VRG-NEWS: The Vegetarian Resource Group Newsletter
Volume 15, Issue 5
May 2011

CONTENTS

  1. THANKS TO SCHOLARSHIP CONTEST VOLUNTEERS
  2. VRG'S VEGAN INDIAN DINNER IN SAN DIEGO, SEPT 25
  3. KEBOBS WITH PINEAPPLE AND RED PEPPER - FOR MEMORIAL DAY
  4. VRG'S FOOD INGREDIENT GUIDE NOW AVAILABLE ON AMAZON KINDLE
  5. NATIONAL FOOD DAY
  6. VEGAN CAMPS AT STHITAPRAJNA VEGAN RETREAT, KARNATAKA, INDIA
  7. THREE BOOK REVIEWS
  8. INTERVIEW REQUEST FROM FREELANCER FOR PEOPLE WITH VEGAN PETS
  9. ECOFAIR 2011 - REISTERSTOWN, MD
  10. SUBWAY(TM
  11. RESEARCH PARTICIPATION REQUEST FROM GRAD STUDENT
  12. LETTER FROM READER ABOUT NAAN
  13. ATHLETES AND A VEGETARIAN DIET
  14. LABELING OF HOUSEHOLD CLEANING PRODUCTS
  15. PIZZA HUT AUSTRALIA
  16. About The Vegetarian Resource Group
  17. About VRG-NEWS

1) THANKS TO SCHOLARSHIP CONTEST VOLUNTEERS

Thank you to these volunteers for helping The Vegetarian Resource Group with our college scholarship contest:

  • Ryan Andrews
  • Julia Hart
  • Lisa Martin
  • Shannon Merck
  • Susan Petrie
  • Jenny Saccenti
  • Linda Tyler
  • Amy Vaughn
  • Kristi Watson

For information about VRG's scholarship contest, see [ http://www.vrg.org/student/scholar.htm ]

If you would like to volunteer to respond to scholarship entrants next January through March, please e-mail Sonja at vrg@vrg.org

If you would like to make a donation towards our scholarship contest, please go to: [ https://www.givedirect.org/give/givefrm.asp?CID=1565 ]

Please indicate if the donation is towards a college scholarship, a needs based internship, or assisting with publicity, reporting, and administering the contest.

Thanks!


2) VRG'S VEGAN INDIAN DINNER IN SAN DIEGO, SEPT 25

VEGAN INDIAN DINNER
Sunday, September 25, 2011, 6:30 p.m.
San Diego, CA
Royal India, 329 Market Street

Sponsored by The Vegetarian Resource Group during the American Dietetic Association Food and Nutrition Conference and Expo. Meet Reed Mangels, PhD, RD, Catherine Conway, MS, RD, and other vegetarian dietitians.

BUFFET MENU:

  • Salad
  • Samosas
  • Veggie Pakora
  • Aloo Gobi
  • Bengan Bhartha
  • Green Beans Masala
  • Veggie Mango Pineapple
  • Channa Masala
  • Peas Pulao Rice
  • Rice
  • Salad

RESERVATIONS AND PAYMENT MUST BE MADE IN ADVANCE. Refunds will only be made if we can replace your seat.

Name:
Address:
City:
State:
Telephone:
E-mail:
Attendees:
___ Number of adults X $25 before August 20, 2011=  $_____
___ Number of adults X $35 after August 20, 2011=   $_____
___ Children X $20 before August 20, 2011=          $_____
___ Donation for outreach to dietitians             $_____

Please send payment to The Vegetarian Resource Group, P.O. Box 1463, Baltimore, MD 21203; Call (410) 366-8343 9-5 AM Eastern Time, Monday to Friday, or pay at online here [ https://www.givedirect.org/give/givefrm.asp?CID=1565 ]. Please write San Diego dinner in the notes field and the name of attendees. (The early registration price is limited to the first fifty registrants.)


