Attn. NY fans

Here’s some fabulous concession news. Minor League baseball’s West Michigan Whitecaps have added a “4-pound, $20 burger consisting of five beef patties, five slices of cheese, almost a cup of chili and generous portions of salsa and corn chips on an 8-inch sesame seed bun,” according to an Associated Press report published yesterday. Isn’t that dandy?

Meanwhile, the New York Yankees did their media hype this week regarding the concession fare at their new stadium. According to a New York Times story, the new Yankee Stadium now features a Cuban stand, appealing to Latino fans, in addition to a stand that caters to Italian food fanciers, and an Asian stand with meat, noodles and sushi.

This raises a question: What about all the health conscious, vegetarian inclined Yankee fans? Or Mets fans, for that matter? We haven’t yet received confirmation that they will serve as much as a veggie dog or a veggie burger on either roster.   Check out the Yankees’ March 23 press release about their new concessions.  Usually, veggie dogs or burgers are listed under “Healthy Alternatives” in menu rosters.  Their listing consists of two items: a farmers market stand with fresh fruits and vegetables, and a stand with Kosher options.  While that’s wonderful, it still seems odd that the obvious vegetarian option of a veggie dog has not been placed on the menu, as well.

While we continue our discussions with the concession companies at both stadiums, we encourage everyone who is interested in eating a veggie dog (with chili on top?) or a veggie burger, to put in their two cents. They need to hear from you fans!

Their online contact forms are an option, but calls will be faster and more efficient.

Link to the online form for the Yankees.

The phone number for Yankee Stadium is (718) 213-4300.

Link to the online form for the Mets.

The phone number for Citi Field (it’ll still be called Shea by fans, of course:) (718) 507-TIXX

Call and ask for the person in charge of concessions, or the person in charge of guest or fan relations, or the person in charge of stadium operations. All of these individuals are appropriate to contact. Communicate with a smile and tell them about all the other ballparks that are offering these items. (You can tell them to check out the Phillies menu as an example.) Then, thank them for their time and consideration.

It takes customer feedback to bolster change. This is true for baseball stadiums, as it is for anything else. Take a few minutes on your end. We will keep you posted on ours. :))

Genesis Awards Menu

You gotta love it.  Whatever your usual diet may include, this is a meal that would knock your socks off.  Or gowns or tuxes, in this case!   The Genesis Awards take place tomorrow at the Beverly Hills Hilton and celebrities and other guests will be treated to the following vegan dinner menu:

Field Greens with Endive, Frisee, Grilled Artichoke Hearts, 
and Fanned Sliced Tomato Caper Aioli,
and Balsamic Vinaigrette
Gardein Chicken Scaloppini served with Miso Tofu,
Baby Bok Choy, Crisp Fried Asian Vegetables, and Black Risotto
Spiced Lemon Ginger Sauce
Raspberry Chocolate Tower Cake
with Chocolate Mousse, Fresh Berries, and Raspberry Coulis
If you’re not familiar with the Genesis Awards, they’re put on by what was once the Ark Trust, and is now the Hollywood branch of the Humane Society of the United States.  An excerpt from their website:

“Every year, the Genesis Awards pays tribute to the major news and entertainment media for producing outstanding works…, which raise public understanding of animal issues.  As much as film, television, print and the arts reflect societal attitudes, they also help shape and change those attitudes.  The mass media have the power to spotlight animal issues to vast audiences- literally at the speed of light.”

The Genesis Awards is a red carpet affair, very much like the other glitzy award ceremonies you see on T.V.  There are all kinds of media there and a variety of celebrities and notable individuals in attendance.  The awards will be taped tomorrow and we’ll announce the television air date as soon as it’s confirmed, so keep an eye out for that posting later.
For all of you attending tomorrow, bon appetit !

Obamas Plant White House Vegetable Garden

It was only two weeks ago that America’s Slow Food Guru, Alice Waters,  appeared on Sixty Minutes and mentioned her push to get the White House to create its own organic vegetable garden.  One week later, first lady Michelle Obama announced that they were doing just that!  

“While the organic garden will provide food for the first family’s meals and formal dinners, its most important role, Mrs. Obama said, will be to educate children about healthful, locally grown fruit and vegetables at a time when obesity and diabetes have become a national concern,” says the New York Times article.   

The digging began on a patch of the South Lawn last Friday, with the help of local elementary school children.  The garden will include 55 varieties of vegetables, all grown from organic seedlings.  Assistant White House chef Sam Kass is looking forward to making healthy meals from this garden.  He cooked for the Obamas in Chicago and is an advocate of local food.  

Reminder for baseball fans

This is the time to contact your ballparks if you want to make a menu suggestion for the coming season.  Note that several ballparks have contracts with new concession companies this year, so you might want to put in your two cents with the new management at your stadium.  Especially if they aren’t offering veggie dogs yet.  

