June is (Dump) Dairy Month, which means it’s time for veg*ans to dump the * and go VEGAN. It’s also time for all of us to demand some soy to the world.
The dairy industry baffles me. Not only is it one of the most egregiously cruel animal ag industries out there, with some of the most outlandish and deceptive marketing schemes to date (did you know that yogurt is the official food of women? I wonder what Carol Adams would have to say about that), but it’s still widely consumed, and the cruelties inherent in dairy production are still not talked about nearly as much as they should be. For example, I’ll bet most people you know wouldn’t think of eating veal, which is widely known to be both politically-incorrect and cruel, yet most people don’t realize the direct connection between the veal and dairy industries: you can’t have one without the other.
I could go on and on about dairy and how it is both unnecessary for humans and cruel to animals. (I did, in fact, go on and on about it in this interview. Did you know there’s a legal amount of pus and blood allowed in milk?)
Here’s a video about an undercover investigation that Farm Sanctuary did of the dairy industry:
Now, I don’t know about you, but I love my morning coffee (and my afternoon coffee and my evening coffee). I particularly love it with a splash of soy milk. So you can imagine my frustration when I visit a café that does not offer it, especially knowing the truth about dairy, and the demand for dairy alternatives (for both vegans and non-vegans). This is why I try really hard to kindly tell all managers of all Café No Soys to consider offering it on their menus, assuring them that if they build it, we will come.
My coffee shop, Local, has offered soy milk from day one. Owner Craig Walker saw the demand for it and acted accordingly. “I put it on the menu just because there’s a demand for it. There are a lot of people who are lactose-intolerant or dairy doesn’t agree with them.” (Plus, there’s us vegans, Craig.) “I go through 25-30 big cartons of soy milk a week, at least.”
Activist Patrick Kwan also gets joy from soy. While tabling in Grand Central Station, Patrick repeatedly visited the coffee shop, Oren, and asked for a soy latte. He was told they don’t have soy milk, so Patrick would say, “Oh that’s too bad… Where is the nearest Starbucks?” Patrick continued to ask for soy milk, and he made it very clear to the manager that there was, in fact, a demand for it. Soon enough, he got his soy latte.
Get yours, too. In honor of (Dump) Dairy Month, why not ask your local coffee shop to offer soy milk? (Disclaimer: True, there are a plethora of non-dairy milk options out there, and not everyone is crazy about soy, but when dealing with coffee shops and establishments, soy is the way to go. It’s usually the easiest and least expensive for the restaurant to get from their supplier.) Simply go to your local coffee shop and ask if they will consider offering soy milk on their menu. Get all your friends (vegan and not) to visit and ask for soy milk, too. You can follow up with phone calls and e-mails, but keep it light and friendly! Show them that there is a demand for soy milk, and that it is high-time they made the compassionate, healthful, eco-friendly, delicious decision to bring soy to the world. And keep me posted! I might just include you and your soy-venture in an upcoming Making Hay entry.
In the (slightly skewed) words of Three Dog Night, “Soy to the world, all the boys and girls; Soy to the fishes in the deep blue sea. Soy to you and me.”
Me and Valentino