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Monday, October 19, 2009

What is PVC

PVC stands for processed vegan crap. You know the kind of awful stuff that comes in boxes and packages and has colored labels, big ads in veggie magazines and such. Usually PVC imitates PC (processed crap made from animal sources) in the form of fake meat and imitations of other items that vegans supposedly want to avoid. Many people believe that being vegan means that you go from consuming processed crap to processed vegan crap and suddenly you are a better person. True, you might be saving animals by consuming PVC but what about your own health, the health of the workers and farmers producing PVC and the health of the planet that results from producing and consuming pvc? Problem is most PVC is produced by the same people who produce PC and thus we are falling into the same trap of consumption, supporting the same problematic system, even if we choose to remove animal products from our diet.

Another part of the problem, especially for those of us who grow up in the United States is we are raised to have a mindless and endless desire to consume mediocre products made by mega corporations. As soon as they put us in front of a television as babies, we are barraged with being told what to listen to, look like, eat, etc. Thus if one changes their diet from omnivore to herbivore, they simply look for what corporations are offering them and settle for what they are "told" to consume and that is usually the latest fake meat, fake cheese, fake margarine, and other highly processed products. An awareness of the larger picture of food consumption has to look at the even greater picture of mass advertising and other forms of control. And this is a very complicated issue and i suggest looking at writers such as Michael Pollan for some well written insights into this problem.

One of the aims of making this blog is to help others realize that PVC not only tastes like crap but when it comes down to it, there is no need for it. And if you want to avoid eating meat, something i can certainly understand for a variety of reasons, why do you want to eat a simulation of meat? But that question is a very long, complicated one and perhaps will be addressed in a different post.

Make your own is always my motto and it is much easier than you think! Yes, it takes time but you eat every day, usually a few times a day so dont you owe it to yourself and the planet to stop and take this daily activity very serious? If being "green" is a concern, then your daily activities must be taken into consideration if you want to really live a "green" lifestyle that is real, not one that is about posturing. If you have a family or friends, getting together to produce many ingredients can be quite fun as well as save you money and make you and the planet a lot healthier. Young children often take great joy in producing food and doing this puts them in a direct relationship with their nutritional intake. Raising families to know food comes from the earth is far different than thinking food comes from a box or a fast food restaurant.

Let us take a frequently consumed item that many vegans drink and use for recipes; soymilk. Soymilk is incredibly easy to make at home, especially if you purchase a soy milk making machine. This machine saves you time from making soymilk the old fashioned way, is not expensive (it pays for itself very fast), and will greatly reduce your ecological impact on the world. Each box of PVC soymilk travels a great distance to get to your store and then home. Most PVC soymilk is made from Geneticaly modified, inorganic soybeans and has sugars and all kinds of other nasty things added. Soymilk should contain only 2 ingredients, organic non-gmo beans and water, especially when using in recipes. Perhaps if you drink it, then you can add some of your own flavors such as agave, maple, vanilla extract, cocoa powder, etc. Using your imagination and your palette will give you all kinds of interesting results.

For years i have been using machines from (no i do not own or work or have any affiliation, simply a content customer, passing on a good idea). For a few dimes, i produce the highest quality soymilk, saving me lots of money and i do not have to recycle boxes or even have the boxes made in the first place! i purchase 25 pound bags of organic soybeans grown in California for about 35 dollars (and rising!). Only takes a half a cup of beans to produce a liter of soymilk. Do the math and see the savings. Taste the difference! And again, if environmental issues are important to you (and i cant imagine why they would not be!), see the vast difference in how you consume effects others.

For those who are concerned about animal rights, please do some research on the companies who produce your PVC and you will be surprised how many soymilk companies, veg burger companies, etc are owned by the dairy and meat industry. So if you think consuming these products is helping your cause, you may want to research whose pockets you are feeding. Who owns Silk, Morningstar Farms, Whole Foods, etc?

As i said, one of the goals of this blog is to help you remove PVC from your lives.

eat and be well!