Go to our Venue Reference Guide to get contact information for your favorite Major League Baseball team.  (Minor league teams and other venue links are also available there.)  
Let them know that veggie dogs are now available at 15 MLB stadiums, and counting!  Soy Happy has played a big part in making this possible.  We also promote new veggie menus through subscriber alerts, media notices and game outings.  They can contact us any time for assistance.
Don’t forget that as a fan, your voice makes a big difference!  Share your feedback today.  And let us know how it goes.  

Downer fight continues

We recently announced the encouraging news that President Obama had closed the loophole that allowed “downed” cattle to be dragged to slaughter.  (“Downed” animals, as a reminder,  are those that are unable to stand or walk due to sickness or injury.)  Though this permanent ban for cattle is very good news, it is important to emphasize that the plight of other “downed” animals continues.  

“Downed” sheep, goats, and pigs continue to be vulnerable.  Just ask Farm Sanctuary.  Their undercover investigators have come upon many of these animals suffering in stockyards and slaughter houses.  (The photo included here was taken during one such investigation.)
The time is now.   Contact the Secretary of Agriculture, Tom Vilsack and thank him for taking action for cattle.  Then, remind him that if cattle merit this ban, so do all other animals headed to slaughter.  Food safety and humane treatment are by no means issues that should limited to cattle alone.

National Conference on Childhood Obesity

 “Confronting the Epidemic through Nutrition Research and Policy”

Sponsors:  The Cancer Project, the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine, and the American College of Lifestyle Medicine, in partnership with Johns Hopkins Center for a Livable Future.
When:  Thursday, June 18 to Friday, June 19, 2009
Where:  Washington, D.C.
Intended audience includes health care professionals, researchers, dietitians, child advocates, education professionals, and more.  (Physicians, nurses and dietitians will get continuing education credit for attending this conference.)
From the website:
“Hear top scientists and policy experts share groundbreaking research and propose unique solutions to the childhood obesity epidemic.  Come prepared with questions for the premier roster of speakers who will present ideas for nutrition policy reform, practical propositions, and plans for community action.”
For more information and to register for this conference, click on the link above.

No more Downers

On Saturday, March 14, President Obama announced that the U.S. Department of Food and Agriculture would completely ban the practice of mishandling “downers” (animals too sick to stand or walk) in order to get them to slaughter.  Until now, there was a partial ban in place, but it had a loophole, which allowed ‘downed’ animals to be dragged to the slaughterhouse, even though these animals were diseased, ailing or injured.  The announcement of this permanent ban is huge news for these poor animals and for the human advocates who have tirelessly campaigned to stop this cruelty.  
Obama announced the ban as part of a speech on measures his administration is taking to address food safety in this country.   Read the Associated Press article, “Government bans ‘downer’ cows from food supply.”
Wayne Pacelle,  President and CEO of the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) announced the news in his blog, “A Humane Nation.”    Read “Case Finally Closed on Downers Loophole” and click on the links he provides, for more information.

Blogs of interest

Here’s a few blogs that we enjoy and thought you might also appreciate.  

Most of you are familiar with the comic strip Bizarro by Dan Piraro.  It runs in newspapers all across America.  If you enjoy Bizarro as much as we do, you have to check out Piraro’s blog.   He gives a little insight on the thinking behind the creation of his daily panel and offers his opinions on a variety of subjects with that one of a kind Piraro humor. 
The non-profit Farm Sanctuary has three blogs now.  Sanctuary Tails tells us about the individual animals at the farm; Making Hay updates us on their advocacy work for factory farmed animals; and Gene Baur’s Bloggings is a blog from its president and co-founder titled, “Changing Hearts and Minds About Animals and Food.”  
From the folks behind the popular ecorazzi,  a new blog has just been launched.  It’s called VegDaily for those “who are crazy obsessed with the vegetarian lifestyle!”  You’ll find all kinds of interesting and topical stories reflecting all aspects of vegetarian living.  We’re glad they’re out there!
We’ll keep sharing more blogs of interest as we come upon them.   Enjoy!

Niman Ranch warning

Many of you are familiar with Niman Ranch, based in Bolinas, California.   It’s a name that has been associated with humane, organic and sustainable farming.   Many of you may object to the idea that meat could ever be considered a meal with a conscience, but for those who refuse to give it up, Niman Ranch provided some solace. 

Well, be warned.  Niman Ranch is no longer what it used to be.  It was taken over in January and founder Bill Niman is angry about the direction that the new owners have taken with it.  In fact,  “he refuses to eat their products.”  
Read “Niman Ranch founder challenges new owners,” a featured article in the San Francisco Chronicle.