3) KEBOBS WITH PINEAPPLE AND RED PEPPER - FOR MEMORIAL DAY

Excerpted from: Vegans Know How to Party
http://www.vrg.org/catalog/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=1&products_id=63 ]

OVER 465 VEGAN RECIPES, INCLUDING DESSERTS, APPETIZERS, AND MAIN DISHES
By Chef Nancy Berkoff, RD

Kebobs with Pineapple and Red Pepper
Serves 10

  • 1/2 cup lite soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine or 1/4 cup white vinegar combined with 1/4 cup cold water
  • 1/2 cup minced onions
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 pound 1-inch chunks extra-firm tofu, seitan, or tempeh (about 3 cups)
  • 2 cups 1-inch pieces red bell pepper
  • 2 cups 1-inch chunks fresh pineapple

Combine soy sauce, oil, wine or vinegar and water, onions, and garlic in a large plastic or glass bowl. Add tofu, seitan, or tempeh and marinate in the refrigerator for 1 hour. Remove tofu, seitan, or tempeh from marinade. Save marinade. Preheat grill or broiler. On skewers, alternate tofu, seitan, or tempeh with red pepper and pineapple. Place kebobs in a shallow pan. Drizzle with marinade. If using a grill, place directly on grill. Grill or broil for 3-4 minutes, just until pepper begins to brown. Serve alone, on a bed of couscous or cooked bulgur wheat, or with a fresh spinach salad.

Total Calories Per Serving 135
Total Fat as % of Daily Value 13%
Protein 6 gm
Fat 8 gm
Carbohydrates 10 gm
Calcium 93 mg
Iron 1 mg
Sodium 518 mg
Dietary Fiber 1 gm

4) VRG'S FOOD INGREDIENT GUIDE NOW AVAILABLE ON AMAZON KINDLE

Vegetarian Journal's Guide to Food Ingredients is now available on Amazon Kindle! Price: $6.92, includes VAT & free international wireless delivery via Amazon Whispernet Click here to order the Kindle Edition:
http://www.amazon.com/Vegetarian-Journals-Guide-Ingredients-ebook/dp/B004TNIK06/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&m=AG56TWVU5XWC2&s=digital-text&qid=1305909681&sr=1-1 ]

Also available on Amazon.co.uk for £4.26
https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B004TNIK06 ]

The Guide to Food Ingredients is indispensable in deciphering ingredient labels. It lists the uses, sources, and definitions of over 200 common food ingredients. This easy-to-read list of ingredients commonly found in many foods and beverages indicates whether they are vegetarian, vegan, typically vegetarian, typically vegan, may be non-vegetarian, or non-vegetarian. The emphasis is on commercial sources of ingredients must commonly used today. Each entry lists commercial sources, alternative names (if any), foods or beverages containing the ingredient, and in some cases manufacturer's information about current supply sourcing.

Print copies of Vegetarian Journal's Guide to Food Ingredients are available for $6 from our online catalog [ http://www.vrg.org/catalog/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=1&products_id=8 ], and can also be ordered by calling us at 410-366-8343, M-F, 9-5.


5) NATIONAL FOOD DAY

This was sent to us from the Organizers of National Food Day.

Dear Friend,

I'm excited to tell you about a major new campaign that we are launching later today with some of the most prominent voices for change in the food policy world. That venture is Food Day [ http://www.foodday.org/ ]!

We're launching what we hope will become an annual event that is both a celebration of real, healthy food--and a powerful, grassroots movement for change.

We've modeled Food Day on Earth Day. It is led by honorary co-chairs Tom Harkin (D-IA) and Rep. Rosa Delauro (D-CT), and is backed by an impressive advisory board [ http://foodday.org/about-food-day/food-day-advisory-board.php ] including author Michael Pollan, physicians David Satcher and Michael Roizen, professors Walter Willett, Kelly Brownell, and Marion Nestle, and prominent chefs such as Alice Waters, Dan Barber, and Nora Pouillon. Food Day also has the support of a wide range of national and local organizations [ http://foodday.org/about-food-day/partner-organizations.php ] focused on hunger, sustainable agriculture, animal welfare, and public health.

