The VRG's Maryland Newsletter by Mary H.
February 2013

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1) FEBRUARY 16TH VOLUNTEER DAY IN THE VRG OFFICE AND VOLUNTEER SPOTLIGHT
2) $5000 COLLEGE SCHOLARSHIP DEADLINE FEBRUARY 20TH
3) BONE CHAR-FREE SUGAR FROM FLORIDA CRYSTALS(r) AND DOMINO(r) SUGAR
4) 5 REASONS TO BUY 5 COPIES OF SIMPLY VEGAN 5TH ED. AT HALF PRICE - ONLY $40.00
5) SPICE UP VALENTINE'S DAY WITH VEGAN TREATS BY AMANDA GILLEY, 2012 VRG INTERN
6) VEGETARIAN SURVEY FROM UNIVERSITY OF GEORGIA
7) NEW VEG OPTION TESTED AT SELECTED SF BAY AREA CHIPOTLE MEXICAN GRILL RESTAURANTS
8) RECENT BALTIMORE SUN BLOG ARTICLE ON VEGAN DIETS
9) SPRING FESTIVALS TO ADD TO YOUR CALENDAR
10) UPCOMING LOCAL VEG HAPPENINGS
11) SIX WAYS TO SUPPORT THE VRG IN 2013

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1) FEBRUARY 16TH VOLUNTEER DAY IN THE VRG OFFICE

To work with like-minded folks on clerical tasks that help us prepare
for outreach events, communicate with our members, and connect with
veggie communities around the country come to Volunteer Days in The
VRG office in Roland Park, Baltimore. RSVP: maryh@vrg.org or call
(410) 366-8343

The next date is Saturday February 16th, time to be determined.
Tentative March date is March 16th, time to be determined. *Email
maryh@vrg.org with your morning or afternoon time preference.

Example tasks include assisting with mass mailings, helping with local
and national restaurant guide, preparing materials for events, and
assisting with research.

Interested in a task you can do from home? We are looking for
volunteers to review scholarship contest essays and write a brief
acknowledgment. To help, email Sonja at sonjah@vrg.org

VOLUNTEER SPOTLIGHT: LOCAL HIGH SCHOOL STUDENT:
Soren came to The VRG in middle school when he needed to fulfill a
specific number of volunteer hours for service learning. A vegetarian
since third grade, he has returned to volunteer with our organization,
now as a high school senior and was a valued help two days a week
during his fall 2012 semester and now again during his spring 2013
semester. His passion for vegetarianism and veganism goes hand in hand
with the jobs he has done for us including clerical tasks, research
projects, marketing, and Spanish translation. Thank you Soren and we
know you have a bright future ahead!

For more information about volunteering email Mary, VRG's Volunteer
Coordinator at maryh@vrg.org

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2) $5000 COLLEGE SCHOLARSHIP DEADLINE FEBRUARY 20TH

Thanks to the generosity of an anonymous donor, The VRG will award
$10,000 in scholarships to graduating vegetarian high school seniors,
bound for college in Fall 2013. Applicants will be judged on their
commitment to promoting a peaceful world through a vegetarian diet and
lifestyle. The two $5000 scholarships will be awarded later this year.

Deadline: Wednesday, February 20th, 2013.

For more information: [ http://www.vrg.org/student/scholar.htm ]

To volunteer to review scholarship essays and write an
acknowledgement to entrants, email: sonjah@vrg.org. This is
a task that can be done from home!

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3) BONE CHAR-FREE SUGAR FROM FLORIDA CRYSTALS(r) AND DOMINO(r) SUGAR 
BY JEANNE YACOUBOU, MS

The VRG received an inquiry from a food company in January 2013
about vegan sugar defined as sugar that had not been processed
through cow bone char. As we reported in a 2007 update,
[ http://www.vrg.org/journal/vj2007issue4/2007_issue4_sugar.php ]
most United States cane sugar continues to be decolorized through
cow bone char.

