Viva! has been campaigning for 21 years and while we have always known we were doing the right thing for the animals, the proof is now piling up. The word vegan has become entirely normalised and increasing numbers of companies are changing their products and proudly stamping them with the word ‘vegan’ in large letters. We recently held another Incredible Vegan Roadshow, this time in Portsmouth and over 2,000 people came through the doors in a single day. That’s impressive but even more so is that Viva! was the first to throw open the doors in towns and cities and invite people to come inside and find out about vegan living. Imitation is the greatest form of flattery and now there are 45 annual festivals across the UK. It is brilliant!
There is a hugely impressive change taking place amongst young people in particular and the extraordinary free runner Tim Shieff is typical (see my interview with him on page 8). He is a truly remarkable and committed man.
We are increasing our undercover activities and the latest shocking revelations start on page 11 – piglets kept in battery cages by a Red Tractor approved farm that supplies Morrisons! It beggars belief but again there is optimism as not only are pork sales falling, sales of all meat are heading downwards.
We took a chance when we founded Viva! Poland 15 years ago but our first big success there came quickly with a slashing of live horse exports for meat by 60,000 animals – two thirds of the total. Viva! Poland has gone from strength to strength and is now the pre-eminent animal group in Poland. On page 15 we report on one of their latest interventions in rescuing fur foxes from an abysmal hell hole.
Scientific research on diet and health has piled up over the past 21 years and now we distil it all into a ground-breaking piece of work. With over 200 references, The Incredible Vegan Health Report dispels any doubts that this is the healthiest-possible diet (see page 31).
As a woman and a mother, it has always disturbed me that so many women are so sanguine about drinking the milk of another mammal and are often entirely ignorant of the processes that are essential before it arrives in their fridge. On page 39, Viva!Health researcher Dr Justine Butler provides the disturbing evidence as to why milk is a feminist issue.
There is so much to read and celebrate in this 60th edition of Viva!life.
Yours for the animals
Founder & Director