Fall 2013

    Issue: Fall 2013

    Table of Contents

    • Sally Kneidel, PhD is a scientist who’s published 11 books published on the environment and social responsibility, natural history and teaching science — including Veggie Revolution, which was co-authored with her daughter, Sadie Kneidel.  Kneidel has a doctorate in biology from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where her focus of study centered on interspecific and intraspecific competition and predation, observing species of woodland salamanders on the Piedmont and in the mountains of North Carolina. Additionally, she has a masters in Zoology from the University of Oklahoma where she studied with Dr. Roger Fouts, a pioneer in teaching American Sign Language to chimpanzees.  After a year and half of working with chimps, Kneidel decided she was more interested in animals’ natural behavior in the field and transferred to UNC. Kneidel contributes work to various blogs and scientific papers, which range in topics. In addition to academic science, Kneidel writes frequently on climate change, the importance of growing organically and wildlife issues.

      On your blog, you mention that many conventional potato farmers won’t even eat their commercially grown potatoes.  Really?

      That is true.  And it says a lot.

      I used to imagine that root vegetables might be protected from chemical sprays and powders by being underground.  But they’re not.  Potatoes are the most popular vegetable in the U.S., so potato plants are doused with a number of chemicals to keep the spuds free of blemishes. The chemicals soak into the soil, where a growing potato absorbs them into its flesh. The contaminants can’t be peeled or scrubbed off.  The applied chemicals include fungicides during the growing season, and pre-harvest herbicides to obliterate the green foliage and get it out of the way. Post-harvest, a chemical to inhibit sprouting, is applied directly to the naked potatoes.

      It was Jeffrey Moyer as chair of the National Organic Standards Board who made the comment about conventional potato farmers.  He said, “I’ve talked with potato growers who say point-blank they would never eat the potatoes they sell. They have separate plots where they grow potatoes for themselves without all the chemicals.”

      There’s a lot of confusing information about organic versus non-organic. Conflicting information seems to be rampant. What are your thoughts?

      Some food labels don’t mean much, like “all natural.”  A lot of food labels are purposely misleading, such as “made with real juice.”  How much real juice?  One percent?  But the label “organic” does actually mean something.  Organic is not perfect, but it’s worth seeking out, and worth paying extra for.  Organic food is safer for your body, and organic farming is safer for everyone. Farming without synthetic pesticides and harmful fertilizers protects farm workers, our land and surface waters, wildlife and habitat.  Buying food that hasn’t been genetically modified helps protect our seed stock for future generations, among other things.

      To qualify for the organic label, a plant-based food must be produced without most conventional pesticides (no synthetic pesticides), without fertilizers made from sewage sludge or synthetic ingredients, without bioengineering or genetic modification, and without ionizing radiation.  A USDA-approved certifier must inspect the farm where the food is grown annually to verify that the farmer is following all the rules to meet USDA organic standards.  Companies that handle or process the food before it reaches the supermarket or restaurant must be certified too. 

      A food that is certified organic is allowed to bear the “USDA organic” emblem, but does not have to. More often, simply the word “organic” is used, which means that 95% of the ingredients in the product have been certified organic.  If it is 100% organic, it can say so on the package.  “Made with organic ingredients” means that at least 70% of the ingredients have been certified organic.

      Organic certification is good and I support it.  That said, certification isn’t free for the farmer.  I personally know many small-scale farmers who can’t afford the hundreds of dollars or even a couple of thousand dollars that the farmer must pay every year for the annual inspection and certification process.  Given that expense, not being certified doesn’t necessarily mean that food isn’t grown by organic guidelines.  At farmers markets, if produce isn’t labeled organic, I ask the farmer or gardener how it was grown, if pesticides were used.  Most of them will tell me straight, even if it means I don’t buy their stuff.  Sometimes I ask to visit the farm, and I find that most small farmers who use sustainable and humane methods welcome visitors.

      Does organic certification mean that no pesticides have been used?