We spoke with two employees at C&H(r) Sugar in January 2013 who
told us that most of their sugar not certified USDA Organic is
processed through "natural charcoal" (i.e., cow bone char). Their
Washed Raw Sugar has not been decolorized using bone char but it
is only produced at its Hawaii plant and not available for widespread
distribution especially in large quantities. However, the company is
looking into purchasing cane sugar from other nations in order to
expand production of the Washed Raw Sugar.

C&H(r) directed us to its sister companies: Florida Crystals(r) and
Domino(r) Sugar. Florida Crystals sugar, both conventional and
USDA Organic varieties, has not been processed through cow bone
char. It is widely available in both large and small quantities.

Comparatively speaking, Florida Crystals(r) is more expensive than
other sugar brands. For example, in January 2013 The VRG noticed
several online stores selling their own store brand conventional
sugar for approximately $3/4 lbs. while Florida Crystals(r) sugar
sells for approximately $6/4 lbs.
[ http://shop.floridacrystals.com/Natural-Sugar ]

Similarly, large quantities of sugar differ significantly in price.
Conventional cane sugar at several online stores sells for
approximately $23/50 lbs. while Florida Crystals(r) cane sugar sells
for approximately $36/25 lbs. Florida Crystals(r) Demerara Sugar
costs approximately $58/50 lbs.

The VRG spoke with Shannon, a customer service representative at
Domino(r) Sugar. She explained that although most Domino(r) Sugar
has been processed through cow bone char, it is possible to tell from
the sugar bag label whether it came from one of two of its nine
North American plants in which processing does not involve cow
bone char. One of the plants is located in Yonkers, NY and the
other is in Orlando, FL.

The first number/letter on the package code reveals the plant in which
the sugar was processed. The number "1" identifies the Yonkers plant
as the processing location. The letter "X" means that the sugar was
processed at the Orlando plant.

The second number refers to the year in which the sugar was
packaged ("2" for 2012). The third refers to the week in that year
when the sugar was processed ("8" means the eighth week). The
following number refers to the day of the week on which the sugar
was processed ("2" refers to Tuesday). The following "A, B, or C"
indicates the shift (morning, afternoon, or night) when the sugar
underwent processing. The last number identifies the machine on
which the sugar was processed.

Shannon could not specify whether sugar is only sold close to its
plant of origin or whether it may travel long distances before being
sold. Therefore, we cannot say that only stores close to Yonkers or
Orlando carry Domino(r) Sugar that has not been processed through cow
bone char.

In December 2012, The VRG reported that Australia has not used
cow bone char to decolorize its sugar since 1990. Instead, Australians
use non-animal activated carbon filters. The major Australian sugar
company told us that they do not distribute to North or South America.
[ http://www.vrg.org/blog/2012/12/19/non-animal-coal-filters-used-to-process-cane-sugar-in-australia/ ]

To purchase our Guide to Food Ingredients, please visit our website:
[ http://www.vrg.org/catalog/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=1&products_id=8 ]

To support Vegetarian Resource Group Research, donate at:
[ https://www.givedirect.org/give/givefrm.asp?CID=1565 ]

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4) 5 REASONS TO BUY 5 COPIES OF SIMPLY VEGAN 5th ED. AT HALF PRICE - ONLY $40.00

#5 This book offers recipes and nutritional information that can help
your loved ones live a healthful, balanced vegan life and make for a
great gift on Valentines Day or any occasion.

#4 Your purchase of Simply Vegan supports VRG outreach and promotes
vegetarian diets in a positive way.

#3 With a completely updated nutrition section, you could refer these
books to clients or give them away at group meetings.

#2 The cookbook includes the new four color My Vegan Plate handout
(VRG's version of the USDA My Plate).

#1 One copy of Simply Vegan, 5th Edition costs $15.95 (plus $6.00 s/h
if total order is less than $25). More than $40.00 savings when you
buy five copies!

Order your copies today:
[ http://www.vrg.org/catalog/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=1&products_id=93 ]

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5) SPICE UP VALENTINES DAY WITH VEGAN TREATS BY AMANDA GILLEY, 2012 VRG INTERN

When I think of Valentine's Day I think of something unusual and
exotic. I think spice and chocolate, or I look for show stopping
recipes to make for that special someone.

