FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
August 23, 2016
Contact: Joy Waters, Producer joy@PositiveMediaHawaii.com
VEGFEST OAHU EVENT PROVIDES SOLUTIONS TO
HEALTH CARE CRISIS AND CLIMATE CHANGE
Free Community Festival will Inspire, Educate and Reward the Taste Buds
HONOLULU, HI — Hawaii’s first-ever VegFest Oahu, a free community event celebrating plant-based, sustainable living, will be held on Saturday, September 24, 2016 from 1:00-6:30 p.m. at the Frank Fasi Civic Grounds near Honolulu Hale. VegFest Oahu is a grassroots effort organized by an all-volunteer team of local island leaders in the plant-based and environmental movements and sponsored by a coalition of businesses that support a healthier Hawaii. VegFest Oahu is an opportunity for the public to learn practical ways to reverse Hawaii’s health care crisis and participate in solutions to mitigate climate change.
Hawaii has the highest rate of diabetes in the country, one in four residents are obese, and diet-related disease cause almost 700,000 deaths in the U.S. each year. According to the Center for Disease Control almost 40% of adults eat less than one fruit every day. Additionally, the University of Hawaii reports that Hawaii’s island state is impacted by climate change from a rise in sea level causing erosion and flooding, higher ocean acidity and coral death, and a decrease in trade winds and rainfall. The WorldWatch Institute says that 50% of the Greenhouse Gases causing climate change comes from the animal agriculture industry and its byproducts (See Fact Sheet below for more facts and references).
VegFest Oahu will provide inspiration and education to attendees on how to improve their nutrition and increase awareness about the link between diet and climate change. Attendees will get to: taste delicious vegan food from local restaurants; hear speakers about health and environmental topics; watch plant-based cooking demos by expert chefs, and more (see “Event Highlights” below and the complete lineup on our website: http://vegfestoahu.com).
“Our approach is ‘Aloha Activism’, sharing the message of health, sustainability and compassion in thought-provoking, inclusive, and encouraging ways,” says VegFest Oahu Producer, Joy Waters, who is also the founder of Positive Media Hawaii. “We offer a fun-filled experience that will create new attitudes and behaviors. We believe VegFest Oahu will be the tipping point towards more sustainable habits in our island community.”
VegFest Oahu strives to be zero waste and plastic free and is complying with guidelines to be certified as a Green Event by the Hawaii State Energy Office. “We require that our vendors do not sell products in single-use plastic packaging and all disposables used for food service must be 100% compostable,” says Doorae Shin, Waste Reduction Coordinator at Kokua Hawaii Foundation, and VegFest Oahu’s Greening Supervisor. “VegFest Oahu is a showcase for vegan values and sustainable living and we expect all our vendors to commit to these high standards.”
“We intend VegFest Oahu to be a bridge builder reaching out to all people trying to improve their health and the planet,” says Michael Wall, the festival’s Director and an Advanced Artistic Teaching Partner through the Hawaii State Foundation on Culture and the Art’s Artists in the Schools Program. “We want to show how a vegan diet is nutritious, tasty, easy to achieve and will minimize your environmental footprint. VegFest Oahu is a way to meet caring folks who are passionate about making a better world and get to know them in a casual, friendly setting.”
VegFest Oahu recently launched the crowd funding campaign “Invest In The Fest” Bumper Sticker Fundraiser. The sticker’s slogan, “HI on Veggies”, was crowd sourced through a Facebook poll, and is rewarded to individuals who donate $11 or more to support the event.
Event Highlights: (full lineup on our website: http://vegfestoahu.com)
Headlining Speaker: Keegan Kuhn, co-director of the groundbreaking feature-length environmental documentary, “Cowspiracy: The Sustainability Secret”, presents “The Link between Diet and Climate Change”. Kuhn states, “Absolutely the fossil fuel industry is causing huge ecological devastation, but when compared to what animal agriculture is doing to the climate, water pollution, topsoil erosion, deforestation, species extinction, ocean dead zones and habitat destruction, it pales in comparison.” A new cut of the film from executive producer Leonardo DiCaprio is now streaming exclusively on Netflix.
Speaker lineup also includes: Dr. Irminne Van Dyken, vegan surgeon from Queens Medical Center, presents “10 Ways You Can Avoid My Scalpel” and Michael Kramer of Natural Investments presents “Make a Difference With Your Money by Shopping and Investing with Your Values.”
Expert Chef Demo lineup includes: Sylvia Thompson of Hale Aina award winning Greens & Vines Restaurant showing how to make Zucchini Fettuccine with Macadamia Nut Alfredo and Marinated Mushrooms. Edgar Edge, Food Service Director of Down to Earth Organic & Natural, showing how to make Seitan Pepper Steak.
Food Booths include: Down to Earth Organic & Natural, Peace Cafe, Juicy Brew, The Cut, Ke Nui Kitchen, India Cafe, Il Gelato, and more.
Musicians include: Paul Izak. Quadrophonix. Gerardo Velez.
Sustain Hawaii, Down to Earth Organic & Natural,, Blue Zones Project, Pono Home, ‘Ekahi Ornish Program, Positive Media Hawaii, Vegetarian Society of Hawaii, VegFund, and Natural Awakenings Magazine.
Health Care Crisis
2009 estimated medical care costs, direct and indirect, for obesity among adults in Hawai‘i was more than $1 billion. Without effective interventions, half of adults in Hawaii are projected to be obese by the year 2030. 1.
