Poppy from BunnyKitchen.com – Guest Hosting Today ♥


I am thrilled to be sharing a post today from blogger, animal welfare advocate and all around fabulous girl – Poppy of Bunny Kitchen fame. Poppy’s blog posts are always filled with wonderful food, of course.  But I love how she’s not afraid to say it as she sees it.  Her posts have a kindness that she also mixes with the realities of a meat-eating world.  I love her honesty as much as her recipe magic ♥
Poppy has written up a beautiful article with some thoughts about Vegan life and how she lives it.
Welcome to Canned Time Poppy!
 Poppy and Kitty for Canned Time
 

I’m Poppy and I am the writer of Bunny Kitchen. I am honoured to be sharing with you today on this stunning platform hosted by such a wonderful writer and vegan food extraordinaire, Angela.

 
I am a student studying for a degree in Animal Management with a dream of working in animal rescue. I like to rescue the overlooked animals in need, like the bunnies and rodents. I have been a vegetarian since the age of six and turned vegan about three years ago. The core of my vegan lifestyle is for animals, as it should be for any vegan. Veganism is a choice of ethics. Whilst the numerous other benefits of veganism are very real, they alone do not make up the values needed to be a vegan. Veganism is about being against the exploitation of animals.
 
As soon as I realised what my chicken nuggets actually were as a child, I refused to eat it, thankfully with a supportive mother who grew up in the 60’s and 70’s and was no stranger to vegetarianism. She did, of course, think it was a child’s phase, but only time would show that it was not, but a lifestyle I will take to my grave. Similarly, as soon as I learned of the horrors of dairy, eggs, honey, wool and other animal products, I swiftly gave it all up, without stumble. I am in no way perfect, I have a whole host of bad habits, but when it comes to animal welfare, I have a willpower beyond willpower.
 
I started Bunny Kitchen shortly before transitioning to a vegan diet, originally called Poppy’s Patisserie, it has evolved quite a lot to become the blog it is today. It started initially as a place to record my baking adventures after finding my way out of a year of a deep, life-holding depression. Unintentionally, baking became a release, a hobby, a passion, and I wanted to share my love and dreamed of having even a single reader one day. Now, after a few years of evolution, Bunny Kitchen is finally where it is to settle, a fully vegan blog where I share mainly recipes, some DIY and crafts and inspirational animal stories that move me.
 
I am particularly fond of wildlife, and am passionate about highlighting their plight, especially as a result of human lifestyles. I volunteer at a fantastic wildlife rehabilitation hospital, Folly Wildlife Trust based in Kent, UK. Here we love and respect every species, and defy popular misconceptions, offering support and rehabilitation to even the unsung vermin of our world.
 
I wanted to share with the readers of Canned Time a little of the often overlooked aspects of veganism and suffering of animals which can easily fall to the back-row behind the cows, sheep and pigs that are so often associated with veganism. I hope you can take something away from this, even if just a moment of thought.
 
Thank you so much for the opportunity Angela.
 
Poppy's signature
 

What does it mean to be a vegan? Veganism has become more mainstream and fashionable in recent times with people finding interest in plant based diets for health improvements and for weight loss. The celebrity hype has heightened the trend with names such as Mike Tyson joining the vegan train for weight loss and Kevin Eubanks for health. On the other end of the spectrum, we have the likes of Russell Brand, Tobey Maguire and Ellen DeGeneres who have embraced the ethics of veganism. Yet, probably the biggest celebrity vegan story of the past year was Jay-Z and Beyonce’s venture into a vegan challenge which saw Beyonce strutting into vegan restaurants wearing dead animals.

So this begs the question, is the essence of veganism as it was intended being lost amongst all this celebrity publicity?

When I read the commentaries on Beyonce’s infamous vegan eatery fashion choices, the most prominent conclusion I find is that, there’s no surprise, she is not vegan, simply eating animal product free for 22 days.

vegan fad

 

Now that’s great, anyone who doesn’t consume animal products or who reduces their consumption is making a huge difference. But that alone does not make a person vegan. There is no such thing as a non-ethical vegan, we can see this from the Vegan Society’s definition;

“Veganism is a way of living which seeks to exclude, as far as is possible and practicable, all forms of exploitation of, and cruelty to, animals for food, clothing or any other purpose.”

This means, that as far as possible, to call ourselves vegans, we must be aware of and avoid all kinds of animal exploitation and cruelty. What is often overlooked is the indirect suffering imposed upon animals. 