      Actually, no.  In most states, organic farmers are allowed to use some pesticides derived from natural sources, but not synthetically-manufactured pesticides.  These allowed pesticides may not be entirely harmless to human health; many organic consumers object to them.  But most organic farmers use other methods to help control pests, even if they do use some sprays.  These other methods include selecting crops that may resist local insects, crop rotation that can keep pests of a particular crop from building up in a field,  insect traps, predatory insects, beneficial microorganisms and other biological controls. 

      Why is organic food so much more expensive than inorganic? 

      In the long run, conventional farming is more expensive for society. Conventional farming compacts and degrades soil and streams, contaminates water and soil with pollutants, destroys habitat alongside fields, impairs the health of farm workers and consumers.  These are all costs that society will pay for in the long run, in reparation and health care, and when prices rise later due to loss of natural resources. Conventional farmers are allowed to pass on the costs of the damages they do to someone down the line – not their immediate consumers.

      The Organic Farming Research Foundation said it this way: “The organic price tag more closely reflects the true cost of growing the food: substituting labor and intensive management for chemicals, the health and environmental costs of which are borne by society.”

      But yes, organic food is more expensive in markets.  There are lots of reasons for that; below are  a few.

      Crop loss and spoilage

      Since organic farmers don’t use synthetic pesticides, their losses are higher – more of their crops are eaten by pests or crowded out by weeds.  Also, shelf life is shorter without the chemical preservatives added to conventional foods, so losses to spoilage are higher.

      Manual versus chemical labor

      Organic farmers often have to hire labor to do work such as weeding and working manure into the soil, work that synthetic chemicals and chemical fertilizers would do on a conventional farm.   

      Mass production is cheaper

      Food produced on huge conventional farms is cheaper because mass production is almost always cheaper than small-scale, hands-on production.

      High costs of fertilizing naturally

      Natural fertilizers such as compost and manure are much more expensive to ship than the sewage sludge and chemical fertilizers used by conventional farmers.

      Organic livestock feed is expensive

      According to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, organic feed for cattle can cost twice as much as conventional feed. 

      No GM seeds

      For many crops, such as corn and soybeans, non-genetically-modified seeds are more expensive than GM seeds.  Organic certification forbids use of GM seeds.

      What fruits and vegetables are best to eat organically?

      The Environmental Working Group publishes an annually updated list of conventionally farmed fruits and vegetables to avoid.  The updating is important because every year, new pesticides are approved and old ones are banned, and that affects foods differently.  Different pesticides are used on different crops. A list of the worst 48 fruits and vegetables, in order of worst to best, can be found at http://www.ewg.org/foodnews/list.php.  In other words, this is a list of foods that you should buy only if they are organically produced.

      EWG also publishes a “Dirty Dozen Plus” list of the worst 12 in terms of chemical pesticides, and a “Clean Fifteen” list of 15 fruits and vegetables that don’t need to be bought as organics.

      The 12 they list right now as the most contaminated (worst to best) are: apples, strawberries, grapes, celery, peaches, spinach, sweet bell peppers, imported nectarines, cucumbers, potatoes, cherry tomatoes, hot peppers.

      EWG doesn’t mention cotton that I know of.  Fibers can be certified organic too by the USDA.  Like other organic crops, organic plant fibers must be grown without synthetic pesticides and without chemical fertilizers or sewage sludge.  Farms that grow conventional cotton are among the worst offenders in terms of toxins.  Cotton uses 25% of the world’s pesticides!  Some fibers that are thought to be eco-friendly are not necessarily so, such as bamboo. Bamboo is not even a naturally-occurring fiber.  The fibers are created with pulped bamboo that is mixed with chemicals and then extruded from a shower-head type of device. 

      Organic fibers are a big subject that I and my co-author covered thoroughly in our book Going Green  http://www.amazon.com/Going-Green-Consumers-Shrinking-Planet/dp/B007MXRU42/ref=sr_1_5?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1372700603&sr=1-5 The processing of fibers involves a separate organic certification from the Organic Trade Association, which addresses the toxicity of dyes, bleaches, and “easy care” finishes.