But the most important ingredient in Food Day is you! We envision thousands of events on October 24, 2011, from coast to coast, ranging from small events in homes and classrooms, to large rallies in public parks, and hearings in city councils and state legislatures. A Food Day event could be as simple as a vegetable-recognition contest in a kindergarten, a potluck dinner with friends featuring locally sourced ingredients, a spirited debate on a college campus, or celebrating the harvest from an urban garden you start this spring.

Food Day is all about solving local communities' food problems. Nationally, we've identified five key priorities:

  • Reducing diet-related disease by promoting healthy foods
  • Supporting sustainable farms and cutting subsidies to agribusiness
  • Expanding access to food and alleviating hunger
  • Reforming factory farms to protect animals and the environment
  • Curbing junk-food marketing to kids

Can we count on you to participate in a Food Day event near you, or better yet, will you organize a Food Day event in your community? If none of the topics above appeals to you, is there another food issue confronting your community that needs attention? A growing network of partner organizations, advisors, and Food Day organizing staff [ http://foodday.org/about-food-day/food-day-staff.php ] is standing by to help you put a Food Day event on the calendar. (In weeks we'll have a web-based map that lets you schedule or RSVP to Food Day events with just a few clicks of a mouse!)

Please email me at foodday@cspinet.org, or call us at (202) 777-8392. Food Day is just a five months out. That's more than enough time to plan, but let's get started together, today!

Sincerely,

Michael F. Jacobson
Executive Director, CSPI and Founder, Food Day

P.S. You can keep up with Food Day and other exciting things by 'liking' Food Day on Facebook [ http://www.facebook.com/fooddayeatreal ], or following us at our new Twitter handle [ http://www.twitter.com/cspi ]. And please share this message with your friends and family.


6) VEGAN CAMPS AT STHITAPRAJNA VEGAN RETREAT, KARNATAKA, INDIA

The following vegan camps are being offered at Sthitaprajna Vegan Retreat, Karnataka, India:

Vegans' Year-End Camp:
From Saturday, Dec 24, 2011 to Monday, Jan 2, 2012 (9 nights, 10 days)
Vegans' New Year Camp:
From Saturday, Jan 14, 2012 to Monday, Jan 23, 2012 (9 nights, 10 days)
'Vegans in Rains' Camp:
From Saturday, Aug.4, 2012 to Monday, Aug.13, 2012 (9 nights, 10 days)

Main Features: Yoga & Pranayama Classes, Discourses on Yogic/Vegan Living, Meditation, Music & Dance Programs/classes, Excursions, Trekking, Beach Visits, Village Visits, Bird watching, Healthy Plant Foods, Relaxing and Rejuvenating Atmosphere, and many more.

For more information, visit: [ http://www.indianvegansociety.com/vegan_centre ]


7) THREE BOOK REVIEWS

These reviews originally appeared in Vegetarian Journal Issue 3, 2010 [ http://www.vrg.org/journal/vj2010issue3/index.php ]. To subscribe to Vegetarian Journal, visit: [ http://www.vrg.org/journal/ ]

The Cancer Survivor's Guide: Foods That Help You Fight Back!
http://astore.amazon.com/httpwwwvrgorg-20/detail/1570672253 ]
By Neal D. Barnard, MD, and Jennifer K. Reilly, RD

The Cancer Survivor's Guide is a part of The Cancer Project's nutrition education program. It was written for people who have been diagnosed with cancer, but it can give everyone insights into food's role in health.

The first chapters cover food's role in cancer prevention and survival. Barnard and Reilly promote a low-fat, high-fiber, vegan diet that includes a generous variety of fruits and vegetables. Specific advice is given for people with breast or prostate cancer.

This volume provides detailed information about how to start eating a healthy vegan diet. Practical suggestions include breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snack ideas; shopping suggestions; and tips for revising conventional recipes.

The second half of the book consists of more than 130 vegan recipes. A nutritional analysis is provided for each dish.

While this book would be an especially useful resource for anyone diagnosed with cancer, it could help anyone plan a healthier diet. Of course, as the authors state, all cancer treatments-including the dietary changes discussed in this book-must take into account individual needs and should be discussed with your doctor.

