with dozens of particles becoming embedded in tissues, scientists have warned, in findings described as ‘sobering’ by the Prince of Wales. Researchers from the University of Ghent in Belgium believe that microplastics accumulate in the body over time and could be a long term health risk. And they say the amount of plastic absorbed will only get worse as pollution in the oceans increases, a finding described by the Prince of Wales as ‘sobering.’ The Prince has previously described micro-particles as ‘grey goo.’ Dr Colin Janssen, who led the research, said the presence of plastic particles in the body was ‘a concern’. “Now we’ve established that they do enter our body and can stay there for quite a while, we do need to know the fate of the plastics,” he told Sky News to coincide with the launch of Sky’s new environmental campaign Sky Ocean Rescue. “Where do they go? Are they encapsulated by tissue and forgotten about by the body, or are they causing inflammation or doing other things? “Are chemicals leaching out of these plastics and then causing toxicity? We don’t know and actually we do need to know.”
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Meet the new Baileys Almande Almondmilk Liqueur. This naturally light tasting spirit is a dairy-free, gluten-free and certified vegan liqueur that blends the luscious, nutty flavors of real almondmilk with delicious vanilla for an incredibly versatile treat. Last year Baileys hit issues with creating a certified vegan product when it was discovered they used beeswax in the recipe. Baileys worked hard to remove all animal products from the formulation. Baileys representative Dominic Benigno told VegNews “We respect vegans and veganism, want to be fully transparent, and offer Irish cream that everyone can enjoy.”
Remember when Baileys released “Almande,” their classic Irish Cream liqueur made with almond milk instead of dairy, and for a hot minute, the vegan food space rejoiced? No longer would cocktail enthusiasts have to DIY their own Irish Cream. Life was good — or so we thought. Although Baileys received an overwhelmingly positive response from vegans and dairy-free people alike, there was just one little problem. Unfortunately, the dairy-free version of their classic Irish Cream liqueur was not vegan at all because the formula contained beeswax. Bummer.
In replacement of cow’s milk, the London cafe will serve almond, oat and soy alternatives. After learning about the horror(s) of factory farms and the reality that accompanies drinking commercial cow’s milk, owners of a cafe in London made the bold decision to ditch all beverages sourced from animals entirely.
Norwich-based One Planet Pizza has exceeded its crowdfunding goal of £20,000 by more than £6,000, becoming the UK’s first crowdfunded all-vegan company. The brand’s success stems from incorporating consumer engagement into its business model. “[We] want to fund [our] new venture through ‘veginvestment’ so it is ‘owned’ by the vegan community,” the company stated on its website, as those who are interested can invest for as little as £16. The company are also planning to employ vegans and use vegan suppliers wherever they can. Funding from initial investors—ranging from £16 to £2,000 —makes up 20 percent of the company’s equity. These shareholders gain insider access to the development of the brand and a say in deciding which vegan charity organisations will receive 10 percent of yearly profits via the company’s charity branch, One Planet Pizza Fund.
Vegan blogger Hench Herbivore is working with the company to create protein-loaded pizzas and will serve as a social media marketing advocate, alongside Damien Clarkson of ethical creative studio The Growing Box and YouTuber Bastian Altrock.
Pizzas will feature Bute Island coconut oil-based “Sheese” and wheat-based Vegandeli meat in flavors such as Hawaiian, Exotic Funghi Feast, Three Shreese Margherita, and Mediterranean Roasted Vegetable. In addition to pizzas, the brand also produces a line of vegan “redi-meals,” which will be available for purchase at local retail outlets and by delivery in parts of England.
These are good products with flavor and texture resembling our similar products of meat. We have put much effort into product development to make this happen, and hope that consumers will like the result as much as we do.
A pet parrot that spoke with a British accent when it disappeared from its home four years ago has been reunited with its owner – and the bird now speaks Spanish. The reunion was brought about by a Southern California veterinarian who mistook Nigel, an African gray parrot, for her own missing bird. Teresa Micco tracked Nigel’s microchip to Darren Chick, a Briton who lives in Torrance. “I introduced myself and said, ‘Have you lost a bird?'” Micco told the newspaper. “He initially said, ‘No.’ But he thought I meant recently.” When she verified Chick’s name and said she had his African grey parrot, “He looked at me like I was crazy.”
Vegan products are usually relegated to a tiny section in conventional grocery stores, but Portland, Oregon will soon be home to an entire vegan supermarket. Veganz, the first and world’s largest vegan grocery store chain, will set up shop in the famously crunchy city later this year. Along with a supermarket, Veganz also plans to open a shoe and clothing store and restaurant in Portland.