      The most valuable bit of information I gleaned from our investigation of organic fibers is that organic cotton is worth what it costs

      What about organic and its impact on wildlife?  How does it benefit living animals?

      This is a huge question that could take a whole book to cover thoroughly.  But I’ll tell you a specific example, one that’s dear to my own heart.  And that’s the effect that conventional farming is having on monarch butterflies.  Monarchs are beautiful big orange butterflies native to the US and Mexico.  They are unique in that they migrate thousands of miles annually, farther than any other butterfly.  Because of that, they’re celebrated and beloved across this country.  Some towns have monarch festivals to celebrate the annual arrival of their local monarch population.  Anyway, the monarch species is declining. The reason for that is primarily the rampant spraying of the herbicide Round-Up in the Midwest.  Monarch populations have historically been heaviest in Midwestern states. In winter they migrate to a mountain range in central Mexico, to overwinter in a dormant state.  They return in spring to lay their eggs on milkweed that often grows along the edges of farm fields. Milkweed favors somewhat disturbed soil and the edges of farm fields provide that.

      Corn and soybeans are our two biggest crops in the Midwest.  Monsanto has genetically modified corn and soybeans to resist Monsanto’s most popular herbicide, Round-Up.  Monsanto heavily markets the GM seeds for their GM crops, and the company has taken legal action to make it very difficult for Midwestern farmers to use normal seeds. As a result, almost all the corn and soybeans in the Midwest are resistant to Round-Up. They’re called “Round-Up Ready” seeds and crops. Since the crops are resistant to the herbicide, crop fields are sprayed much more heavily than they used to be to kill weeds – which means any plant near the field that’s not a crop.  So all the milkweed in the vicinity is killed too.  No plants for monarchs to lay their eggs on. No milkweed for the larvae to feed on.  Consequently, the monarch population is plunging.

      If those crops were organic, they wouldn’t be genetically modified, and farmers would not be spraying the whole countryside with the massive amounts of the synthetic and dangerous pesticide Round-Up.  Ack!  That subject makes me feel sick. That one corporation can exert so much control over the welfare of our farmers, our food, our land, our water, our wildlife, our future….it’s very disturbing.

      But aside from that pet peeve, conventional farming harms wildlife in lots of other ways.  The runoff from spraying of pesticides (including Round-Up) pollutes surface waters, including the ponds where amphibians breed. Amphibians have very permeable soft skin that easily absorbs toxins, and that’s one reason amphibian populations are dropping more precipitously than any other class of vertebrate. 

      The insects and insect larvae that birds, reptiles, and small mammals feed on are of course killed by the spraying of pesticides, reducing the amount of food they have available. Or they may eat contaminated prey, or contaminated plants, moving the toxins on up the food chain.  Wildlife are losing habitat and food sources for all kinds of reasons – development of land to accommodate the growing human population, climate change, degradation of surface waters from construction runoff, displacement of native food plants with invasive species or ornamental plantings, and so on.  The loss of food and the fouling of habitat from agricultural chemicals is an additional serious blow, in a list that’s already far too long.

      Organic farmers on the other hand tend to protect habitat and wildlife resources much more.  Small farmers tend to have much more heterogeneous space on their farms.  Instead of huge expanses devoid of anything but crops, they’re more likely to keep some trees for nesting birds, to keep open spaces of wild native plants.  Organic farms are more likely to feature mixed planting, rather than monocultures, and crop rotation to manage weeds and pests. Both are beneficial to wildlife by providing a variety of spaces, and maintaining the health of the soil and soil organisms.

      In general, organic farmers tend to be more mindful of the effect their practices have on nearby streams and on the long-term health of their soil. They tend to be more conscientious about conservation.  If they were purely profit-driven, they would probably not have chosen organic farming.

      What else are you up to these days?