The Cancer Survivor's Guide (ISBN 978-1-57067-225-5) is published by Healthy Living Publications. It has 246 pages and retails for $19.95. Purchase the book online at [ http://astore.amazon.com/httpwwwvrgorg-20/detail/1570672253 ] Reviewed by Reed Mangels, PhD, RD.

* * *

Chicken Soup
http://astore.amazon.com/httpwwwvrgorg-20/detail/0810983265 ]
By Jean Van Leeuwen

Upon seeing the title Chicken Soup, one wouldn't think this children's book could be veggie-friendly. Nevertheless, this sweet tale of comic misunderstandings is suitable for kids ages 4 through 8.

The author creatively tells the story of Mrs. Farmer, who has taken out a huge soup pot and appears to be about to cook chicken soup. A cow proceeds to pass this startling message on to all the chickens via other animals on the farm. The chickens hide; however, Little Chickie has a cold and keeps on sneezing wherever she takes cover. Each time the young chick sneezes, all of the other chickens have to find a new hiding spot on the farm.

Eventually, Mr. Farmer is able to catch the young chicken and brings her to Mrs. Farmer. This is when the readers learn that, instead of preparing chicken soup, Mrs. Farmer has made some vegetable soup for Little Chickie to help her feel better.

Chicken Soup (ISBN 978-8109-8326-7) is published by Abrams Books for Young Readers. This hardcover book retails for $16.95 and can be purchased online [ http://astore.amazon.com/httpwwwvrgorg-20/detail/0810983265 ] or in your local bookstore. Reviewed by Debra Wasserman.

* * *

The 30-Minute Vegan
http://astore.amazon.com/httpwwwvrgorg-20/detail/B002FQOHY2 ]
By Mark Reinfeld and Jennifer Murray

This husband-and-wife team share their passion for vegan cooking in a new, quick-and-easy cookbook. The recipe section starts off with smoothies and other beverages and then moves on to breakfast/brunch dishes, including Onion-Zucchini Corn Cakes prepared with spelt flour, flaxseeds, rice milk, zucchini, and onions. Next, you'll find snack ideas, such as Crispy Kale (baked kale with olive oil, nutritional yeast, and salt) and Savory Toasted Pepitas (consisting of pumpkin seeds, soy sauce, maple syrup, sesame oil, and vinegar).

Lunch recipes include several wraps and sandwiches. You will also find a wide variety of soups and great tasting salads, such as Coleslaw with Shaved Fennel and a Tuna-Free Tempeh Salad. Among the supper dishes are Tofu Saag (an Indian dish usually prepared with cheese) and Chipotle Chile-Rubbed Southwest Tempeh. The desserts section brings tasty options like Chocolate-Sesame Bonbons and Luscious Live Pie.

Nutritional analyses are not provided; however, most recipes do not appear to be high in fat. Plenty of tips and resources are offered throughout this book.

The 30-Minute Vegan (ISBN 978-0-7382-1327-9) is published by Lifelong Books. This book retails for $18.95 and can be purchased online at [ http://astore.amazon.com/httpwwwvrgorg-20/detail/B002FQOHY2 ]. Reviewed by Debra Wasserman.


8) INTERVIEW REQUEST FROM FREELANCER FOR PEOPLE WITH VEGAN PETS

We received a request from a vegan freelance writer who is writing the quarterly newsletter for a vegan pet food company and needs to interview people with vegan pets who have had positive experiences. If you can help, please contact Terri at: terriannsnutritionsolutions@gmail.com


9) ECOFAIR 2011 - REISTERSTOWN, MD

Come visit VRG's booth at Ecofair!

Sunday, June 5th, 2011
12pm-3pm
Pearlstone Conference and Retreat Center
5425 Mt. Gilead Road, Reisterstown, MD 21136

$5.00 General Admission
$20.00 max. Family Admission

Click here [ http://www.ecobikeride.org/ecofair.php ] for more information about the event.