Most of us think of the cows and pigs and other food stock species; many of us consider animal exploitations in zoos, circuses and the like; but it appears much fewer of us consider the wildlife that suffer as a result of farming industries both for animal products and the crops that they and we eat. Some even eat animal products such as honey and still call themselves vegans.

 

So, to highlight the plight of wildlife, here’s a little insight into the suffering of otters in Britain. 

The otter has rapidly declined in Britain (50% decrease from historical numbers) as a result of agricultural chemicals used for sheep dips and to treat wool and as an insecticide. The chemicals accumulated in the food chain affecting carnivorous predators such as the otter and poisoned the waters in which they lived. They would die a slow and painful death as a result of direct poisoning, perhaps leaving behind orphans (only the mother cares for the pups) who then die from inexperience and a need to suckle for 6 months, or they starve from lack of food due to poisoned waters and thus lack of fish.

 

Like many species’, their habitats were destroyed for intensive farming systems and to build infrastructure. A range of conservation efforts such as captive breeding and reintroduction programmes has seen numbers of Eurasian otters increase in Britain, but for how long? Some argue that there is a natural recovery beyond the aid of conservationists, but even if this is the case, the issues that caused the crash are still very present, with cases of otter poisoning still upon us. There are even intentional poisonings by recreational fisherman who selfishly want the otters primary food source for themselves. So how long until we see our wonderful yet fragile otter population disappear again, and perhaps this time for good?

 

As vegans and just as humans, we need to be aware of the species’ we share our space with, both our immediate surroundings and our world, for we all have a part to play and a right and reason to be here.

 otter

I’d like to stay

 

I am an otter and I like to play

I live around waters and I’d like to stay

But a few years ago the humans made us go away

The chemicals in the water

The chemicals in our food

All for greed, they killed my daughter;

 

They banned the toxins, but then added more

They want us to be abundant, but what for?

They wrecked our homes, then wondered why we were no more;

 

Now we are coming back

And we’d like to stay

But the humans just keep pushing us away

You don’t need those chemicals

People were fine before

As were we, when we too had a world to explore.

 

Be kind, think beyond the obvious, our actions affect a whole range of species, not just the cows and chickens we oppose to slaughter, but the wildlife who receive the indirect effects. The plants, the bees, the beetles, the butterflies, all make up our ecosystems to sustain life.

 

Be sure to check out Poppy around the web:

Bunny Kitchen

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Bunny-Kitchen/1463605617194403?fref=ts

Twitter: @bunnykitchen

Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/poppyvelosa/

Instagram: poppyvelosa

Bloglovin’: https://www.bloglovin.com/blog/7134387

 

Information sources:

http://webarchive.nationalarchives.gov.uk/20140328084622/http://www.environment-agency.gov.uk/static/documents/Business/Otters_the_facts.pdf

http://jncc.defra.gov.uk/_speciespages/428.pdf

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/04/02/interest-in-vegan-diets-on-the-rise_n_3003221.html

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/10/01/world-vegetarian-day-2011_n_989218.html#s381719&title=Ellen_DeGeneres

http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2013/dec/10/beyonce-fur-vegan-restaurant-veganism-lifestyle-celebrity

http://ngm.nationalgeographic.com/2013/02/river-otters/nicolson-text

http://www.britishwildlifecentre.co.uk/planyourvisit/animals/otter.html

http://www.bournemouthecho.co.uk/news/8877625.Otter_death_sparks_poisoning_fears_at_River_Stour/

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21 thoughts on “Poppy from BunnyKitchen.com – Guest Hosting Today ♥

  1. The vegan 8

    What a beautifully written article Poppy! You are so knowledgeable and I’m so grateful you shared this. I 100% agree with you that one can’t truly be vegan without the ethical reason. One lady just asked me on Monday about going vegan and she says the transition was hard and was wondering I did it. I told her it first started as a need for health reasons, but once I discovered the horrors of factory farming , that sealed the deal and it wasn’t hard AT ALL. I told her I no longer see animals as food. In fact, it’s hard to believe I once did. Step by step I have changed changed things , shampoo, face products, clothing. Instead of leather in my new car purchase this past year, I went with faux. I’m trying to change everything so my money doesn’t contribute to animal suffering. Love this whole beautiful article!

    1. Poppy

      Thank you so much for your wonderful feedback and kind words and for sharing your own experience Brandi. I have often heard that people have started out as ‘plant based dieters’ to then become full on ‘vegans’. I’m really glad that getting to that place made your transition easier!

