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Twin Cities Pet Expo Outreach

The Melissas make a great team!

Thanks to all the volunteers who staffed the ARC booth at the two-day Pet Expo at the Minneapolis Convention Center. We had 91 people view a video about the treatment of animals on farms and gave out over 800 pieces of literature. Great job, ARC Outreach Team!

Watching the video

ARC is partnering with FARM on the Pay Per View Program, an innovative new outreach strategy where people are offered $1.00 to watch a 4-minute video. Pay Per View exposes the public to the harsh reality of animal agriculture in a way that most other outreach cannot. With headphones on and a privacy enclosure around the screen, viewers are intimately engaged in what they are seeing. Viewers often tear up or become angry after watching the video, and our volunteers turn that passion into action by encouraging them to decrease their consumption of animal products and work towards a vegan diet. Follow-up surveys demonstrate that over 50% of respondents reduced animal product consumption after watching the video.

Foie Gras in the Twin Cities: Unwanted by Restaurant Patrons and Bad for Ducks

ARC’s Forego Foie Gras campaign received a grant from the Humane Research Council to research attitudes toward foie gras among Twin Cities diners. The results of the survey overwhelmingly prove that Minnesotans oppose this cruel product and prefer to patronize foie gras free establishments. Three-quarters (74%) of Twin Cities residents support a ban on foie gras production in the state of Minnesota, and after learning about how foie gras is produced, nearly half (45%) of respondents said they would avoid dining at restaurants that serve foie gras. Read more about the survey results.

ExtraVEGANza at Whole Foods Minnetonka

On Saturday, March 31 from 10:30am to 2:30pm, the Animal Rights Coalition is joining Whole Foods Market in Minnetonka (1001 Plymouth Road, Minnetonka, MN) to create a day dedicated to sampling and learning about vegan food and the importance of compassion towards animals.

Speak Up for Minnesota Dogs and Cats

Senate File (S.F.) 462 and House File (H.F.) 702, known as the Dog and Cat Regulation Bill, were the bills introduced in 2011 for the 2011-2012 Minnesota Legislative Session to license and regulate commercial dog and cat breeders in Minnesota. The session ended on May 10, 2012 and neither bill was granted a hearing. The bills did not progress and were not voted on. A new bill to license and regulate commercial dog and cat breeders will be introduced in January 2013 for the 2013-2014 Minnesota Legislative Session.

Even though the 2011-2012 session has ended, legislators still welcome input from constituents during the interim. Please know that re-districting and the upcoming November 2012 election may change who represents you. Find contact information for your legislators and call, write or email them. Tell them you’re a constituent and are contacting them about inhumane dog and cat breeding in the State of Minnesota and the fact that Minnesota has no state laws to regulate commercial dog and cat breeders. Ask them to support legislation to license, inspect, and enforce standards of care for commercial dog and cat breeders in Minnesota. Read more about this issue and puppy and kitten mills in Minnesota here.

ARC Holiday Open House Recipes

White Chili with Homemade Tortilla Chips & Cilantro/Lime Mock Sour Cream

By popular demand, here is the recipe for the the delicious and easy to make White Chili with Homemade Tortilla Chips & Cilantro/Lime Mock Sour Cream served at the December ARC holiday open house by Rhymes With Vegan Chef Meagan Holtgrewe, and the Layered Vegan Taco Dip and Mini Taco Salads that were served. Enjoy!

Oppose the Ag-Gag!

The “ag-gag” bills, S.F. 1118/H.F. 1369, are still alive when the Minnesota Legislature convenes January 24 and may come up for hearings this session.. These bills would make it illegal for someone to enter a farm or animal-producing facility and take videos or photos without the owner’s permission. The bills would make even just possessing and distributing these videos or photos a crime. The bills did not pass in 2011 because many people, including the news media, thought they were unconstitutional.

Fur Free Friday and Compassionate Caroling!

We had a great start to the fur protest season with Fur Free Friday at Ribnick’s the day after Thanksgiving (see the photo of our youngest protester, Grace), and we kept up the momentum with compassionate caroling in December where carolers raised their voices against the cruel fur trade.

Grilling Without Killing at Gopher Tailgating

The ARC volunteer team again showed Gopher football fans that vegan grilling can be delicious as 478 fans tried something new at the first conference game of the season. We passed out samples of Tofurky brats and So Delicious vegan ice cream sandwiches. We were well received and had a great time offering samples and literature to folks as they went off to cheer for the home team. We especially loved all the comments people made about the food tasting better than they thought it would. It was encouraging to see vegan food get such good reviews from die-hard tailgaters.