Usually to celebrate this holiday, couples flock to a nice restaurant
where they pay top dollar for a decent meal. Rarely do I find couples
truly excited about their night out together. Normally I hear that
what should have been an intimate evening was really a loud,
overpriced, and not a genuine outing. For those of you that agree,
then here are some fresh new ideas to celebrate.

Entree recipes that really made my belly grumble in excitement.
"Spicy Mandarin Chickpeas," a recipe from Conveniently Vegan, sounded
exotic and delicious. This recipe definitely fits the bill of unusual
and the best part is that it is easy to make! Another great option for
those short on time and guests is the "Sweet Indian Rice with Carrots
and Dates" from Vegan Meals for One or Two. This recipe serves 2 and
is ready in less than 30 minutes.

Dessert must make an impression on Valentine's Day! From the same back
issue in which I found a mac and no-cheese recipe, the "Crispy Rice
Square" recipe called my attention. I know crispy rice squares don't
sound like a treat fit for such a special occasion but it is all in
the presentation. For example you can flavor the rice squares with
melted chocolate and then press them into foil heart molds which can
be found in the baking section of many grocery stores around the month
of February. This technique can dress up any basic and easy recipe,
even cupcake and brownie recipes!

I can't think of any other dessert that better represents Valentine's
Day than chocolate cake. In the book Vegans Know How to Party a "Moist
Chocolate Cake" recipe sounded like the perfect option for dessert. To
keep the decadence flowing finish off this chocolate cake with a
"Vegan Caramel Sauce" also from Vegans Know How to Party. So whether
you have plenty of time or are short on time and whether you are
cooking for two or six, spice up this Valentine's Day with some
special vegan treats!

You can read the full article and find the cited recipes on our blog
at:
[ http://www.vrg.org/blog/2012/02/06/spice-up-this-valentines-day-with-some-special-vegan-treats/ ]

For more recipes and cookbooks, browse our online bookstore and
archived copies of Vegetarian Journal: [ http://www.vrg.org/catalog/ ]

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6) VEGETARIAN SURVEY FROM UNIVERSITY OF GEORGIA

A graduate student from University of Georgia has asked that The VRG
participate in a national survey on vegetarianism and for us to share
it with our members. The purpose of the survey is to examine and
document the infant feeding intentions and practices of vegetarian
women in the United States. Please take a few minutes to take the
survey and help this student collect data and feel free to share with
family and friends as well.

[ https://ugeorgia.qualtrics.com/WRQualtricsSurveyEngine/?Q_SS=4N1HkX7QVENIT1b_e2JKbUBstdJlhoF&_=1 ]

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7) NEW VEG OPTION TESTED AT SELECTED SF BAY AREA CHIPOTLE MEXICAN GRILL RESTAURANTS

Chipotle Mexican Grill has announced that they plan to test a
vegetarian menu item at selected locations in the San Francisco Bay
Area in February. From the press release:

"Sofritas, shredded tofu braised with chipotle chilis, roasted
poblanos and a blend of aromatic spices, is made with organic, non-GMO
tofu from Oakland's Hodo Soy. Chipotle expects Sofritas to appeal to
vegetarian and vegan customers...."

For more information, see:
[ http://ir.chipotle.com/phoenix.zhtml?c=194775&p=irol-newsArticle&ID=1778960&highlight= ]

To encourage your local Chipotle Mexican Grill Restaurant to include
more vegetarian options including the "sofritas" you can contact them
here:
[ http://www.chipotle.com/en-US/talk_to_us/general_comments/general_comments.aspx ]

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8) RECENT BALTIMORE SUN BLOG ARTICLE ON VEGAN DIETS

For your interest - I was searching local vegan info for the February
Maryland Email newsletter and saw this blog post that offers fact
based, practical advice for anyone considering switching to a vegan
diet. Happy to see local media publicizing the benefits of a vegan or
vegetarian diet! The article references an RD at MedStar Good
Samaritan Hospital.