      Thanks again 😀

  2. Poppy

    Angela, I am so touched by your wonderful, kind words and for the opportunity to be able to share on your beautiful blog to your beautiful readers. Thank you xxx

    1. Angela @ Canned Time Post author

      Poppy, so glad you’re available to answer some of these comments. The weather here has messed with my work schedule and I’ll be driving 300 miles today with rain (and new tires though. Yeah!!!!) So I’m just going to have this 1 response to you for now. Thanks so much for your help and love in writing this. The Vegan gods are smiling down on you today ♡♡♡

  3. benevolentvegan

    Thanks for such a thoughtful and thought-provoking article, Poppy. My husband and I had been semi-vegetarian for most of our married life (20 years) , not eating any meat apart from chicken and fish. It wasn’t until this year that we began to assess these choices. Kevin read the book, “Eating Animals” and we watched the documentary, “Vegucated”. We decided then and there to become Vegan.
    Like you, my conviction around the abuse of animals has made my transition to veganism almost effortless. I thought I would miss dairy – especially cheese, but honestly, I’m accustomed now to the substitutes and I don’t miss it all all! Food is far more satisfying, knowing that we are not a party to the harm or abuse of any living thing. And we love our food!

    You are so good to dedicate yourself not only to this cause, but to those lesser creatures that don’t get as much attention. All animals are deserving of our best care.

    <3 Kat

    1. Poppy

      Kat, thank you for you wonderful comment. I did reply before but it appears not to have registered. I think it’s great that reading Eating Animals and watching Vegucated pushed you and your husband to this point where your transition is easier. I have never read that book or watched the documentary but have heard how powerful they both are.

      I think most people fear letting go of cheese, myself included, but it’s just like breaking a habit, after a few weeks, you forget what all the fuss was about.

      Many thanks for reading and taking the time to comment.

      Poppy xo

  4. An Unrefined Vegan

    Not surprisingly, this is a lovely, thoughtful post from sweet Poppy. I love that you’ve highlighted the Forgotten animals – those who suffer “indirectly” from our abuse of the environment that we all share. I’m tickled especially that you picked otters, because recently a single river otter moved into our small pond and we just love seeing it – so busy in the mornings diving to the bottom and coming back up with something tasty. I wish I could tell him/her: please stay here and don’t stray – you’re safe here! The pond is also home to two beavers (which are sought by “hunters”). Our own tiny animal sanctuary!

    1. Poppy

      You make me feel warm and fuzzy Annie! Your lovely words mean the world!
      I love your otter story and the beavers, what a dream…and although you may not speak Otter to tell them, I’ll bet they know they are safe there and that’s why they hang around at Annie’s pad with the beavers. So sweet! I love them all!

  5. evesfca

    Great post, Poppy. It’s true that people often associate vegans with simply not EATING animals, and forget that our environmental impact on animals goes way beyond farming them and eating them. Conversely, I’ve met environmentalists who aren’t vegan, who seem to ignore the fact that animal agriculture has the biggest impact on our environment. I’ve heard the sentiment that you can’t be an environmentalist if you aren’t vegan, and I think that’s true. People need to see the BIG picture, that all these things are linked. Everything is connected.

    1. Poppy

      Thank you so much for your great comment Eve! That is very thought provoking indeed and I have to agree with you. You may remember the excerpt from an environmentalist blog I shared on FB recently where the writer was pretty much anti vegan and claimed vegan was not a part of environmentalism (which is putting it politely!).
      It’s the same issue really as I discuss above, people making lifestyles (veganism, environmentalism etc) fit into their lives and not the other way.
      Thanks for reading and commenting Eve <3

  6. celestedimilla

    Such a wonderful writeup Poppy!! And I learned something from what you wrote here. I didn’t realize that wildlife was harmed from farming practices. I guess I’ll have to read up on that – I still have so much to learn. You are an inspiration Poppy, both to me and to the world. Celeste 🙂

    1. Poppy

      Celeste, what a lovely thing to say, I am really touched! Thank you.
      We can talk about wildlife and I’m sure lots more when I come over <3 🙂

  7. rika@vm

    Absolutely brilliant and moving article, Poppy, thank you for sharing your beautifully written words! I enjoy learning about your story and how you became a vegan. I appreciate your honesty and more animals are being saved because of you and your hard work! I am particularly fond of the wildlife especially the sea creatures, that were both harmed from farming/trading practices. Most importantly, thank you for making a difference to help these animals out!

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