Happy World Vegetarian Day!
To celebrate, here's a fascinating infographic from the nice folks over at GetYourGuide. For starters, Vietnam isn't on this list? WHAT? There are 9 countries that do veggie-ism better than the 'Nam? I guess I'll have to find out for myself. I find it hard to believe, but I'm willing to open my mind. You'd feel the same if you experienced the black magic done to tofu there, but I digress.
Getting to the facts, no one is surprised by Portland and San Francisco, but Canada and Thailand? Never woulda guessed. Luxembourg consuming more meat per capita than the US? C'mon, Ron Swansons of America, up your game. But don't actually. 7000 lives saved every year, that's why. My question, though, is whether that means 7000 animals not born or not consumed – if they're just not consumed...what happens to them? Apart from the poop contributing to the methane in the ozone, BUT LET'S NOT THINK ABOUT THAT.
Anyway, I hope you found this infographic as interesting and helpful as I did, but I hope it didn't make you as hungry (I could seriously go for a crepe right now or some falafel, or a crepe filled with falafel). If it did, those look like some sweet apps to employ on your search for dinner (or use my theory: just skip it and go straight for dessert (almost always meat-free)).
And, ps, if you find yourself in Vietnam and you're veggie, say, "Em ăn chay." You'll be absolutely delighted, vegetarian or not. I wasn't 100% vegetarian there, but was most of the time simply because the meat was a little creepy and everything they do with veggies and tofu is practically ungodly. Check out the Loving Hut in HCMC. This infographic mentions Loving Hut in Paris, and while Loving Hut in HCMC was fantastic, Loving Hut in the Bay Area is pas bien. Maybe like desserts, everything is better in Paris, faux-viande included.
Now who wants to go to Lehka Hlava with me to celebrate?
Top countries and cities: HappyCow data (availability and popularity of vegetarian restaurants)
Numbers and percentages of vegetarians (i.e. percentage of vegetarians in India): Stuart, Tristram. 2006. The Bloodless Revolution: A Cultural History of Vegetarianism from 1600 to Modern Times. New York, NY: W. W. Norton & Company
Top 5 Meat Loving Countries: UN Food and Agriculture Organization (2009 State of Food and Agriculture Report)
Animal lives saved: http://vegetariancalculator.com/
Environmental impact: Robbins, John. 1987. Diet for a New America. Tiburon, CA: Stillpoint Publishing
Protein per acre meat vs grains: Cox, Peter. 2002. You Don’t Need Meat. New York, NY: Thomas Dunne Books
Top Vegetarian Restaurants: HappyCow data (traffic and customer reviews)
U.S. Data: Gallup Poll (http://www.gallup.com/poll/156215/Consider-Themselves-Vegetarians.aspx), American Meat Institute (AMI) and Food Marketing Institute (FMI)