriculture industry. All of these animals – even those raised in the least objectionable of conditions – are treated as money-making commodities, not as individuals with a desire to live freely and in peace.  If the animal agriculture industry and the retail stores who sell their products truly cared about the humane treatment of animals, then they wouldn’t sell them. After all, isn’t killing someone who wants to live inherently inhumane?

Your Turn

With hundreds of cruelty-free, plant-based alternatives to meat, fish, dairy and egg products, making the switch to an animal-free diet has never been easier. Please take the first step using this Vegetarian Starter Kit .


Animal Rights Activist Turns 95

December 20, 2016 by 1 comment


The News

Natasha Brenner, a NYC-based animal rights activist, turned 95 on December 16th, and, apart from a few aches and pains, she is a picture of health. Ms. Brenner, a vegetarian since 1992 and vegan since 2012, attributes her longevity to meditation and her plant-based diet. “It was very hard to give up cheese, but my consciousness was raised. It’s just very satisfying to know that you’re not hurting, killing or injuring an animal.”

During her career, Ms. Brenner worked in copy editing, public relations and real estate investing. In recent years, however, she has dedicated herself exclusively to animal rights. Over the past decade, Ms. Brenner and her husband Noah, who died in 2014, participated in weekly protests and rallies to ban horse-drawn carriages from the streets of midtown Manhattan.

Natasha Brenner educates tourists about the cruelty of NYC’s horse-drawn carriage trade.

While her participation in the street protests has declined in the past two years, she continues to be advocate online. “I’m on the computer every day doing animal actions and petitions.”

Animal rights activist Natasha Brenner turns 95

While Brenner admits that she is “amazed” that she is “still here,” her friends and family are not at all surprised. “She’s as sharp today as the day I met her five years ago,” said Mickey Kramer, a friend of Brenner, who is a mere 48 years younger. “And you should see her play ping pong… amazing.”

Animal rights activist Natasha Brenner celebrates her 95th birthday with friends and family

When asked what she wants for her birthday, Brenner took a bite of her mango chick’n and said, “for all animals to be treated with respect and kindness.” And, without missing a beat, she added, “and to be six inches taller.”


A Refuge for Gentle Giants

December 13, 2016 by 1 comment


The News

In a country with dozens of elephant camps masquerading as sanctuaries, one spot in Thailand stands out as the real deal — Elephant Nature Park, a refuge for dozens of elephants rescued from logging concessions, the entertainment industry and land mine explosions.

Most of the elephant camps in Thailand allow visitors to ride the animals, a sign that they are beaten into submission by “trainers.” Elephant Nature Park, on the other hand, prioritizes the needs of the elephants by rehabilitating them, incorporating them into a herd and providing them with as natural an environment as possible.


Fur Company Canada Goose Under Siege

November 21, 2016 by 10 comments


The News

During the four days after Canada Goose opened its first retail store in the United States, animal rights activists staged massive protests at the entrance, dissuading shoppers from entering and shaming those who purchased coats after seeing images of geese and coyotes being terrorized and killed for their feathers and fur.

In this six minute video, Canadian journalist Zach Ruiter captured some of the dramatic encounters between the protesters and Canada Goose customers on the day of the store’s grand opening in New York City.

TheirTurn, which also reported from the grand opening, interviewed actor and comedian Dave Hill, who stopped by with his dog Lucy to lend his support. In addition to criticizing the Canada Goose for engaging in “mass slaughter” while masquerading as a “mom and pop” business, Hill contemplated asking the company, which uses wild dog (coyote) fur, if it would make a coat using Lucy’s fur.

In October, activists with PETA and Direct Action Everywhere (DxE) staged an in-store disruption on the opening day of its first retail store. According to PETA, “25 chanting, poster-wielding PETA supporters and DxE activists descended on the grand opening of Canada Goose’s first-ever brick-and-mortar store in Toronto. Less than a minute after protesters entered the building—where they were immediately locked in by security personnel—the company’s CEO, Dani Reiss, fled to the back of the store.”

Canada Goose is being targeted by animal rights activists because the company sells winter coats stuffed with feathers plucked out of the bodies of geese and lined with the fur of coyotes who are captured in steel leg hold traps. Advocates say that coyotes attempt to chew off their trapped limbs to escape and oftentimes starve to death while waiting for the trapper to shoot them.

Protest on the opening day of the Canada Goose store in NYC

Protest on the opening day of the Canada Goose store in NYC

The red and blue Canada Goose badge on the coats has become a status symbol in urban areas. Activists are working to ensure that customers, some of whom don’t realize they are wearing real fur, know that they’re wearing a “badge of terror.”

Activists help Canada Goose customers connect the dots between their dogs who they love and the dogs who they're wearing.

Activists help Canada Goose customers connect the dots between their dogs who they love and the dogs who they’re wearing.

Your Turn

Please ask Canada Goose to stop exploiting geese and coyotes for profit.

Animal rights activists stage protests during the four days after the store opened its first retail location in the United States

Animal rights activists stage protests during the four days after the store opened its first retail location in the United States


ThanksLiving Celebration

November 15, 2016 by Leave a Comment


The News

On November 13th, several hundred people traveled to Woodstock Farm Sanctuary in High Falls, New York for the annual ThanksLiving celebration during which guests have the privilege of feeding rescued turkeys before feasting on a four course vegan meal.

Woodstock Farm Sanctuary, a shelter for rescued cows, pigs, chickens, turkeys, ducks, sheep, goats, and rabbits, gives visitors the chance to come “face-to-face with the animals they may only know as dinner and learn about the devastating effects of modern-day agribusiness on the animals, the environment and human health.”

Feeding the turkeys at Woodstock Farm Sanctuary is an annual ThanksLiving ritual

Feeding the turkeys at Woodstock Farm Sanctuary is an annual ThanksLiving ritual

Terri, a popular vegan restaurant with three locations in NYC, catered the 2016 ThanksLiving celebration and donated the food.

Main course: Butter roasted Blackbird seitan, Grandma Terri's classic stuffing, rosemary garlic whipped potatoes, Port shiitake mushroom gravy, lemon-sauteed green beans with almond slivers, citrus cranberry sauce

Main course: Butter roasted Blackbird seitan, Grandma Terri’s classic stuffing, rosemary garlic whipped potatoes, Port shiitake mushroom gravy, lemon-sauteed green beans with almond slivers, citrus cranberry sauce

Your Turn

Please visit Woodstock Farm Sanctuary to learn more about the sanctuary and how to transition to a cruelty-free diet.

2016 ThanksLiving celebration at Woodstock Farm Sanctuary

2016 ThanksLiving celebration at Woodstock Farm Sanctuary