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Build Your Own Cruelty-Free Cheese & Charcuterie Board

Animal Justice December 19, 2018

The holiday season is upon us!

For many, this time of year represents peace, love and joy. But for animals confined on Canadian farms, there’s nothing kind or joyful about this time of year.

Tragically, holiday feasts often fuel the nightmare that is modern farming. Cows used for dairy are forcibly impregnated, have their babies stolen, and are sent to slaughter when their milk production declines. Animals killed for meat suffer from the day they are born until the day they are trucked to slaughter—often confined for their entire lives in dark barns, are denied everything that’s natural to them, and are killed at only a fraction of their natural lifespan.

But with so many plant-based holiday treat options available, it’s possible to have exciting seasonal eats without the cruelty!

We’ve teamed up with plant-based chef Amy Longard to bring you this incredible guide to building your own animal-free holiday cheese and charcuterie board!

Below are Amy’s top brand choices and products to make a compassionate spread of your own:

Cheeses – Daiya (Farmhouse Blocks), Culchered, Earth Island, Field Roast (CHAO Creamery), GUSTA, Happy Heart Vegan Gourmet, Miyoko’s Creamery, Nuts For Cheese, Truffula (available in Edmonton, Alberta), Vegan Stokes, VegCheese, VegNature, Violife, and Fauxmagerie Zengarry.

Meat Alternatives – Beyond Meat, Field Roast, GUSTA, Tofurky, Real Fake Meats (available in Halifax, Nova Scotia), The Very Good Butchers, and Yam Chops.

Fruits – Grapes, berries, cherries, ground cherries, pomegranate, clementines, and dried fruits like figs, raisins, cranberries or apricots.

Watch how we constructed our vegan cheese & charcuterie board!

Veggies – Olives, sliced raw vegetables, pickled or fermented vegetables (beets, onions, gherkin pickles are always popular), roasted red pepper, roasted garlic, black garlic, etc.

Dips & Spreads – Grainy mustard, hummus, bruschetta, salsa, chutney, jams, maple syrup, and compotes. Check out Amy’s  fig & olive tapenade and zucchini almond dip.

Nuts & Seeds I like walnuts, pumpkin seeds, candied pecans, tamari almonds, and pistachios.

Dark chocolate – Can’t go wrong here!

Bread & Crackers – French baguette and/or a mix of crackers including Mary’s Gone Crackers, Le Pain des fleurs Crispbread, and more.

Decor –  We used pine cones, holly and ivy, pine branches and of course a few nice cutting boards and decorative bowls. Things like micro greens or delicate leafy greens look pretty. You can also use festive household items like mini-lights, ornaments, candles, or whatever you have on hand to jazz up your board.

Many of the above-mentioned cheeses and meat alternatives are available throughout Canada and the US at health food stores, Whole Foods Markets, and most major grocery stores. In Canada, you can also order plant-based cheeses online via Vegan Supply and Yam Chops.

If you’re stuck on what to make for your holiday dinner, be sure to download Amy Longard’s Healthy Holidays eBook. CLICK HERE to get your digital copy. Happy snacking!

 

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These Eight Cruelty-Free Canadian Coats Will Keep You Warm This Winter

Animal Justice November 24, 2017

Winter’s coming to Canada! Temperatures are plummeting, and many of us are scrambling to buy a new winter coat in preparation for the deep freeze that lies ahead. Tragically, some jacket and parka brands still use down fill for insulation, wool for fabric, and fur for decoration. For every animal-based parka purchased, an estimated 12 – 15 animals lose their lives.

Animals killed for fur and down parka

Animals killed and skinned for their fur suffer miserable deprivation on fur farms, and are ripped from their families in the wild by cruel traps and snares. Legal killing methods in Canada include gassing, electrocution, drowning, crush traps, strangulation, and head bashing.

Meanwhile, abuse runs rampant in the down industry, with recent undercover footage shot in Canada showing sensitive geese brutalized before having their throats slit open.

What’s a compassionate consumer to do? If you’re in the market for an animal-friendly winter coat, look no further than the Canadian companies in this handy guide.

Synthetic materials don’t contribute to animal cruelty, but animal-free alternatives also outperform down and fur—on warmth, sustainability, and of course, animal welfare.

(Note: All of these brands are fur-free, but some use faux fur trim. Be careful—not everyone can tell your trim is faux. The best option may be to avoid the look altogether.)

1. Wuxly Movement – Toronto

Wuxly Movement was founded by former CFL player James Yurichuk and his best friend, Anthony DeBartolo in 2012. Wully’s stylish jackets are made in Toronto and are entirely animal-free. Thanks to PrimaLoft insulation, a military-grade technology which outperforms down, it’s easy to feel invincible in the brisk Canadian weather. Bonus: The Animal Justice team has tried these parkas first-hand and believes they are a total game-changer!

 

 

 

2. Noize – Montreal

Noize is a cruelty-free outerwear brand offering high-quality jackets. Their signature materials include 100% polyester, faux fur, and vegan leather.

Animal-friendly with a stylish focus. What’s not to love?

 

 

 

 

Artizia vegan cruelty-free parka

3. Aritzia – Vancouver

Known across Canada for bold and luxurious design, it’s pleasantly surprisingly to see Aritzia emphasize cruelty-free outerwear options. Check out Aritzia’s online store and use the ‘vegan’ search filter to easily navigate their animal-friendly options. Bonus: Aritzia also offers clothing made with vegan suede and leather!

 

 

 

 

4. Le Château – MontrealLe Chateau vegan cruelty-free puffer

Le Chateau is committed to fur-free fashion, and features sleek European styles. Their collection of puffer coats look especially cozy, and there are a variety of cruelty-free selections using synthetic materials like polyester and nylon.

 

 

 

 

5. Arc’teryx – Vancouverarcteryx cruety-free vegan jacket

This brand knows the outdoors. Arc’teryx was founded by climbers with a vision—to create apparel helping adventure-seekers explore nature in all weather conditions. Arc’teryz is completely fur-free, and has many down-free options as well.

 

 

 

 

6. Mountain Equipment Co-op – Vancouver

Athletically focused and durably made, MEC are experts in preparing people for the harsh weather. The brand is fur-free and has many down-free options. Some coats feature Hyperloft, which is a powerful, eco-synthetic insulation. Their styles with a practical purpose are a great option for combatting the cold.

 

 

7. Lolë – Montreal

Specializing in women’s activewear with versatile and high-performance garments, Lolë features some trendy options to keep warm. All of the fur on their coats is faux, but those styles tend to use down. Steer in the direction of their clean cut looks which use Thermaglow as a synthetic insulator.

 

 

 

8. Frank & Oak – Montreal

Frank & Oak recently released several cruelty-free and eco-friendly jackets. These sturdy coats are made with 3M Thinsulate or Primaloft insulation. Both of these technologies outperform down—and that’s something to squawk about!

 

 

 

 

 

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Yes, I want to stay in touch! 

Animal Justice

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