Eatsa Elbows Into The Fast-Food Market…Using Quinoa

A tiny team of quinoa fans are trying to reinvent the entire fast-food experience — and they’re doing it without meat:

Their secret? It’s science, not just more fat and salt. They undertook a roughly two-year process of collecting and analyzing data on consumer taste preferences, and engineering a taste experience—naturally, and without excessive fat, sodium, or sugar—with the addictive qualities of the best fast food. They use a few varieties of quinoa (red and white). For some dishes, they toast it, others they stir-fry it, and others they make it into a kind of backed quinoa “stuffing.” It’s delicious enough to eat plain—then, they add the fixings.

TBH, I’m not entirely sure that the “server-free” model will work. I don’t understand why they wouldn’t want customers to see the people making food, apart from some annoying architectural imperative to keep the look of the place clean and sleek and uncluttered with staff.  To me, it sounds kind of corny and Jetsons-ish. (There’s a reason the automat failed.) Seems like a design “miss” in my book.

But I could definitely see this working like, say, cafes in Italy, where you pay a cashier, and someone makes your order, based on the receipt in your hand.

And no meat anywhere in sight? I’m in.


Are All Animals Cecil?

Here’s a very provocative article about the uproar surrounding the murder of Cecil the lion and what it means for vegans. I don’t agree with everything the author says, but I’m very, very happy that we have people like her to say it.


Minnesota Dentist Walter Palmer Has Killed One Of Zimbabwe’s Most Famous Lions

Utterly despicable:

Cecil the lion – the most famous creature in one of Zimbabwe‘s national parks – was killed by an American hunter who has boasted about shooting a menagerie of animals with his bow and arrow, The Telegraph can reveal.

Walter Palmer, a dentist from Minnesota, is believed to have paid £35,000 to shoot and kill the much-loved lion with a bow and arrow. The animal was shot on July 1 in Hwange National Park. Two independent sources have confirmed the hunter’s identity to the paper, which has also seen a copy of the relevant hunting permit.

Interestingly, the coward has taken down his website, but his Yelp page is still going strong. Make yourself at home.


Today’s Read: “Why I’m An Animal Rights Activist When There Is So Much Human Suffering In The World”

Good reading, via The Dodo:

All of these human and nonhuman beings suffer terribly. All of them are worthy of our compassion. I have always wanted to help them all. I still do. But the reason I choose to dedicate the majority of my time to advocating for nonhuman animals rather than all of those deserving humans is that we as a society all basically agree on human rights.

When I say we as a society, I do not mean the moral outliers of the international community like members of ISIS, or those in our own society like rapists or serial killers, but those who represent the dominant ethic in the world community, the law abiding members of our society and the international community. And according to that dominant ethic, it is wrong to abuse woman and children. It is wrong to murder innocent men. When we see humans who are starving or being exploited, raped, kidnapped, murdered or tortured, we believe it is wrong. Most governmental bodies around the world, non-government organizations (NGOs), and individuals agree that it is wrong to cause intense physical or emotional pain and suffering to human beings. We criminalize such harm, and we punish those who commit these crimes.

The same cannot be said of animals, especially not farmed animals, whose abuse is accepted by the same moral community that rejects the abuse of humans.


Do Animals Feel Pain? Yes, But To Treat It, We Need To Be Able To Measure It

Here’s a really interesting article on pain in animals. The title is a little misleading because, of course animals feel pain. The point here is that in order to treat animal pain and make their lives better, we have to be able to identify it and measure it. In short, I guess, we have to be able to communicate with animals:

These findings and much other work are being incorporated into tools to evaluate animal pain, because in the words of Lord Kelvin, the great Glaswegian scientist behind the Kelvin temperature scale, said: “When you cannot measure it, when you cannot express it in number … you have scarcely, in your thoughts, advanced to the stage of science, whatever the matter may be”.

So in order to treat and manage pain effectively we must measure it.

And there is a huge demand for these tools. The Glasgow Composite Pain Scale, a simple tool to measure acute pain in dogs and first published in 2007, has been translated into six languages. It is used in veterinary practices to measure pain to treat it effectively. It has also been used to evaluate the effectiveness of new analgesic drugs that are being developed by animal health companies. Tools to measure the impact of chronic pain, such as osteoarthritis, on the quality of life of dogs are now available and are a significant advance in managing chronic conditions.

There is now a global effort to raise awareness of pain in animals. Recently the World Small Animal Veterinary Association launched the Global Pain Council and published a treatise for vets and animal keepers worldwide to promote pain recognition, measurement and treatment. Dogs may be man’s best friend, but for all those who work with, care for and enjoy the company of animals, understanding how their pain feels is essential to improving the quality of their lives.


Hayden The Rescued Pig Bears The Scars Of Cosmetic & Medical Experiments

Earlier this week California’s Harvest Home Animal Sanctuary came to the rescue of 16 pigs that had been used for biomedical research. It’s a beautiful, beautiful thing.

Not so beautiful? One of the pigs — Hayden, the only male — still bears the scars of experiments that researchers conducted. If you ever wanted proof that this kind of thing is not okay, here it is.

Look, I understand the need for medical testing. (Cosmetic testing? Not so much.) But surely there are many, many more ways to do this without using animals. I’m not a researcher, and I don’t know what kind of lives those people lead, but I don’t think I could live with myself after doing something like this.