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VSS eNewsletter, 22 May 2008

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  • George Jacobs
    VSS eNewsletter, 22 May 2008 VSS News VSS to Participate in Singapore Animal Welfare Symposium Letter
    Message 1 of 1 , May 21, 2008

      VSS eNewsletter, 22 May 2008


      VSS News

      VSS to Participate in Singapore Animal Welfare Symposium

      Letter Writers Group

      ST Forum Letter on Including Meat in Online Carbon Calculators


      Other News

      Oprah Goes Vegan �C at least for 21 Days

      Health Retreat in Borneo Highlands

      New Class Schedule from Wholesome Living

      More Classes from Raw Food Cuisine

      Vegan Cooking Classes at 7 Sensations

      Veg Outlet News

      Chicago Overturns Ban on Foie Gras in Restaurants

      Recent Scientific Research on Vegetarianism and Health

      Genetically Modified Foods

      Moby Video

      Interview with Ang Hwee, Local Weightlifter


      VSS News

      VSS to Participate in Singapore Animal Welfare Symposium

      Animal lovers be sure not to miss Singapore 's first ever Animal Welfare Symposium this Saturday. The Symposium is a platform for the various animal interest groups, animal-related organisations and the general public to convene and discuss issues affecting domestic, industrial and wild animals.


      VSS is participating in this event and we look forward to you joining the lively and productive discussion we hope to achieve. So come join in the fun and meet fellow animal lovers!


      A VSS Exco member will be speaking as part of the Symposium, to be held Sat, 24 May, 8.30am-6.30pm, at SMU's Ngee Ann Kongsi Auditorium. VSS will also have a small exhibition. Vegan lunch and tea snacks will be provided.


      Organized by:

      Animal Concerns Research & Education Society (ACRES)

      NUS Students' Animal Welfare Group

      People for Animal Welfare (SMU PAW)

      NTU Animal Lovers' Society


      Details at http://www.animalwelfare.sg


      Letter Writers Group

      A great way to reach out to the public with our important message is via letters to the forum pages of the media in any language. But writing isn't easy, as we need writing skill, information and confidence.


      Here's some advice:


               Stick to the point and do not bring in side issues

               Write simply; do not be too complicated

               Stick to the publication's word limit and their limit on the number of letter you can publish each month

               Avoid overly strong wording and unkind in criticism

               Do not give up just because a few letters went unpublished

               Look for new outlets for your letters


      If you'd like to join a VSS letter writers group, contact info@...


      ST Forum Letter on Including Meat in Online Carbon Calculators

      The following letter was sent to the ST Forum, but they declined to publish it. In addition to the one online carbon footprint calculator mentioned in the letter, there are others that also include meat. Here are a few (some are more fun than others):









      Here's the letter:


      I refer to the article "Feel-good 'green' policies misguided" in The Straits Times of May 13, 2008. The article discusses how each person's choice of food impacts the amount of carbon emissions entering the Earth's atmosphere.


      On the Internet today, many "carbon footprint" calculators allow us to derive an estimate of the amount of carbon emissions produced by our lifestyle, including the food we eat. Quite a few of these calculators include a source of food-related emissions that is missing from the article: meat consumption. An example of such a calculator is the one found on the website of The Nature Conservancy:



      Meat consumption causes increased carbon emissions because many kgs of plant food must be grown and fed to cows, pigs, chickens, etc. to produce just one kg of meat. All this unnecessary agriculture means more forests cut down and more energy consumed in the growing process.


      Global meat consumption has increased fivefold in the past fifty years, and this trend shows little sign of abating. However, every day, at every meal, each of us can help reverse this trend and reduce our carbon footprint by eating less or no meat.


      Other News

      Oprah Goes Vegan �C at least for 21 Days

      Famous tv talk show host, Oprah Winfrey, has committed to a 21-day cleanse, which includes eliminating animal products from her diet: http://www2.oprah.com/foodhome/food/cleanse/cleanse_main.jhtml


      Here's what Oprah wrote about the experience: http://www2.oprah.com/foodhome/food/cleanse/blog/blog_main.jhtml


      "Well, I feel like I got baptized in Vegan Land today. Kathy Freston sent her chef, Tal Ronnen, to help me and three friends at Harpo who are doing the 21-day cleanse.

      Wow, wow, wow! I never imagined meatless meals could be so satisfying. I had been focused on what I had to give up―sugar, gluten, alcohol, meat, chicken, fish, eggs, cheese. "What's left?" I thought. Apparently a lot. I can honestly say every meal was a surprise and a delight, beginning with breakfast―strawberry rhubarb wheat-free crepes."


      Health Retreat in Borneo Highlands

      Adventist Community Services (ACS) is organizing a health retreat at Borneo Highlands Resort, Sarawak, East Malaysia, and Holiday Inn, Kuching, Sarawak, East Malaysia on Jun 15-19 (Sun to Thu). Fees: $995.00 (net)


      For more info, please check out the website and the blog.




      For Registration, please call/sms Mark Chan at 9743.8362 or email him at markchan@...


