Want vegetarian school lunches? Go to Taiwan!  »

Check it out! These kids are eating lunches provided by Chungshan Elementary School in Taipei County, Taiwan. The school made and served those big, vegetable-icious lunches! Can you even take it?

The China Post reports on the results of the Taiwan Ministry of Education’s recent survey: almost 86 percent of public schools are offering vegetarian lunches at least once a month, with some schools serving vegetarian lunches as frequently as twice a week. Lucky kids!

Why did Taipei start this vegetarian lunch program—officially, and “initiative…to promote the consumption of five different vegetables and fruit in the daily diet of their student body”? Oh, to help combat global warming, and because eating too much meat is unhealthy, and because vegetables are more nutritious than animal products! Does anyone else get the impression that the meat and dairy industry doesn’t own the Taiwanese government like they own the U.S. government?

The kids are eating things like dried bean curd, seaweed, and black sesame seeds, which makes your Vegansaurus wish really hard to be a schoolchild in Taipei. Field trip, anyone?

[photo via CNA]


70 percent of Hamburgers are possibly unsafe, definitely disgusting  »

There’s a saying that you should always release bad news on Friday, when no one is paying attention. And when you have REALLY bad news, save it until the end of the year. And when your news is that 70 percent of the nation’s hamburgers, served by McDonald’s and the National School Lunch Program (NSLP), are unsafe and possibly filled with E. coli, even after getting pumped full of ammonia? Then you save that sheeze till the last day of the decade.

A New York Times report, politely titled "Safety of Beef Processing Method Is Questioned" (translation from journo-speak: WTF BEEF IS SO FUCKED), reveals that the ammonia process used by Beef Products, Inc. is not only letting E. coli slip through, but that the U.S. Department of Agriculture believes that the process is safe enough to exempt Beef Products, Inc. from inspections. So it’s not only unsafe but the government is taking their word for it because they triple pinky swear promise that it’s OK and corporations never lie, especially not in their own self-published reports.

The idea behind the process is to scoop up fatty slaughterhouse floor leftovers (you know, the kind they usually throw away or dump in dog food), separate the protein from the fat in a centrifuge, squeeze it through tubes, spray it with ammonia, then flash-freeze and compress the final goop. If everything worked, the company believes that the end product will be fully sanitized and free of contaminants like E. coli and salmonella. Normally, slaughterhouse scraps are especially prone to contaminants, but the resulting filler meat is so cheap and “safe” that it’s good enough for McDonald’s and the NSLP.

Forget for a minute if the process works or not. Even if it was 100 percent perfect, YOU’RE EATING MEAT SOAKED IN AMMONIA. Seriously, who cares if it works or not. Nothing I eat needs to be soaked in ammonia to kill it even more after it’s already dead.

And after watching the clip above of the Beef Products, Inc. factory tour, I’m no longer worried about whether or not the American public will accept lab-grown meat as hamburger filler. They will. Squeeze it through tubes into flash-frozen pink slabs and no one will bat an eyelash.

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