New Advertising Campaign Encourages Consumers to Eat More Veggies, Skip the "Chikin"

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It was 1995 when the words “Eat Mor Chikin” first appeared on an Atlanta, Ga., billboard. Painted by a pair of rebel cows, it was the beginning of a movement that became an iconic advertising campaign. Nearly 26 years later, Pasado’s Safe Haven is challenging consumers to adapt a new slogan that better reflects current times: Eat More Veggies.

“There is no denying the immense negative impact that animal consumption has on our planet, our health and of course the animals themselves."

It was 1995 when the words “Eat Mor Chikin” first appeared on an Atlanta, Ga., billboard. Painted by a pair of rebel cows, it was the beginning of a movement that became an iconic advertising campaign.

Nearly 26 years later, Pasado’s Safe Haven is challenging consumers to adapt a new slogan that better reflects current times: Eat More Veggies. Launching this week through a static and mobile billboard campaign in the Seattle Metro area, the Eat More Veggies challenge is designed to inspire more people to consider replacing at least one meal a day with plant-based options.

“The terms ‘global warming’ and ‘climate change’ were barely part of the vernacular in 1995 – and very few health care providers were recommending a diet free of animal products,” says Laura Henderson, executive director of Pasado’s Safe Haven, a Seattle-area organization that’s inspiring people to rethink their relationship with animals. “But that’s not the case today. There is no denying the immense negative impact that animal consumption has on our planet, our health and of course the animals themselves. It’s time for each of us to reimagine how we can help create a cleaner, healthier and more compassionate world.”

Farm animal production is the single largest anthropogenic use of land, contributing to soil degradation, dwindling water supplies, and air pollution. According to the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations (UN), the animal agriculture sector is responsible for approximately 18%, or nearly one-fifth, of human-induced greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.

Additionally, there is excellent scientific evidence that many chronic diseases can be prevented, controlled, or even reversed with a whole-food, plant-based diet. Scientific research highlighted in the landmark book “The China Study” shows that a plant-based diet can reduce the risk of type-2 diabetes, heart disease, certain types of cancer, and other major illnesses.

Lastly, there is growing evidence that treating animals with more compassion and eliminating them from the human diet can dramatically reduce the transmission of communicable diseases – including diseases that can lead to global pandemics.

“The juncture between animals and healthcare is an extremely important issue,” according to Aysha Akhtar, MD, MPH, who is a neurologist and public health specialist, a Fellow of the Oxford Centre for Animal Ethics, and works for the Office of Counterterrorism and Emerging Threats of the Food and Drug Administration. “There is real evidence to show just how many of our greatest public health threats are connected with animal treatment. This includes violence, infectious disease epidemics and pandemics, the human health impact from climate change and environmental disruptions, and obesity and chronic diseases.”

The bottom line, Henderson says, is that systemic change in terms of what humans eat has never been more important. But everyone knows that change is hard.

“This campaign recognizes and appreciates that completely purging animals from your diet can feel daunting,” she says, “but with so many grocery and restaurant chains now offering plant-based options, it’s easier than ever to give it a try.

“Replacing just one meal a day over the course of a year with a plant-based option saves approximately 105 animal lives, almost 200,000 gallons of water and the pollution equivalent to about 3,000 miles driven in your car. If everyone in the United States reduced their meat and dairy intake by just 50 percent per year, it would be equal to taking 26 million cars off the road.”

Pasado’s Safe Haven, the Pacific Northwest's leading animal sanctuary and rescue organization, is on a mission to inspire humans to reimagine their relationship with animals. Our impact scales from helping individual animals recover from abuse to improving the way larger societal systems treat animals through investigations, education, training and advocacy. Follow us on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram for daily updates on rescues as well as animals in our care or visit our website at http://www.pasadosafehaven.org.

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Stacey DiNuzzo
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