[ http://articles.baltimoresun.com/2013-01-23/health/bs-hs-expert-vegan-20130123_1_vegan-diet-amino-acids-folic-acid/2 ]

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9) SPRING FESTIVALS TO ADD TO YOUR CALENDAR

Stop by The VRG's outreach booth at the following events or if you
want to sign up to volunteer, email: maryh@vrg.org

April 11, Thursday from 11:00 - 2:00
Loyola University Health Fair, on Loyola campus

April 20, Saturday from 11:00 - 5:00
First Annual Kale-a-Rama Vegan Festival, in Greenbelt, Maryland
[ https://www.facebook.com/kalearama?ref=stream ]

April 27, Saturday from 11:00 - 4:00
3rd Annual Baltimore VegFest, at UMBC in Arbutus, MD
[ http://www.thehumaneleague.com/BaltimoreVegFest/index.htm ]

May 19, Sunday from 7:00 - 12:00
Baltimore Farmers Market & Bazaar, under I-83 in Downtown Baltimore
[ http://www.facebook.com/BmoreFarmersMarket ]

June 1-2, Saturday - Sunday from 11:00 - 6:00
Charles Village Fest in Charles Village neighborhood, Baltimore
[ www.charlesvillagefestival.com/ ]

June 27-30, Thursday - Sunday
Animal Rights Conference in Washington, D.C.
[ http://www.arconference.org/ ]
*VRG tabling dates to be determined

September 27-29
India International Vegan Festival
Sthitaprajna Vegan Centre, Karnataka, India.
[ www.indianvegansociety.com/vegan-festival.html ]
*Note: The VRG is not scheduled to table at this festival but
please let us know if you are attending and would like to
take materials for us.

To support The VRG outreach efforts, donate:
[ https://www.givedirect.org/give/givefrm.asp?CID=1565 ]

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10) UPCOMING LOCAL VEG HAPPENINGS

A rotating vegan potluck in the greater Baltimore area is happy to
open their doors to families who are interested in a brunch or late
afternoon gathering to allow kids, parents, and peers to share info,
ideas, and support. To be added to the monthly potluck announcement
email Dana Shaw: danavshaw@yahoo.com

Bethesda Maryland hosts The Sophisticated Vegan Meetup, a friendly get
together over veg meals in a non-judgemental environment. Upcoming
events include: 'Cooking Veg-centric Cuisine with Red Wine' on Feb
2nd, 'Vegan Valentines' on February 14th, Delectable Dinner (and
Jazz!!)' on Feb 22nd, 'Vegan Brunch Cooking Class' on March 9th, 'Paws
in the Park' on April 28th. Specific information regarding events is
for members only. Sign up at:
[ http://www.meetup.com/TheSophisticatedVegan/ ]

Hagerstown, Maryland has the Western Maryland Veg Life Meetup, a forum
to meet fellow health-seekers, environmentalists, vegans, vegetarians,
raw food enthusiasts, backyard organic gardeners, etc. and to learn
more about alternative health lifestyles. For more info:
[ http://www.westmdveg.org/ ]

February 3, Sunday 12:30 P.M. Baltimore Veg Meetup Discussion at Cafe
Zen, Belvedere Square in Baltimore hosted by EarthSave. This casual
gathering and lifestyle discussion over great food takes place on the
first Sunday of every month. Address: 438 E Belvedere Ave, Baltimore,
MD 21212. RSVP: [ http://vegetarian.meetup.com/9/ ] Contact organizer
Don Robertson at Baltimore@Earthsave.org or (410) 252-3043.

February 5, Tuesday 6:00 - 9:00 P.M. Small Business Meet-up at The
Land of Kush. If you are a small business owner, bring your business
cards and build new or rebuild old relationships. Don't own a
business? Come introduce a friend to this 100% vegan- soul food
establishment. RSVP: call (443) 844-5046 or
[ http://www.facebook.com/events/144035782418610/ ] Location: 840 N.
Eutaw St, Baltimore, MD 21201.

