Viva! works hard to stop cruelty to animals, save the planet and protect your health! We are superheroes of the vegan world! Our campaigns are a huge part of this – we show what happens to animals, the planet and your health so you know how important it is to go vegan. Here you can find out how animals are farmed, what it is doing to our planet and what Viva! is doing to help!
Chickens are very clever animals! They can recognise each other and even count to 10! Little chicks can even chat to one another when they are still inside their eggs so they can hatch at the same time! Chickens live on farms until they are killed and sent to the supermarkets as food. On the farms, they have very little room to spread their wings and they spend most of their lives indoors.
Chickens also live on farms where they lay eggs. Chickens who live on egg farms are also kept in horrible barns or sometimes in cages. Chickens normally only lay 10 to 15 eggs per year but on an egg farm they lay around 300 – just so we can eat them!
Viva! has visited many factory farms where these chickens live to warn people of the cruelty that goes on. Each farm we have visited has been overcrowded and dirty with many injured birds. Chickens love to spend all day searching for food, stretch their wings and bathe in dust, which is very different from the life they lead on a farm. By going vegan you are helping to end cruelty to chickens and other wonderful animals!
Cows can have best friends and they love to solve puzzles – they get very excited when they do! They have also been known to play hide-and-seek, although we think they are a little bit too big to hide! Cows are kept on farms so they can be killed for beef. There are so many tasty veggie burgers, bean burgers and veggie mince we can eat instead!
When a cow gives birth, their baby calf needs the milk. But the baby calf is often taken away when it is very little (just a few days old!) so we can drink the cow’s milk instead. The mother cow and baby calf get very upset when they are taken away from one another and can often be heard crying for hours on end. If their baby is born a male, they are killed for meat. If their baby is born a female, they become a dairy cow. We can make lots of milk from different plants and nuts so we can leave the cow’s milk for her babies and put an end to cruelty to cows!
During summer, Viva! took a huge van around the country giving away free burgers to show just how tasty vegan burgers are! Viva! have also campaigned against dairy for many years. We have handed out vegan milkshakes, milk and cookies and even taken an ice-cream van around the UK so people can see how delicious vegan food is!
Sheep have best friends and excellent memories – they can remember 50 different faces! When a mother sheep gives birth, her baby lamb is taken away from her to be killed and then sold for meat. The supermarkets want to make more money so some sheep are forced to give birth before spring. This means that some lambs don’t even make it to the supermarket as they can struggle to survive the cold winter weather.
Pigs are very clever! They are smarter than dogs and even some human toddlers! They love to play, run around and love belly rubs just like dogs! Most pigs are kept in huge sheds often with hard concrete floors where they have no room to move around. When a mother pig gives birth to her baby piglets, she is often kept in a crate so she can’t move around. Pigs are kept in these farms until they are killed and sent to the supermarkets as meat.
Viva! and Dean Farm Sanctuary rescued a pig called Hope and her piglets from being killed. The first time Hope had ever been outside was filmed for everyone to see! The video shows her dancing, jumping and running around freely for the very first time!
Viva! have visited many factory farms where pigs are kept. Our biggest investigation was called Hogwood. We visited the farm four times and found that the pigs weren’t look after very well. We went up and down the country to tell everyone how horrible the place was where these pigs lived and we even made a short film about it! Finally, because of Viva!’s campaigns, Tesco decided not to sell the meat that came from this farm anymore!
Ducks love to swim and play in water! Their feathers are waterproof, just like a rain jacket. They love to dive for food and keep themselves clean in the water. Yet ducks are farmed in sheds where the only water they get is to drink. In these sheds, they are unable to fly and can get extremely ill. People don’t need to eat ducks or their eggs so the best thing to do is stop farming these beautiful animals and to let them live peacefully in the wild.
Fish are wonderful creatures of the sea! Each type of fish comes with its own special talent. There are more than 32,000 different types of fish alive today which is more than every other animal combined!
But just like chicken, pigs and cows, fish are farmed too. They are kept in cages in the water which are often overcrowded meaning that the fish can become ill. They are also caught using fishing boats where the fish can get hurt by trying to escape the huge nets. By doing this, overfishing can happen too. This is when more fish are taken from the ocean than can be replaced naturally. These boats also leave lots of plastic behind which causes serious damage to our oceans and the sea creatures in them.
Turkeys are very friendly birds! They love cuddles and strokes from their human friends and even sing along to music! If a group of turkeys is given an apple, they play with it like a football!
Turkeys are farmed so they can be eaten, mostly at Christmas time. They are kept crowded together in barns, so they can’t move very well which makes them very uncomfortable. A lot of these barns don’t even have windows. When the turkeys are kept in these big barns, they can get angry, sad and ill.
Sometimes they can peck at each other because of how upset they are. To stop this, farmers cut off the turkey’s beaks when they are young, rather than make the barns better for them. A vegan Christmas is the best way to stop cruelty to turkeys!
The fashion industry can be cruel. Sometimes clothing can be made from the fur and skin of animals. When we farm cows for meat or to drink their milk, we also use their skin and turn it into everyday items. This is known as leather. Leather is the skin from cows which is used to make shoes, handbags, belts and lots of other things. The good news is, it isn’t necessary that leather is used, all of these items can be bought cruelty-free.
Viva!’s campaign, The Big Cover Up, showed people the cruelty behind leather and encouraged others to stop buying leather for good!
We stay warm in winter by wearing jumpers and cardigans, but some of these are made using sheep’s wool. When sheep are killed for meat, we also use their wool to make clothes and other items. Wool is cut off the sheep in a process called shearing. Sometimes this can be done too fast and can hurt the sheep. Shearing can also be very frightening for the sheep. We can use lots of other materials to make our winter jumpers which are just as cosy!
The fashion industry also uses the fur from foxes, minks and rabbits for clothing. These animals are kept in small cages and are treated very badly until they are killed for their fur. Lots of clothing companies use fake fur so there is no need to take it from animals. Faux fur looks lovely and most importantly, no animals are hurt in the making!
Just as cow skin is used for leather, so are the skins of kangaroos. Kangaroo leather is used to make football boots. In 2003, Viva! played a leading role in showing the horrors of kangaroo leather and still continues to fight against Adidas, Nike, Puma! and Umbro to make sure they kick the cruelty out of their boots!
The planet is our home so we must take care of it. Lots of the planet’s natural forests are being cut down so the land can be used for farmed animals. These forests are not only home to lots of other incredible animals, but the trees keep the planet happy! Livestock farming produces lots of harmful gases which add to the climate crisis. Ice caps will melt and there could be huge storms or water shortages. By cutting out meat, dairy and eggs, you are helping to protect the planet!
Viva! are constantly campaigning to help protect the planet! A study found that the best and easiest thing people can do to protect the planet, is to go vegan! We have handed out free vegan burgers to show people that vegan food is just as tasty and much better for our world!