      Because I’m a wildlife fanatic, I’ve become a passionate climate activist. I happen to live in a city with the headquarters for two corporations that are major drivers of climate change.   One is an electric utility that is the 2nd biggest utility emitter of CO2 in the country; the other is a bank that is the nation’s biggest financier of the coal industry, enabling coal’s climate-changing emissions.

      Climate change is the biggest threat to life on Earth that our species has ever faced.  This is not the place to expound on the social and political chaos that will result from agricultural failure and inundation of coastlines.  Half the world’s population lives within 130 miles of a coastline.

      But this is a place to mention wildlife.  The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change predicts that more than a third of the Earth’s species will be extinct by mid-century, and up to 70% by 2100.  These extinctions would severely impact all ecosystems and human societies – we’re all interconnected and mutually dependent.

      Animals can be impacted in very subtle ways, startling ways.  Ecosystems are intricate, finely tuned over millions of years.  My son Alan is a bird scientist (a graduate student) studying the effect of sea-level rise on birds that nest on coastlines.  He talks to me about irruptions – large numbers of birds turning up outside of their normal range, because some small change in temperature or rainfall or winds has changed their habitat or food source.  Insect larvae they feed their young are now emerging too late in the season, for example. A couple of months ago, my son sent me a photo of northeastern Razorbills way out of place, in Miami! They’re oceanic birds whose normal marine diet has been changed by shifting ocean currents – due to climate change.  The Razorbills were flying down the east coast from New England, desperately seeking food, and many were found dead along southern coastlines from starvation or exhaustion.  I cried when he sent me that picture, because I love animals, but also because I love him, and it causes him pain.  It hurts me to think that we nurtured his love of birds, and now….   We didn’t know this would happen.

      But I really believe it’s not too late to change our actions.  It’s too late to do it just by lifestyle changes, we need political action. We need to pressure local politicians, national politicians, and corporations that are driving climate change or allowing it through legislation. Bill McKibben of 350.org talks a lot about that. 

      Public Citizen has an effective climate campaign, http://www.citizen.org/Page.aspx?pid=496.  I’m working in my state through Greenpeace and NC WARN. 

      For myself, I learned that joining together with others working for change is energizing.  There’s a social synergy in working with others that empowers us.  Whether the cause is climate change, a sustainable food system, animal welfare, or educating our youth for the challenges of tomorrow…..the world needs our help!  And helping it feels good. 


      Some people have a knack for choosing the outfits that work best for them.  This book is for those who long to be told the secrets of living harmoniously with one’s wardrobe. It’s a systematic and well-explained set of approaches to help you figure out how to dress authentically…you.

      Ginger Burr, based in Massachusetts but active throughout the Internet universe, is an image consultant whose in-person work includes shopping forays with clients.  And they typically ask, “Where to begin?  My eyes keep darting in a million different directions and I feel totally overwhelmed.”  Ginger is the voice of calm, with all the ins and outs of shopping successfully — where to go, and what to do when you get there.  And these appear, in beautifully written prose, in That’s So You!

      “The book is for any woman who is frustrated with her style,” Ginger explains.  “She could be a career professional, or just someone who feels lost and is looking for guidance.  It is, however, written with the woman over 35 in mind.”

      And it’s full of creative ideas on how to…

      • Be happy with the person you actually are. Stop feeling judged and instead feel supported.
      • Put quality before quantity:  less clothing can mean much more to wear confidently.
      • Adopt pro tips, such as how to look good when photographed.  Get objective pointers on choosing the eyeglasses that work for your face and personality. Know what looks good on your body shape and why.
      • Avoid common style mistakes — or at least know what they tend to be, so you can judge for yourself.
      • Choose clothes to ensure versatile comfort, whether in winter or summer temperatures.

      That’s So You! is also a great opportunity to release old habits and start anew, interrogating the comfortable ruts and the wardrobe blahs.  A common habit of clothes shopping is to buy pieces when we find them — which sounds sensible, but is the reason behind those “orphaned” garments hanging around unworn.  Tip:  If you cannot think of at least two items you already own that can finish the attractive offering, leave it in the store (or complete the outfit on the spot)!  As Ginger says, add up the money you have spent on things you do not wear because you couldn’t figure out how to make them work, then allow that to inspire you to adopt this new habit.  It will never let you down.