February 9, Saturday 3:00 - 5:00 P.M. Raw Vegan Foods Demo by Nakia
Powell of Nakia's Peace of Life Catering, hosted by Open The Cages
Alliance at Gallery 788, 218 W. Saratoga Street, Baltimore, MD 21201.
Email: info@openthecages.org or call (443) 478-3074.

February 10, Sunday 1:00 P.M. Veggie Gourmet Cooking Class with Mimi
Clark. "Comfort Foods", put a healthy slant on foods that satisfy and
de-stress(r)including some of the following: Shepherd's Pie, Goulash,
Yam Fries, Corn Dogs, Mac & Cheese, Chicken-free Noodle Soup and more.
$55/person; $100/two people; $50/VSDC, VRG, COK members. Gift
certificates available. Make checks payable to Mimi Clark, 9302
Hallston Ct., Fairfax Station, VA 22039. Sorry, no phone or email
reservations. Email: veggourmet@aol.com or call 703.643.2713 for space
availability. Coming in March: Sushi & International Cuisine
[ http://veggourmet.wordpress.com/ ]

February 27, Sunday 3:00 P.M. Meat-Free in Frederick! hosts 'Get a
Week's Worth of Food!' Vegan Meal Swap. What you do: make one large
dish and divide it into seven containers. Will be heald at the C Burr
Artz Library, 110 East Patrick Street in Frederick, MD. More info:
[ http://www.meetup.com/Meat-Free-in-Frederick/ ]

February 20, Wednesday 7:00 - 9:00 P.M. Baltimore Vegan Meetup
Discussion Group in Pikesville at Mr. Chan's Szechuan Restaurant
hosted by EarthSave. A supportive group that can help with questions
and challenges over great tasting vegan food options. Address: 1000
Reisterstown Rd in Pikesville. Contact: Don Robertson at
Baltimore@Earthsave.org or (410) 252-3043. RSVP:
[ http://vegan.meetup.com/29/ ]

February 21, Friday 9:00 A.M. - 3:00 P.M. Humane Lobby Day in
Annapolis, Maryland. The Humane Society of the United States, The
ASPCA, and Maryland Votes for Animals invite members, supporters, and
animal advocates to participate and help make a difference for
animals. Contact: Tami Santelli, tsantelli@humanesociety.org Meet at 6
Bladen Street, Annapolis, MD 21401.
[ http://action.humanesociety.org/site/Calendar?id=108101&view=Detail&autologin=true ]

February 24, Sunday 6:00 P.M. - 9:00 P.M. EarthSave Baltimore's Veg
Dinner Series - and screening of "Peaceable Kingdom" at Your
Prescription for Health in Owings Mills. Dinner guests are asked to
bring a vegan dish to serve 8 and a donation of $5. RSVP:
baltimore@earthsave.org or [ http://earthsavebaltimore.org/__node/76 ]

March 2, Saturday 10:00 A.M. - 2:00 P.M., Meat-down ~ a Vegan &
Vegetarian Meet-up. It does not matter if you are vegan, vegetarian,
or veg curious, you are welcome and encouraged to bring a friend to
this low key, pressure-free social gathering. Bring an open mind and
any ideas you have to share. RSVP to Natalie, nrevans1117@yahoo.com or
(301) 481-2741. Location: LaPlata Library 2 Garrett Avenue, La Plata,
MD 20646.

March 2, Saturday 3:00 - 5:00 P.M. Cooking with Tofu and Seitan, demo
hosted by Open The Cages Alliances directors at Gallery 778, 218 W.
Saratoga Street, Baltimore, MD 21201. $5 suggested donation. RSVP:
info@openthecages.org or call (443) 478-3074.