10) SUBWAY™ TO TEST MARKET FALAFEL THROUGHOUT ILLINOIS AFTER SUCCESSFUL CHICAGO TEST

by Jeanne Yacoubou, MS
VRG Research Director

April 15, 2011 - Begun in April 2010 at approximately fifty Subway™ Chicago locations, the successful falafel test menu item will be offered "in a few weeks" at all Illinois Subway™ stores according to the Subway™ regional office in Chicago. Falafel is a Middle Eastern food made principally with garbanzo beans.

According to the regional Subway™ office in Chicago, the falafel patty itself is all-vegetable. As is customary, it may be ordered on any bread product offered at Subway™.

The all-vegetable falafel "puck," identified as such by Zaibak Brothers and Company™, the family-owned Chicago manufacturer of the falafel test item, arrives "flash frozen and 80% cooked" at Subway™ locations according to the regional Chicago Subway™ office. The cooking process is completed in a TurboChef™ oven separate from all egg and meat products. Pucks are placed on specially designed paper intended for one-time use and heated until crispy on the outside and "fluffy and moist" on the inside. Three pucks come on a six-inch sub; six on a foot-long. Now, in Chicago stores, a foot-long falafel sub is offered for $5.00.

The falafel sandwich is served with a cucumber sauce that contains dairy. Patrons may request the Fat Free Sweet Onion Sauce that is an all-vegetable sauce available at Subway™. Tomatoes, onions, cucumbers, and olive oil are standard at all Subway™ stores and may be selected as condiments for the falafel menu item.

The VRG is very pleased that Subway™, which now is the leader among all restaurant chains, including McDonald's™, in terms of number of store locations, offers a "non-traditional" menu item that is a favorite among many vegetarians and vegans. This is not surprising for Subway™ given its non-traditional tendencies. In fact, according to a March 2011 Wall Street Journal article, Subway™ regularly opens outlets in non-traditional locations such as an automobile showroom in California; an appliance store in Brazil; a ferry terminal in Seattle; a riverboat in Germany; and a Goodwill store in South Carolina. Currently, approximately one-fourth of Subway locations are in non-traditional locations.

Mr. Don Fertman, Subway's™ Chief Development Officer, stated, "The non-traditional is becoming traditional." With the falafel sandwich, Subway™ is non-traditional in a fast food/quick service chain food sense, too. With time and customer support, the "non-traditional' falafel can become "traditional" fast food/quick service chain fare. To show support for this sandwich, and to encourage Subway™ to adopt is as part of its standard menu, purchase this item when in an Illinois Subway™ and encourage your Midwest friends and family to do so. Become a friend of Subway™ falafel on Facebook and post a favorable comment requesting that it become a permanent menu item: [ http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=144712849001&v=wall#!/group.php?gid=144712849001&v=info ]

For more information on quick service chains, see

http://www.vrg.org/fastfoodinfo.htm#subway_article ] [ http://www.vrg.org/fastfoodinfo.htm ] [ http://www.vrg.org/vote/ ]


11) RESEARCH PARTICIPATION REQUEST FROM GRAD STUDENT

The following study participation request is from a graduate student from East Stroudsburg University of Pennsylvania who is composing a thesis which will look at the perception of a vegetarian/vegan and omnivore diet on health status.

Please click on the following link to access the survey:

https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/jennyklock ]


12) LETTER FROM READER ABOUT NAAN

We received this note from a reader:

I was reading your latest Vegetarian Journal and felt compelled to write because of info from your Nutrition Hotline. It is mentioned that naan is usually vegan. I think this may be misleading. I was in India two times - 1st for 2 weeks, then for two months. Both times I found it hard to be a vegan because milk and yogurt are added to so many things. I did eat the naan the first time because a waiter said it did not have dairy in it (now I think that was a misunderstanding or a willingness to please). Since, I have found that it usually does have dairy in it and avoided it my second time there. I have tried to buy it here in stores like Whole Foods and it always has milk in it.

I have run into the same thing in Indian restaurants in the US. I just do not eat naan now. I was at a wedding in CA at a nice restaurant a couple of years ago and asked them. The waiter assured me it was not made with milk. So I decided to go talk to the cooks who were outside cooking the naan in barrels. They said that their batter did have milk in it.

