Americans are fortunate indeed, and have many reasons to give thanks and show appreciation for all that we have been given, and all of the opportunities that await. Unfortunately, our annual celebration of our abundance of food and resources results in the slaughter of 45 MILLION turkeys every year, with over 20 million more slaughtered for Christmas. Many Americans are starting to question the ethics of animal slaughter as a center of celebration and are adopting more compassionate, healthy, and peaceful traditions.
The great news is that there are many companies making vegan turkey alternatives for the holidays. They are easy to prepare, taste great, and are far more healthy and nutritious than eating the body of a dead bird.
Here are some fun ideas that we think will help you come up with your own Thanksgiving feast, without featuring violence as the main attraction.
1. Use a turkey made of vegetables for a centerpiece
2. Serve one of the many vegan turkey or holiday roasts as the main dish - let a turkey live.
3. Watch a movie like "My Life as a Turkey" with your family.
4. Visit a farm animal sanctuary and meet a living turkey face to face.
5. Try making some totally new dishes that you have never tried before using in-season Thanksgiving holiday foods (see below for recipe ideas).
Why not real turkey?
(click on image to play video)
Did you know...
Turkeys have a field of vision that ranges about 270 degrees, can see in full color, and can even see ultraviolet light.
Wild turkeys can fly at speeds of up to 55 miles per hour and run at speeds of up to 25 miles per hour. (Unfortunately, factory farmed turkeys can’t fly at all.)
Turkeys enjoy exploring and can remember the detailed geographic content of 1,000 acres.
Turkeys are affectionate and sensitive. They love to be petted, held, and even hugged.
A turkey’s head and facial features actually change color, turning red, pink, blue, or white depending on their mood. When calm, they’re gray or blue. When excited or angry, they turn red.
They’re music lovers. It’s true! These birds love gobbling along to their favorite jams and even dancing!
Turkeys spend lots of time with their families, so of course, they feel sad when a member of their family passes away—just as humans do.
Turkeys are born with instincts that allow them to distinguish which insects are dangerous to eat and which snakes are poisonous—they can do this and so many other things without having to be taught. That’s more than we humans can say!
Scientists have found more than 20 distinct vocalizations in wild turkeys, and the birds recognize each other based on their unique voices.
Benjamin Franklin admired these “birds of courage” so much, that he believed that they should be named the national bird of the US instead of the bald eagle.
Turkeys Are "People" Too! Turkeys have personalities, just as dogs and cats do. According to Oregon State University poultry scientist Tom Savage, turkeys are social and playful. Genevieve, a rescued turkey, comes when she is called, loves classical music and dances to the flute.
Also check out:
PETA: Turkeys Used for Food
Huffington Post: This is How You Slaughter a Turkey for Thanksgiving (on a small farm)
Mint Press News: Torture & Terror - Why Thanksgiving is Tough for Turkeys
Free From Harm: Humane Turkey Slaughter