      Most important of all, Ginger wants you to highlight and celebrate the natural beauty of your own individuality and kindness.  Yes, kindness is stylish; indeed it has considerable impact on beauty and grace.  And no, you do not, as Ginger puts it, have to be in your twenties and wafer-thin to have a vegan wardrobe.

      And this is one of the great aspects of this book.  Ginger’s passion for finding the best animal-friendly choices will inspire readers with a new perspective.  The low-down on fur, leather and wool are offered — sensitively, but not shyly.  The cosmetics, accessories, and everything recommended in the book are free of animal products and testing.  Ginger (who has light red eyelashes) says: “The search for animal-, earth- and people-friendly mascara has not been easy, but I have found several (Ginger points, for just one example, to Ecco Bella Flower Color Natural Mascara).

      As you can see, this book will serve as a useful reference when people ask, “How do I find vegan [fill in the blank: mascara, dressy shoes, suit for an upcoming interview].” But it is also a joy to read, and often enlightening. When we express who we really are with what we wear, we achieve a sense of real confidence and authentic style.

      No wonder this book's subject keyword is not “fashion” but “self-improvement.”  Ginger Burr suggests dressing to invite the universe to reward you with opportunities — a wonderful affirmation.  This is style at its best: it's about cultivating a confident and generous outlook on living.

      And now, That’s So You! has a website of its own: www.createalookyoulove.com

      Note to readers: Ginger Burr consulted with Friends of Animals for a section of this book.  The reviewer received a thank-you copy from the author, but was not asked to write a review.  This one’s offered because the book and its author merit our members’ attention.

    • I didn’t see the two black bears until they were 30 feet away…

      If Sherrie and I had been alone on our mountain bikes, the sighting would have been nothing more than a bonus on a perfect October afternoon.  Even the presence of our two unleashed blue heelers, Chase and Brisa, wasn’t a huge deal; with 18 years of Southeast Alaska trail experience between them, they were pros around wildlife. And even the bears themselves weren’t a big worry.  They were almost certainly local guys, polite and people-wise.  They’d step back, we’d take the wide way around, and all would go back to minding their own.

      Problem was, there was a wild card in our deck.        

      A knee-high, bat-eared, straw-colored streak rocketed past, trailing Sherrie’s panic-tinged cry of “Loki heeeere!” Loki, all 29 pounds of him, skidded to a stop practically nose-to-nose with the nearest nonplussed bruin.  And just as fast as he’d gone in, our dog came flying back—with an irate bear two feet off his rump.  I was half off my bike, ready to chuck it at the bear, when our old girl, Chase, kicked into motion with a herd-defending rush.  All bluff, maybe, but the bear swapped ends and bounded off into the scrub, with the smaller bear breaking trail ahead. The world settled to normal, except for our pulse rates. The whole thing might have taken four seconds.      

      You couldn’t blame the bear. On the other hand, it wasn’t exactly Loki’s fault either. Truth is, he couldn’t have been expected to know any better. He’d been in Alaska for all of five months, and was a long way from home.         

      If you’d scrolled back a year-and-a-half, you’d never have guessed Loki’s improbable future as an Alaska dog—or that he’d have a future at all. He was being raised for pit bull bait in a crack house in rural central Florida when a homeless woman seeking a guard dog for her camp bought him for five bucks. She ended up in jail, and Loki (who at the time went by the name Shithead) was abandoned, tied to a tree in the woods, sick and starving. A resident of the camp was going to end his misery with a bullet when a wiry ex-con with a soft heart named Brad stepped in, stuffed him in a backpack, and delivered the half-dead little dog to a friend named Pam.

