It's almost Christmas! If you're not quite ready for the big day, don't despair. We've found a couple of last-minute tricks that will help you prepare for the festive season. PETA have helpfully posted a list of Vegan Christmas Treats You Can Buy on the High Street, so if you're in need of some extra bits for your vegan Christmas, there's still time to shop. They've also posted a rather delicious and easy Vegan Cupcake Recipe which will help you make some amazing last-minute Xmas gifts or treats for the family.
There have been a few shining stories in vegan news this week. In Israel, Dominoes pizza announced that they're going to add a vegan pizza to their menu. Israel might be a little far away for delivery to the UK but it does show that if you ask, you can indeed get! If you're keen for your favourite stores to stock vegan favourites, be sure to send them an email. Ocado are especially good for listening to customer requests and you can find a range of vegan products there including Nakd bars and Cat & the Cream cupcakes. Yum!
Is that a Sheep Groomed like a Poodle?!
This photo came to our attention for all of the right reasons. Although we don't advocate grooming any animal in such a ridiculous fashion, this photo of a sheep groomed to look like a prize-winning poodle rather accurately depicts the double standards we have when it comes to domesticated animals.
The 'Blacker Sheep' photo was taken by Lernet and Stander Photography on commission for Dutch newspaper Volkskrant as an artistic representation of the 'black sheep of the family'. What they have inadvertently done is demonstrate society's bizarre relationship with animals and how we think of some animals as food and others as pets, with something as simple as grooming blurring the lines of our perceptions. The haircut was undertaken by award-winning Grooming Salon Agouti, who described it as 'a very nice and new experience'.
Eco Vegan Shoes Competition
We've teamed up with local Bath business The Spark - an ethical quarterly who promote a greener lifestyle - to give away 5 pairs of Eco Vegan Shoes. All you have to do to enter is send a photo demonstrating how you'd 'give leather the boot' with alternative uses for your old leather shoes. The competition is running until January 23rd 2014 and you can enter via The Spark website.
Alex Douglas Boxing Day Fundraiser for The Vegan Society
While we're enjoying a Boxing Day leftovers feast, one young vegan will be taking part in the Nippy Dippers challenge in Aberdeen. Alex Douglas is so passionate about living a vegan lifestyle that on Boxing Day she is going to be taking a rather cold dip in the North Sea to raise money for The Vegan Society. BRRR! We wish you the best of luck, Alex and hope that you have plenty of blankets and a hot toddy on standby to warm you up afterwards!
Alex is incredibly close to her £350 target but we'd love to see her smash it! You can donate at her Just Giving page, all proceeds will be given to The Vegan Society to help them continue their amazing work.
Angora Jumper and Accessories Cruelty - Update
We've seen some amazing action as a result of PETA's angora expose with many High Street retailers including H&M ceasing the production of angora products. Unfortunatelys not all stores have got their ethics in line. Zara provoked a backlash last week by failing to remove garments made from angora from their rails or provide comment on the cessation of angora sales.
Worse still, retailer Matalan have been covering up angora sales. A whistleblower has told the media that Matalan bosses have ordered staff to remove tags and displays that point out the angora content of some of their store items. The Mirror contacted Matalan about the cover-up and the instructions have since been revoked, with a Matalan spokesperson advising that the company has now suspended all angora orders. Well done, Matalan. Your dishonest sales tactics win you our vegan villain award.
The good news keeps flowing though. According to PETA's list of retailers who have stopped the sale of angora fur and wool, 9 companies have committed to never selling angora again, 9 companies have removed current stock as well as pledging to never sell angora again and 19 companies have suspended orders. You can still make a difference by appealing to stores still sourcing angora and those who are yet to commit to never selling angora again.