When I was in India I was working for a company that was owned by an Indian-American and employed many people from India. When I asked them about it they said as far as they knew, it was usually made with milk. Maybe the preference for naan made with yogurt, milk, or water is regional, I am not sure.

-Michelle

The author of the Nutrition Hotline said the reader does bring up valid points that naan does sometimes contain animal products. She said, "In my experience when I went to Indian restaurants, I have been told almost 100% of the time that naan does not contain dairy/egg if it is not brushed with ghee/butter. Certainly you should ask the wait staff, but as examples above illustrate, this isn't a certainty either."

We asked the opinion of Saurabh Dalal, who is a long time vegan Jain and active with the Vegetarian Society of D.C. and the International Vegetarian Union. He said, "I usually do not eat naan because I assume it has dairy in it. In the U.S., I believe some/many Indian restaurants also use eggs, which would likely not be the case in India. I would not say naan is usually vegan. Often the roti or puri is vegan...but it's still good to ask the wait-staff if there is any milk/dairy, egg, or even butter or ghee put on top."

So the consensus seems to be to avoid naan. If anyone is certain of vegan naan options, please let us know. Also, what is your experience with roti?

For information about calcium content of popular Indian dishes (vegan versions), see [ http://www.vrg.org/journal/vj2009issue4/2009_issue4_calcium_indian.php ]

UPDATE:

We found in the Punjab store in Baltimore a product called naan that was labeled 100% vegetarian, parve, and halal. So this product appears to be nondairy. It shouldn't have dairy if parve, though could have eggs. However, there are no obvious eggs on the ingredients label. It does contain cane sugar and l-cysteine. This product was distributed by Kontos Foods and labeled as Alexander's Great Flatbreads. They have several varieties of naan.

For more information, see [ http://208.64.161.54/kontos/Pages/products_flatbread.lasso?markets=foodservice ]

http://208.64.161.54/kontos/Pages/product_detail.lasso?-KeyValue=13&-Token.Action=&image=1product_detail.lasso?-KeyValue=13&-Token.Action=&image=1 ]


13) ATHLETES AND A VEGETARIAN DIET

Links to related articles on our website. Compiled by Corey Bivins

Can I be a vegan athlete?

Sports Nutrition Guidelines For the Vegetarian
http://www.vrg.org/nutshell/athletes.htm ]

http://www.vrg.org/links/#Athletes ]

Vegetarian Action
http://www.vrg.org/journal/vj2002issue1/2002issue1action.htm ]
Vegetarianism and Tennis: A Natural Partnership
http://www.vrg.org/journal/vj2006issue2/vj2006issue2action.htm ]
Chef Ralph Estevez
http://www.vrg.org/journal/vj2008issue3/action.htm ]
Dwayne DeRosario: Message from the Yards
http://www.vrg.org/journal/vj2001nov/2001novdwayne.htm ]
Vegan Weightlifting: What Does the Science Say?
http://www.vrg.org/journal/vj2003issue4/vj2003issue4weight.htm ]
The Vegan Teen Athlete
http://www.vrg.org/journal/vj2010issue1/2010_issue1_vegan_teen_athlete.php ]
You Don't Have to Eat Meat to Build Muscle
http://www.vrg.org/journal/vj2003issue1/vj2003issue1scientific.htm ]
Updated Vegan Guide to Leather Alternatives
http://www.vrg.org/blog/2010/12/27/updated-vegan-guide-to-leather-alternatives/ ]
Bringing Cruelty-Free Athletic Gear and Wear to the Masses
http://www.vrg.org/journal/vj2008issue1/vj2008issue1veggiebits.htm ]

14) LABELING OF HOUSEHOLD CLEANING PRODUCTS

Natural Foods Merchandiser reports:

According to a Whole Foods Market online survey of nearly 2,500 U.S. adults, three out of four respondents think the government requires manufacturers of household cleaning products to list ingredients on the label. In fact, the fed doesn't. Beginning in April 2012, however, all household cleaning products carried by Whole Foods must list every single ingredient on product packaging.


