Annual Holiday Book and Bake Sale

Don’t wait until the last minute to get your holiday gifts – score some sweet savings at TVA’s annual Holiday Sale and Open House! Come & meet members of the Toronto Vegetarian Association’s Board of Directors, indulge in treats at our vegan bake sale and pick up holiday gifts from our Vegetarian Bookstore. We will also be accepting donations of non-perishable vegan food items to be donated to a local food bank, and encourage you to bring along an item or two! Special Deals! Isa Chandra Moskowitz’s two most recent, giant cookbooks (The Superfun Times Holiday Cookbook and Isa Does It!) on sale for only $30 including tax! (Reduced from $42 and $39) New $10 book section (and yes, that also includes tax) featuring: The Lucky Ones Pillars of Health Becoming Raw Gene Baur’s original Farm Sanctuary Raw Food for Dummies The Engine Food Diet Will Travel for Vegan Food The Complete Book of Raw Foods Where? TVA Resource Centre (17 Baldwin Street, 2nd floor). We regret that our resource centre is not wheelchair accessible. If you wish to purchase items from the bookstore and can not ascend the stairs,… Read More

Filed under: Community Front page post News from the Toronto Vegetarian Association

July Social Group Events

Social Dinner Group The Social Dinner Group will meet at Jean’s Vegetarian Kitchen on Saturday, July 18th at 7 pm (1262 Danforth Avenue). Join them for lively conversation and delicious food. Please RSVP to by the Wednesday before the event. Seating is limited. York Region Vegetarian Families Join them at Wishing Well Animal Sanctuary in Bradford on Saturday, July 27th from 11 am to noon to visit with rescued farm animals. RSVP to Veggie Drinks The Veggie Drinks Group is getting together on Saturday, July 13th at 6 pm. Location TBD! Click here to visit their Facebook page and find out more. East End Vegetarians On Wednesday, August 7th at 7 PM the East End Vegetarians are meeting at the Mumbai House Restaurant (1698 Queen St. East, at Kingston Rd). Please contact Susan at by Monday, August 5th to RSVP. Durham Veg The Durham Veg Group has two events coming up in August! A dinner at Jasmine Garden (10 Meadowglen Drive in Whitby), Durham’s only vegetarian restaurant on Wednesday, August 7th at 6:30 pm. RSVP by Monday, August 5th. Sunday, August 18th at 3 pm they’ll also be holding a… Read More

Filed under: Community

Vegetarian Travel Translation Cards and Glossaries

Thanks to the bright ideas of TVA volunteer extraordinaire Sally Grande, TVA is proud to announce the release of vegetarian travel translation cards! These cards serve the purpose of allowing you to dine as you travel the world and face language barriers. The cards say in both English and their respective language: “I am vegan. Please make sure there is no meat, no fish or fish sauce, no milk, no butter, no cheese, no milk powder or meat broth in my food”. Present the card to your server when traveling in another country and feel confident that your diet is understood. The travel cards are available in the TVA Resource Centre or can be downloaded and printed from the links below. Dutch Travel Card Hindi Travel Card Spanish Travel Card Korean Travel Card Italian Travel Card French Travel Card Greek Travel Card Chinese Travel Card Farsi Travel Card Vegan Passport The Vegan Society in the UK also sells a printed “Vegan Passport”, which translates similar phrases in dozens of global languages. Click here to purchase… Read More

Filed under: Community Resource Centre Travelling

Animal Advocacy: A Photographic Journey with Joanne McArthur

  Care of Dylan Powell I can’t remember the first time I consciously gazed upon a photograph taken by Jo-Anne McArthur, I had unknowingly seen her work for years, but I do remember the first time we met. It was almost a year ago at the Farm Sanctuary Hoe Down in Watkins Glen, New York and Jo-Anne greeted me as if we had been old friends. Her friendliness and openess are two things which you recognize immediately upon meeting her. Jo-Anne’s photographic work has taken her around the globe, working tirelessly for grassroots organizations all the way up to large international organizations. Her work with the project, We Animals, is her attempt to use those skills to bring our relationships with animals to light. To be frank, her work is a nightmare that very few could endure. It regularly includes investigations and forces her to be present in the face of extreme desecration and brutality. For this reason alone, Jo-Anne is a inspiration to me. Back to our first meeting. A highlight of the Hoe Down weekend is the Dance on Saturday night. The People Barn is loaded full of vegans from across North America and Gene Baur, Farm Sanctuary… Read More

Filed under: Animal Advocacy Community elifelines

Animal Advocacy: Smooth Sailing Into Veganism

  Julia and her happy, healthy family Care of Julia Strub My name is Julia and I’ve been eating a vegan diet since April 4th 2010. Being vegetarian has always appealed to me and I had even made an attempt at lacto-ovo vegetarianism in 2002. Back then I didn’t have the information or support to maintain a vegetarian diet and so I fell back into my old beliefs about how humans needed meat, eggs, and milk to thrive. Several months before switching to veganism in 2010 those beliefs were challenged by a wonderful vegan friend. I was lucky enough to be directed to fantastic books like The China Study, Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease, and Becoming Vegan. These were life altering books that I highly recommend to any curious omnivore. They gave me an incredible sense of relief knowing that not only was living without animal products possible, but it was IDEAL for human health. Imagine, by simply changing the way you eat you can save animals from suffering and death, AND save yourself from all the diseases of affluence like diabetes, cancer and heart disease! I was ready to ease myself into this new way of… Read More