      New Class Schedule from Wholesome Living

      24 & 31 May, Sat, 3-6pm, Wholesome Bakery

      25 May, Sun, 3-6pm, Chinese Snack Bing 2

      30 May, Fri, 7-10pm, Homemade Spread 1


      For details, please visit www.wholesomeliving-sg.com


      More Classes from Raw Food Cuisine

      Most people have a very limited view of raw food. If you're one of those people, Paul Yeoh is ready to expand your horizons with a wide variety of raw vegan food classes, including pizza and raw fast food. Paul has too many classes to list here. For the complete schedule: http://www.rawfoodcuisine.com.sg/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=62&Itemid=39


      Vegan Cooking Classes at 7 Sensations

      Join award-winning chef Thomas Wee for 4 different vegan cooking classes at 7 Sensations restaurant, 16 Madras Street (behind Tekka Mall), S. 208413, Tel: 6298.8198


      Here are the dates and cuisines to be taught:


      24 May: Peranakan

      31 May: Indian

      7 Jun: Thai

      14 Jun: Oriental


      Price: $58

      Discounts: 15% discount for payment made before the commencement date (VSS members receive 20% for early payment)

      Each student allowed to bring along a maid at FOC

      Come in a group of 4 and pay for the price of 3


      Veg Outlet News

      1. Divine Realm Vegetarian Restaurant (Branch)

      Blk 529, Hougang Ave 6, #01-245

      Tel: 6385.0797, 9818.1067


      2. Pine Tree Café

      190 Middle Road

      Fortune Centre #02-13

      S. 188979

      Tel: 9681.5457, 9815.4940

      Operating Hours: 10am - 9pm

      (Close on Sun)



      Branch Contacts


      Blk 29 Bendemeer Road #01 - 52

      S. 330029

      Operating Hours: 6am-2pm


      Blk 91 Whampoa Drive #01 - 02

      S. 320091

      Operating Hours: 6am - 2pm


      3. Vegetarian Villas 素雅轩


      Claypot rice, Satay mee hoon, etc.


      11 Jalan Bukit Merah #03-4458

      S. 150011

      (Next to ABC Market)


      Bus No.: 14, 123, 147, 153, 196, 197, 198

      Tel: 6273.2337


      Closed on Sat and Public Holidays.  Business as usual on 1st & 15th of lunar calendar


      Chicago Overturns Ban on Foie Gras in Restaurants
      Foie gras is a food that is a particularly foul (pun intended) example of how we humans mistreat our fellow animals just to please our palates. Foie gras is made from the livers of ducks and geese who are force fed. The good news is that production and sale of foie gras have been banned in some places. The bad news is that progress seldom flows in a straight line, as seen in the following article:


      Recent Scientific Research on Vegetarianism and Health

      Here's one way to keep updated on the latest veg-related health research. An abstract of the articles is available free, but to read an entire article, some form of payment or subscription is often required:



      Genetically Modified Foods

      Another area of food controversy involves genetic modification of foods. Here is one website that expresses grave concerns:


      And, here is one in support of GM foods: http://www.capmag.com/article.asp?ID=354


      Moby Video

      Moby is a DJ, songwriter, singer and veg restaurant owner with music sales in the multi-millions: http://www.moby.com


      Here's his latest video. Warning: not for children or for those who prefer to avoid gore: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MwyPI-zKqRs&feature=related


      Interview with Ang Hwee, Local Weightlifter

      There's nothing like a local example to show people that vegetarian diets contain all the nutrition we need, and we already have examples of local vegetarian athletes, such as national record holder in the marathon, M. Rameshon. But nothing can rebut the "veggies make you weak" argument better than the example of a vegetarian weight lifter. And, we have one, Ang Hwee, who is a lacto-ovo vegetarian. (As to eggs, he eats cakes and carrot cake, but feels uncomfortable eating whole eggs by themselves, such as the soft-boiled eggs served in coffee shops.)


      Here is an interview VSS did with Ang Hwee. To read a 2006 article from SportMag about him visit http://www.sportmag.com.sg/article.asp?articleId=126


      How did you get into weightlifting?

      In secondary school, I was lifting weights to improve my basketball skills. One day, I was working out at Club Fit at the National Stadium, when Tan Howe Liang, our weightlifting Silver medallist at the 1960 Olympics, spotted me and convinced me to take up his sport.


      Please tell us a bit about your career in weightlifting

      I have won medals at small championships, most recently 3 silver medals at the 2007 Thai Open in the 94kg class. In 2006, I left my position as a global buyer with an American MNC and began training full-time for the 2007 SEA Games. Unfortunately, after the Thai Open, a recurrence of a wrist injury that has plagued me throughout my career forced me to withdraw from training. My injuries are still healing, but for financial reasons, I'm afraid that I will not be able to return to full-time training, even after I have recovered. Nonetheless, I have started training again, but slowly. I enjoy lifting, and I hope to compete in the Singapore Open in the later part of this year. Also, I help in coaching members of the Singapore National team.


      How long have you been veg and what led you to switch?

      I went veg in 2006, at the age of 26, to show compassion towards our fellow animals. Also, I found that being veg increased my stamina while I was doing weight training. Previously, after an hour of working out, I would feel exhausted, but after going veg, I find that I'm still going strong for a second hour.


      Actually, 2006 was the second time that I had gone veg. The first was from sec 2 to Sec 4. Now, as an adult, I have more understanding and more control of my life.


      What about your family? Are they also veg?

      Shortly after I switched to a vegetarian diet in 2006, I showed my wife the Seeds VCD that VSS distributes. She hadn't known about the terrible suffering our fellow animals undergo in the factory farming system. Before the VCD had ended, my wife was crying uncontrollably. That was all it took to convince her to go veg too. In fact, now she does talks on vegetarianism at youth camps.


      What about the other members of your family?

      My father was not very supportive of my decision to go veg, especially because I was pursuing a career as a weightlifter. But, I told him that I don't have to have blood on my hands to become stronger, and that my metals should not be built on carcasses.


      What about the other members of the Singapore national weightlifting team?

      Although I cannot train because of my injury, I still help the team by coaching. I tell the team members the same things that I tell my father about the kindness of veg food. Plus, I tell them how going veg boosted my

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