15) PIZZA HUT AUSTRALIA

by Jeanne Yacoubou, MS
VRG Research Director

A reader living in Australia wrote us to find out information about the ingredients in the food at Pizza Hut. She inquired at her local restaurant but was told it may take some time to get answers.

The VRG sent an email to Pizza Hut Australia and received a speedy reply from a Pizza Hut food technologist. She told us the following "regarding rennet in the cheeses used at Pizza Hut Australia."

"...[I]t is important to note that not all of our cheeses are vegetarian.

The mozzarella cheese we use on all our pizzas, (including our standard, 11-inch large pizzas [in the] Legends range), contains non-animal rennet and so is classified as a vegetarian cheese. This includes the mozzarella cheese which we use to stuff the crust of Stuffed Crust Pizzas.

We also have cheddar (or Tasty) cheese available in stores and this is made with animal- derived rennet and so is NOT a vegetarian cheese. On our permanent menu, cheddar is used in Cheese Pizza and also in the whole Mia (9-inch) Pizza range. Cheddar is also used in promotional pizzas or side items from time to time. Examples of promotional products include Big Dippers, Dipsticks, and Cheesy Bites Pizza.

Note that the whole Mia Pizza range (9-inch) contains both mozzarella and cheddar (or Tasty) cheese and because the cheddar cheese contains animal-derived rennet it is not vegetarian.

We also add feta to various pizzas and the feta cheese contains non-animal rennet and so like the mozzarella is vegetarian.

It's also important to be aware that Pizza Hut does not guarantee that all Veggie Pizzas are "vegetarian" because of the way our pizzas are made. Pizzas are topped from ingredients stored in pots in a refrigerated bench (make-table) using topping cups. Pizza Hut also prepares a large volume of Meat Lovers Pizza on site which include many different types of ham, bacon bits, bacon rashers, meatballs, chorizo sausage and chicken, all of which are meat products and all of which are prepared on the same make table; are cooked on the same pans in the same oven; and are also cut using the same board and knife as the vegetarian pizzas.

So with that in mind, cross contamination of meats with veggies is a definite reality, especially given that the same topping cups are used for both.

We have Veggie Pizzas on our menu and every effort is made to ensure that no meat lands on these (and any other) vegetable-only pizzas, however it cannot be guaranteed. Because of the above, we cannot offer strictly vegetarian items.

Please be advised that Pizza Hut does change product formulations from time to time. [T]herefore, the information above should be checked on a regular basis."

In a follow-up email, The VRG asked if the "non-animal rennet" used by Pizza Hut Australia was genetically modified Chymax™. (This form of rennet is replicated today in microorganisms although originally it was derived from genetic material extracted long ago from a young ruminant's (i.e., calf's or kid's) stomach.)

In response, we were told that "[o]ur suppliers specify either "animal derived" or "non-animal derived" rennet in our cheeses. I do not have access to further details about the precise rennet used in their manufacture process."

Readers may like to compare the information presented here from Pizza Hut Australia with that collected in June 2010 from Pizza Hut USA:

http://www.vrg.org/blog/?s=pizza+hut ]

To support VRG research, you can donate here: [ https://www.givedirect.org/give/givefrm.asp?CID=1565 ]

The contents of this newsletter and our other publications, including The 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 best judgment about whether a product is suitable for you. To be sure, do further research or confirmation on your own.


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.)

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 ] Donate: [ https://www.givedirect.org/give/givefrm.asp?CID=1565 ]

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.


ABOUT VRG-NEWS

VRG-NEWS is the e-mail newsletter of The Vegetarian Resource Group. This is an announcement list so subscriber messages are not accepted by the list. If you have a technical question about the list, please contact us at vrg@vrg.org. If you have any suggestions, ideas, or corrections to VRG-NEWS, please direct them to vrg@vrg.org. Thanks!

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Contents of VRG-NEWS are copyright 2011 by The Vegetarian Resource Group. The newsletter may be freely distributed in electronic or print form provided its contents are not altered and credit is given to The Vegetarian Resource Group, P.O. Box 1463, Baltimore, MD 21203.