      Pam nursed him back to health and gave the scrawny animal things he’d never had—regular meals, a sense of security, and a big dollop of love. Pam also happened to share Sherrie’s passion for AKC agility trials, and it was at one of these timed obstacle course competitions in Florida last winter where we first met the dog she’d renamed Casper. Pam (whom we knew just slightly at the time) informed us she had a beautiful, wonderful dog we needed, and a dog that needed us. Sherrie and I peered dubiously at the scrawny, gremlin-eared, pink-nosed creature, and figured Pam needed an eye exam. We politely shook our heads and backed away. Yeah, we’d lost our good black Lab, Gus, to cancer a few months earlier, but we weren’t looking for a replacement. And we sure as hell didn’t want some funny-looking little mutt like that. But Pam wouldn’t give up. Take him for a couple of weeks, she urged. This was meant to be our dog. We’d see.

      Well, damned if we didn’t end up keeping him. Much to our amazement, Chase, who loathed all strange canines, decided right off that this new thing was fine, even when it crowded her off the couch. We suspected she didn’t recognize him as a dog. As for Brisa, she and the newcomer started right in tussling nonstop, and joining in games of chase-me at breakneck speed. When Pam had told us that little dog was fast, she wasn’t joshing. He left Brisa—a muscle-ripped speedster—snapping at air. He also proved to be a quicker learner than any dog we’d known. But the most amazing thing about this new guy was his attitude: a good-humored, playful exuberance coupled with a soft, affectionate side that stole our hearts. By all rights, he should have been an emotionally mangled mess. Instead, about the only remnant of his abuse-riddled past was a profound dislike of menacing men wearing hoodies—go figure. After careful thought, we gave him the third name of his short life: Loki, after the shape-shifting Norse god of mischief–apt enough, considering this dog’s infectious sense of humor and the way he managed to look pure-bred noble and downright odd just eye-blinks apart.

      So it was that Loki, just eighteen months old, stepped out of his airline crate into a strange, new world, a chilly, brooding land of mountains and dark forest, heavy with the scent of unknown creatures. Being himself, he hit the ground running and never looked back. You’d think that a Florida-raised dog encountering his first patch of snow or meeting his first sea lion might freak. Instead, that little dog went barreling out front down unknown trails and along rocky shores, as if he were showing us the way.

      Though a bit too fearless around porcupines and bears–three  of the former, seven of the latter, all up close—he’s shown remarkable restraint and a sharp learning curve that’s so far left him unscathed by quill or claw. That said, the poor guy bears a continually morphing patchwork of welts and scratches, thanks to his insistence on racing through life, devils club and all, at damn-the-torpedoes full throttle. Our worst fear is that by the time he’s gained enough sense to slow down, he’ll be a solid mass of scar tissue. 

      Actually, the toughest part about owning this dog has been fielding people’s reactions. I’ve never been around a canine that attracts so much attention—and utterly divided, at that. Either people comment on how beautiful he is, or they snicker. A few weeks ago, out near the glacier, Loki came flying around the corner through a bunch of tourists, who burst into laughter. One of them sputtered, “We thought you had a pig!” I had to concede the resemblance. Another time, someone told Sherrie he looked like something out of Star Wars. Everyone wants to know what kind of dog he is; we say we’re wondering the same damn thing. Meanwhile, Loki rushes on through the world, an object lesson in joyful resiliency, out front, showing us all the way.

    • LETTER 1 – Shooting Targets, Not Animals

      I am an avid animal activist. I fight everyday for animal welfare in some form — donating food to the local shelter, giving money when I can.  I have a sterilized feral cat colony.  I have more than a dozen animals that have medical needs or have been rescued from circumstances that make them “unadoptable.”  I also carry a gun, belong to a gun club and have a concealed carry permit.  I do not murder animals, nor do I have any desire to murder animals.  Just the opposite.  Many of the people I know who also carry a gun enjoy inanimate-object target shooting.  We have no desire to go on any shooting rampage at a school or business.  We believe we have the right and privilege to protect ourselves, family, neighbors, pets and property against such maniacs.