We are long past the time where we can continue to deny the adverse effects that animal agriculture has on our planet. In the past 40 years, our love affair with meat and dairy has wreaked havoc on the planet. We have lost 58 percent of all wildlife from the face of the earth while countless other species are being pushed to the brink of extinction. There is currently more carbon dioxide in our atmosphere than there has been in the past 800,000 years, a number that is driven primarily by animal agriculture, which accounts for 14.5 percent (or more, according to some sources) of all greenhouse gases — more than the entire transportation sector put together. Our air and waterways are also riddled with pollution due to run-off from factory farm waste, exposing us to harmful antibiotics and other toxins.
On top of all that, there are countless other problems caused by animal agriculture. It can be enough to make your head spin. Luckily, change is easy — and it begins on our plates. One German politician realized that and has decided to create change for the better. Barbara Hendricks, Germany’s current Federal Minister for the Environment and member of the Social Democrats (SPD), has just banned meat at all official government functions. According to The Daily Telegraph, the ban came to light in an email from Hendricks to all German government department heads, stating “we want to set a good example for climate protection, because vegetarian food is more climate-friendly than meat and fish.”
This, of course, has not gone over well with other German officials. German Food Minister Christian Schmidt weighed in on the issue, stating: “I’m not having this Veggie Day through the back door. I believe in diversity and freedom of choice, not nanny-statism and ideology.” This is the same minister who has called for a ban on terms such as “vegetarian schnitzel,” “vegetarian sausage,” and “vegetarian meatballs” on the grounds that “These terms are completely misleading and unsettle consumers. I favor them being banned in the interest of clear consumer labeling.” Just like we are perplexed by the U.S. dairy industry’s uproar over the label “almond milk” or Unilever’s attempted lawsuit over vegan mayonnaise calling itself “mayonnaise,” we have to wonder if Schmidt is truly interested in protecting the fragile consumer mind or if he is simply attempting to fight the growing plant-based food industry.
While Hendricks’ ban on meat only extends to official functions and not what government officials will be served daily at the staff canteen, she has made a bold statement for the environment — one that we hope will inspire other government officials to do the same.
Looking for some lip smacking Barbeque? Try out some of the mock meat at Chaap ki Chhap, the newest eatery located at Bon Bon Lane, Ratan Nagar Corner, Mumbai. Mumbaikars are raving about the delicious assortment of items on the menu, which are all traditionally North Indian. You can choose from rolls, tikkis, burgers or even momos stuffed with soya chaap! You only have to visit their Facebook page to see the rave reviews and their growing fan following.
The joint is pure vegetarian and vegan-friendly, the owner, ex-hotelier Ameet Dawar, tells us to our tremendous delight that they are more than open to veganise the various items on the menu upon request. Up to ten or twelve dishes on the menu can be easily made vegan, he assures us. The menu is more soya-based than dairy yet they use cream in their sautéing, sauces and marinades so make sure you ask first! He heartily recommends the Special Japani ‘Fish’ for vegans.
Ameet adds, “I really recommend people to try out the dishes at least once, if they do not like it I am willing to not receive any payment for it, but that has never happened!”.
The study is the first comprehensive risk assessment of its kind. Scientists calculated that more than 99 per cent of the microplastics pass through the human body – but the rest are taken up by body tissues.
Most are excreted, but on average each mussel contains one tiny fragment lodged in its body tissue. As plastic pollution builds up in the ocean that will increase.
If current trends continue, by the end of the century people who regularly eat seafood could be consuming 780,000 pieces of plastic a year, absorbing 4,000 of them from their digestive systems.
The Prince of Wales said: “I find it sobering to think that almost all the plastic ever produced is still here somewhere on the planet in one form or another and will remain here for centuries to come, possibly thousands of years.”
There are more than five trillion pieces of microplastic in the world’s oceans and the equivalent of one rubbish truck of plastic waste is being added to the sea every minute.
By 2050 that will increase to four trucks every minute. The plastic in the ocean will take decades or even centuries to break down into small pieces, but many scientists believe it will never completely disappear.
Dr Janssen added: “The next generation or two generations might say they left us a rotten plastic legacy because now we are suffering in various ways from that legacy.
“We have to do something about it.”
Sky Ocean Rescue launches today with the campaign, initially led by Sky News, aiming to educate and inspire people to change their behaviour to help protect our oceans and dramatically reduce the amount of plastic waste produced every day that end up in them.
Visit the campaign’s website at www.skyoceanrescue.com. To discover the scale of the damage caused by plastic disposed in oceans, watch A Plastic Tide on Sky Atlantic at 8pm on Tuesday January 24th or on Sky News at 8pm on Wednesday January 25th.