Sunday, October 25, 2009

Run chicken run!

Some weeks ago, my friend Maru posted a video in Facebook about the chicken and egg industry asking herself if it would be just better to go for organic when buying eggs (because of the cruelty related with the industry).

As a vegetarian, of course it caught my attention. I started watching the video and five minutes later I was already crying. I’m very sensitive about this animal cruelty subject, in fact, it is the main reason why I am a vegetarian. More than for health or lifestyle it is for my profound love towards animals and the planet that I’m not eating meat anymore.

These images shook me to the point of asking myself if I wanted to continue eating eggs and dairy products on a daily basis. This is a really tough decision for me because while I can live without meat and probably eggs I don’t see myself skipping dairy for life. Could I go from veggie to vegan? That was the BIG question.

My journalist’s side wanted to know more and find a solution to it, and even when I knew it was going to be painful I put my fingers to work and googled as much as I could about the subject. Along my way I found horrible videos about the chicken/egg industry but luckily there was also light at the end of the tunnel.

I was surprised to find that there are some options available not exclusively for vegetarians but for everyone who wants to make a change.

Even when I have already heard about them I didn't really know what all was about and I also thought it was something that you could only find in specialty stores. How wrong I was! There is something called "free-run" or "cage-free" and "free range eggs" . These eggs are produced by hens that are able to move about the floor of the barn (free-run/cage-free) or even have outdoor runs (free-range) and that have access to nesting boxes and perches. You will find them in your regular supermarket and unbelievably the difference in price between a regular eggs carton and a free-run one is just less than 90 cents! Cents that will give a better life to animals and peace to my heart and hopefully to yours as well!

For my milk crush I’ve found that soymilk is a great substitute and I already have my favourite brand called Natur-a that besides being organic you can find in vanilla, strawberry and chocolate flavours, and also in a light (less sugar) version. So, instead of having two daily glasses of milk plus my cereal (yes, I drink a lot!) I’m having one glass of each milk and soymilk and sometimes I even mix it with rice milk which is also good and delicious.

As you can see there are plenty of choices! Would I become a vegan? Still don’t know. But what I do know is that there are many ways to eat and live better and enjoy a free-cruelty world. The best part is that you don’t have to be a vegan or vegetarian to start making the difference. Substitute milk for soymilk once a week or start buying organic meat or free range eggs. Small decisions can push the world to the right direction and that’s all that matters, don’t you think?