Filed under: Animal Advocacy Community elifelines

Animal Advocacy: Touring Ontario’s Factory Farms

Submitted Anonymously Many vegetarians know about the abhorrent treatment of animals on factory farms. In fact, the treatment of farm animals is so bad that it is the reason many of us adopt vegetarian and vegan diets in the first place. Because we are so horrified by what we hear and read about factory farms, most of us would rather avoid them. Not Sam. In order to learn about the treatment of farm animals firsthand, Sam has been visiting animal farms in Canada so that he can observe how they operate. This is difficult emotionally because Sam’s interest in animal advocacy arises out of empathy for all sentient beings, so it is challenging for him to witness animal suffering. Also, the trips are taxing physically because of how cold the farms are in the dead of winter – on many a night, he shivered to sleep in rooms with no heating. Sam has visited 12 animal farms since he began investigating, half of which were factory farms; the rest were small farms. “These visits have strengthened my resolve to advocate for animals,” he says. What was most surprising to him in all his trips? “The farmers are wonderful people who… Read More

Filed under: Animal Advocacy Animal Issues Community elifelines

Animal Advocacy: Ducklover Bonnie (aka: Bonnie Shulman)

  Bonnie’s beloved ducks Brownie and Greenie. Care of Nelson Carvalho Bonnie Shulman is a member of the TVA, former eLifelines columnist (Animal Profile of the Month) and a colleague of mine at the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB). You can easily tell that she’s a vegan by the massive number of Farm Sanctuary posters on her cubicle walls. She’s a frequent donor to that organization and to many other organizations that promote veganism. Bonnie is well known here in the Communications Division for her veganism and love of animals, particularly ducks. In fact, she tells me that it was after making her first duck friend that she went vegan.   Bonnie has developed such personal relationships with some of them that she can call them by name, and they respond. Last June, Bonnie rescued a family of ducklings from a well. You can see the video here. She keeps a close eye on the ducks in the High Park Zoo, and noticed a duck who needed special care before the zookeepers did. The Pekin Duck hen was haggard and her feathers were in disarray, suggesting overmating by other residents of the duck pen. Bonnie waited hours… Read More

Filed under: Animal Advocacy Community elifelines

Animal Advocacy: Toronto Pig Save

Know someone you want to nominate for the Animal Advocacy Profile? Tell us about someone in the community doing inspiring work for animals.   Photo care of Susan Morris Toronto Pig Save: Giving Slaughterhouses Windows Care of Anita Kranjc Nobel laureate John Coetzee has his protagonist in the self-titled novel, Elizabeth Costello, give a university lecture on “The Philosophers and the Animals.” She tells her audience: “‘I was taken on a drive around Waltham this morning. It seems a pleasant enough town. I saw no horrors, no drug-testing laboratories, no factory farms, no abattoirs. Yet I am sure they are here. They must be. They simply do not advertise themselves. They are all around us as I speak, only we do not, in a certain sense, know about them.” The slaughterhouses are here in Toronto, too – downtown and in the outskirts.      Art by Sue Coe   Quality Meat Packers (QMP) is located in the downtown core, off King and Bathurst, at 2 Tecumseh. You get a good panoramic view of the colossal QMP industrial complex if you stand on the hills of Fort York and direct your gaze across the railway lines. Walking with… Read More

Filed under: Animal Advocacy Community elifelines

How to Host a Vegan Challenge

by Marco Pagliarulo The Vegan Challenge (or vegan pledge) is a good way for “veg-curious” people to try a vegan diet for a short time in a fun environment under the guidance of a vegan who already knows the ropes.  One of the barriers to exploring vegan food in our society is the myth that vegan food is weird. A Vegan Challenge is also a great opportunity to dispel that myth. Back in April, I hosted a Vegan Challenge at my workplace (Ontario Ministry of the Environment) where I invited colleagues to adopt a vegan diet for 1 week.  About a dozen coworkers signed on.  This was part of a collective initiative of the Toronto Vegetarian Association (TVA), Toronto Pig Save, and to encourage people to take the Vegan Challenge during Earth Week. If you are vegan, then you already know that adopting a plant-based diet is a healthy, compassionate, delicious choice that has lighter eco-footprint on the planet. Why not spend a week showcasing this conscientious choice to a few of those around you? Here are some tips to get you started: 1.    Pick a Place Pick a place where you spend time on a regular basis,… Read More

Filed under: Animal Advocacy Community elifelines Veggie Challenge Stories & News

Animal Advocacy Profile: Camille Labchuk

Making the Personal Political   Interview with Animal Activist: Camille Labchuk Care of Shannon Kornelson and Anna Pippus We know you were a vegetarian before you became vegan. Can you tell us about how you made the leap and why? Is there anything about being vegan that surprised you, either negatively or positively? I became a vegetarian when I was 12, but it wasn’t until years later that I began to hear about veganism and consider the ethical implications of eggs and dairy. I knew I would eventually become a vegan, and I tried it out a few times, but somehow I always lapsed back into old habits. What finally did it for me was travelling to Atlantic Canada to document the commercial seal hunt with an international animal protection organization. Being surrounded for weeks with so many vegan animal activists gave me the push I needed to finally kick bad habits to the curb, and I’ve never looked back.  I’ve never been able to find anything negative about going vegan, but I’ve been surprised by the warmth and generosity of the amazingly supportive vegan community in every city where I’ve ever lived. What is one thing you wish people… Read More

Filed under: Animal Advocacy Animal Issues Community