Our Three Pillars of Value
As veggino’s founders, Noriko, Jad, Eddie and myself started veggino without having defined what was driving us to do it. We had never agreed on why exactly we thought it was a good idea to invest our time and energy into such an ambitious project – it just felt right. We knew the what (spreading awareness of a plant-based lifestyle), the where (Japan) and the when (April 2018), but not the why. Why do we think it’s so important to encourage Japanese consumers to go greener? It took us a lot of time and thought to define the core values behind veggino, values that we now all feel strongly about: Environment, Health, and Ethics.
Fact: a plant-based diet is more friendly to the environment than a diet that’s mainly based on meat or other animal products. There has been so much research done on this that it’s impossible to point out a single one- oh, wait, how about this one published in Science magazine in 2018? The gist of it is that producing meat and dairy requires a lot more land and resources than the calories and protein that they provide. In fact, the authors claim that avoiding meat and dairy is the ‘single biggest way’ to reduce your negative impact on the environment. Switching to a plant-based diet saves precious resources, reduces our carbon footprint, and is a great way to conserve the environment. Here’s one example from a recent blog post that explains why this is the case. There are a lot of ways to be environment-friendly, and we support each and every one of them! But following a plant-based lifestyle is a great one, and we just love being friends with Planet Earth.
Fact: the leading health organizations in the world all agree that significantly reducing our consumption of animal-based products would be beneficial to our health. This includes the official health organizations in the US, Europe, Australia, the UN, Harvard, Cornell- and the list goes on. Daily consumption of meat, dairy and eggs increases the risk for so-called ‘lifestyle diseases’ such as cancer, heart disease and diabetes. And while I can’t say with a straight face that having a slice of cheese every now and then will kill you, we know that having a lot of animal products is bad, and that there’s nothing wrong with healthy plant-based foods. If that’s the case, why have any animal products at all? It really doesn’t have to be all or nothing – you can eat some animal products and still be healthy – but we believe that the more plant-based you are, the better.
Fact: all over the world, almost all animal products are produced in factory farms, including not only dietary products but such auxiliary products as leather and fur. In these factories, animals are treated as machines, deprived of basic needs, and exploited to the fullest in order to save costs and maximize productivity. Such atrocious practices as grinding live male chicks, dehorning livestock, and cutting off the tails of pigs are universal in factory farms. Most of these practices happen even in production methods that are often thought of as animal-friendly such as organic or free range. There are very few facilities where animals are treated in a way that wouldn’t make most of us gasp with disgust, simply because it isn’t economical to do so. Since we at veggino believe that we have a responsibility to treat animals with respect, we support a lifestyle that doesn’t support these abusive practices: a plant-based one.
Which of our core pillars do you agree with most? Do you have other reasons for taking interest in a plant-based lifestyle? Let us know! We love to hear the thoughts of the veggino community!
I believe that animals are here to share the Earth with us, not to satisfy our desires. This led me to drop meat from my menu at an early age. In 2011, after learning about the process involved in the production of eggs and dairy, I started researching about veganism and decided to become plant-based. As I continue to learn and experiment, I still marvel at the many benefits that a plant-based lifestyle offers. I’ve lectured in schools about animal welfare and I hope that through veggino, we can help people in Japan explore this life-changing journey. The number of plant-based people worldwide has been skyrocketing in recent years, and it’s Japan’s turn now!