      I do not support the animal hunts of the NRA.  They are cruel and heartless.  I stand by Friends of Animals and many other animal welfare groups that truly care about the animals.  I'm a “crazy cat lady,” not a crazy gun owner.
      Dawn Gott
      Russellville, AR


      LETTER 2 – Defending Polar Bears

      It is despicable that Greenpeace and World Wildlife Fund would be supportive of polar bear hunting of any kind.  (Greenpeace and the World Wildlife Fund claimed the Canadian hunt was sustainable at the CITES meeting in 2013.)  Those two groups are a complete disgrace pretending to be on the side of wildlife.

      D. Worthington


      LETTER 3 – Animals Killing Contests:  A Blight on Humanity

      This is in regards to the feature article that appeared in Summer Act∙ionLine, “Subjecting Animals and Children to Killing Contests.”

      I commend Carole Raphelle Davis, Friends of Animals and all the Animal Rights Advocates who banded together to raise awareness of the killing contest known as “Squirrel Slam Day” which has taken place over the past seven years in the small community of Holley in northwestern New York.

      It was Albert Schweitzer who brought to light and encouraged others to embrace an ethic of reverence for all life.

      It is a disgrace when a killing contest is billed as a fundraiser and children are encouraged to participate in such a callous event.

      I hope and pray that all the youth of Holley will have the courage to stand up to the cruelty that flourishes at these events; they are our future.

      Patricia Jarrett
      Director of the Southwest Chapter of Witches Against Animal Abuse
      Tucson, AZ



    • CHEERS

      A Cheer to Knotts Berry Farm in Anaheim, the world’s oldest theme park, for adding a wide array of vegan items to their menus! According to Your Daily Vegan, “[s]ome of the tasty options coming are vegan, gluten-free, and soy-free baked mac n’ cheese, vegan and gluten-free pizza, and even vegan “buttermilk” battered “chicken” tenders!” Sounds good to us.

      The state of California and Gov. Jerry Brown have earned a Cheer for their defense of sharks; as-of July 1st, shark-fin soup is now illegal in that state! Tens of millions of sharks are killed each year for their fins as a flavorless ingredient in soup. So far Washington, Oregon and Guam have also banned shark-fin sales. Let’s hope more states follow suit, and the national Shark Conservation Act is strengthened to end the killing of sharks entirely.


      A sporty Jeer goes to the Clif Bar company, which started off with only vegan bars, but increasingly over time has added in more and more non-vegan products. The latest is their new line of ‘Builder’s Max’ bars, launched in July, which contain whey and milk protein. Apparently the plant-based protein in the popular Clif Builder Bar is considered inferior, and to get the ‘Max’ effect, you supposedly need animal protein.

      Tweet them at @ClifBar, search for them on Facebook, or call or mail them here and tell them you’re only interested in seeing them sell products that don’t harm animals:

      Clif Bar & Company
      1451 66th Street
      Emeryville, CA 94608-1004
      1-800-CLIFBAR (1-800-254-3227)

      Our final Jeer comes from member Gabrielle DiFonzo, who wrote to us:

      “I have a contender for the “Jeers” section of Act-ionLine’s “Cheers and Jeers.”  Did anyone at FoA see “The Bachelorette” this week? The whole cast were outfitted in Canada Goose jackets complete with dead coyotes on the hoods. Reality TV is tacky enough without being abusive toward animals.”

      Good call, Gabrielle! Canada Goose is a despicable company, with many down-filled jackets as well as using coyote fur! We’ve worked with Fur Bearer Defenders in Vancouver, Canada, on some campaigns against Canada Goose, and they just won’t stop. Besides posting comments on the Canada Goose Facebook page, or using the hashtag #CanadaGross, you can tweet to @BacheloretteABC on Twitter, or you can contact ABC and let them know that you don’t want to see Canada Goose or fur on television:

      Cathy Rehl
      Senior Publicity Director/Media Relations at ABC
      (212) 456-6749
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