March 16 - April 13: 2013 Vegan Living Program hosted by Open the
Cages Alliance. This education program is open for registration if you
are interested in living vegan for 5 weeks with the support of Vegan
Coaches and information sessions. Schedule and more information on
OTCA website: [ http://www.openthecages.org/events/index.html ]

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11) SIX WAYS TO SUPPORT THE VRG IN 2013

In 2012 The Vegetarian Resource Group had many successes as we worked
to make it easier to live healthy vegan and vegetarian lives. We
participated in over 30 outreach booths around the country, worked
with 8 college interns in Baltimore (plus more long distance), hosted
a vegan nutrition presentation day for 12 dietetic students from the
University of Maryland, welcomed 100 community members to our 31st
Annual Pre-Thanksgiving Vegan Potluck, and connected with more people
than we can count by distributing materials at outreach events,
through general inquiries to our office via phone calls and emails,
and circulating our quarterly, Vegetarian Journal magazine.

With your contribution, our programs and outreach can extend even
further in 2013. Here a few ways you can support us:

1) Become a member and receive the Vegetarian Journal
[ http://www.vrg.org/journal/ ]

2) Buy our cookbooks about vegan nutrition & cooking
[ http://www.vrg.org/catalog/ ]

3) Sign up for VRG's Visa (r) Platinum Rewards Card and automatically
give with every purchase you make.
[ http://www.cardpartner.com/affinity/app/vrg ]

4) Remember us when choosing for the Combined Federal Campaign or
other Matching Charity Campaign at your workplace

5) Donate in creative ways(r)we know everyone's situation is unique.
Donate your time, donate your vehicle, or even donate stock!
[ www.vrg.org/getinvolved.php ]
[ www.vrg.org/blog/2012/09/14/how-to-donate-your-vehicle-to-vrg/ ]

6) Consider naming The VRG as a beneficiary in your will, life
insurance policy, or IRA.
[ http://www.vrg.org/donation/bequests.htm]

Thank you!

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ABOUT THE VEGETARIAN RESOURCE GROUP

Our health professionals, activists, and educators work with
businesses and individuals to bring about healthful changes in your
school, workplace, and community. Registered dietitians and physicians
aid in the development of nutrition-related publications and answer
member and media questions about vegetarian diets. The Vegetarian
Resource Group is a non-profit organization. Financial support comes
primarily from memberships, donations, bequests and book sales. The
VEGETARIAN JOURNAL, a print magazine, is a benefit of membership in
The VRG. (For more information, please see the VEGETARIAN JOURNAL
online at [ http://www.vrg.org/journal/ ] )

To sign up for The Vegetarian Resource Group national email newsletter,
please visit: [ http://www.vrg.org/vrgnews/ ]

To sign up for The VRG's Maryland Email Newsletter, please visit:
[ http://www.vrg.org/local/ ]

We are also on Facebook and Twitter!!
[ http://www.facebook.com/thevegetarianresourcegroup ]
[ http://www.twitter.com/VegResourceGrp ]

To sign up for Parents ListServe Network, visit:
[ groups.yahoo.com/group/vrgparents/ ]

If you would like to make a donation, become a member, volunteer, or
find out more about The VRG, contact us at:

The Vegetarian Resource Group
P.O. Box 1463
Baltimore, MD 21203
Phone: (410) 366-8343
Fax: (410) 366-8804
E-mail: vrg@vrg.org, Website: [ http://www.vrg.org ]
To donate:
[ https://www.givedirect.org/give/givefrm.asp?Action=GC&CID=1565 ]

Copyright The Vegetarian Resource Group 2013
The contents of this newsletter, and our other publications, including
Vegetarian Journal, are not intended to provide personal medical advice.
Medical advice should be obtained from a qualified health professional.
We often depend on product and ingredient information from company
statements. It is impossible to be 100% sure about a statement, info
can change, people have different views, and mistakes can be made.
Please use your own best judgment about whether a product is suitable
for you. To be sure, do further research or confirmation on your own.

If you were forwarded this message and would like to sign up for our
monthly local email newsletter please see our website:
[ http://www.vrg.org/local/ ]

If you wish to not receive the Local Email Newsletter, send an e-mail
message to vrg@vrg.org with the phrase "remove me from local email
newsletter".