One in four adults in Hawaii is obese. 2.
Hawaii has the highest rate of diabetes in the country. Cost of diabetes was $245 billion nationwide in 2012. Lifestyle changes in diet and exercise is the best treatment and prevention. 3.
One in every three children entering kindergarten in our state is already overweight or obese. 4.
More than one-third (36%) of adolescents and 38% of adults said they ate fruit less than once a day, while 38% of adolescents and 23% of adults said they ate vegetables less than once a day. 5.
Higher animal protein intake is associated with mortality and replacing it with plant protein would decrease risk of death. Specifically a 3% increase in plant-protein is linked to 10% decrease in overall mortality. 6.
Meat consumption is associated with obesity. 7.
Unhealthy diets contribute to approximately 678,000 deaths each year in the U.S., due to nutrition- and obesity-related diseases, such as heart disease, cancer, and type 2 diabetes. 8.
Animal Agriculture Linked to Climate Change
51% of global greenhouse gas emissions come from the livestock industry and its byproducts. 9.
Agriculture is responsible for 80% of U.S. water consumption and crops for livestock consumes 56% of that water. 10.
30% of all fresh water in world used for animal agriculture. 11.
70% of the planet’s agricultural land is used for livestock production and 30% of all total land on the planet is used for animal agriculture. 12.
Animal agriculture is the leading cause of modern species extinction, ocean dead zones, water pollution, and habitat destruction. 13.
Rising sea levels in Hawaii will increase coastal flooding and erosion, damage coastal ecosystems and agriculture, decrease rainfall available for drinking water, and warm oceans leading to coral bleaching and disease. 14.
A farm with 2,500 dairy cows produces the same amount of waste as a city of 411,000 people. 15.
If the world ate more plant based, the estimated food-related greenhouse gas emissions could be cut by 70% by 2050. 16.
Changing Habits of Corporate America – Industry Trends
Burger King and nine other restaurant chains, plus Walmart and Sam’s Club, set a goal to transition to a 100% cage-free egg supply by 2025. 17.
Plant-based proteins are the most important trend in tech (beating out 3D printing, self-driving cars, mobile medical data, and virtual reality). 18.
Bill Gates invested in Beyond Meat (now releasing a vegan burger that bleeds) and Pinnacle Foods acquired Gardein Inc, a plant-based protein protein brand. 19.
Research firm, Mintel, estimates the 2014 sales of frozen meat alternatives were $460 million. 20.
Fashion giant, G. Armani announced his company will no longer use fur starting in Autumn 2016. 21.
New York Times food writer Mark Bittman couldn’t tell the difference between Beyond Meat plant-protein and real chicken in a taste test. 22.
- Hawaii News Now, http://www.hawaiinewsnow.com/story/29611447/program-for-blind-supports-healthy-eating
- Hawaii News Now, http://www.hawaiinewsnow.com/story/23224841/study-1-in-4-hawaii-adults-are-obese
- University of Hawaii John A Burns School of Medicine study, http://khon2.com/2014/07/28/hawaiis-high-rate-of-diabetes-spurs-on-medical-school-study/
- State of Hawaii, Department of Health, http://health.hawaii.gov/physical-activity-nutrition/
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. State Indicator Report on Fruits and Vegetables, 2013. Atlanta, GA: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, US Dept. of Health and Human Services; 2013. http://www.cdc.gov/nutrition/downloads/State-Indicator-Report-Fruits-Vegetables-2013.pdf.[PDF – 4.51 MB] Accessed December 23, 2013.
- Journal of American Medical Association, Internal Medicine Journal study, 2016. http://archinte.jamanetwork.com/article.aspx?articleid=2540540
- National Institute of Health, “Meat consumption is associated with obesity”, 2009. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2697260/
- 2013 Journal of the American Medical Association, U.S Burden of Disease Collaborators (Murray CJL, et al.). “The State of US Health, 1990-2010: Burden of Diseases, Injuries, and Risk Factors”, vol. 310, pp. s178-s179.
- 2009 study by WorldWatch Institute http://www.worldwatch.org/node/6294
- United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), http://www.ers.usda.gov/topics/farm-practices-management/irrigation-water-use/background.aspx
- 2013 Science Direct, “Water Resources and Industry” study, http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S2212371713000024
- 2006 United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) study “Livestock’s Long Shadow”, http://www.fao.org/docrep/010/a0701e/a0701e00.HTM
- Scientific American study http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/ocean-dead-zones/ AND Florida International University study published in Science of the Total Environment, 2015. http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0048969715303697
- Hawaii Tourism Authority and the University of Hawaii report “Climate Change Impacts Hawaii”, 2014. http://seagrant.soest.hawaii.edu/sites/default/files/publications/smfinal-hawaiiclimatechange.pdf
- U.S. Environmental Protection Agency report “Risk Assessment Evaluation for Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations (CAFOs)”, 2004. goo.gl/lnzRYP
- U.S. National Academy of Sciences, “Analysis and valuation of the health and climate change cobenefits of dietary change,” 2016. http://www.pnas.org/content/113/15/4146.abstract
- Walmart press release, 2016. http://news.walmart.com/news-archive/2016/04/05/walmart-us-announces-transition-to-cage-free-egg-supply-chain-by-2025 AND WattAgNet report. http://www.wattagnet.com/articles/25770-major-restaurant-chains-switching-to-cage-free-eggs
- Milken Institute Global Conference, Executive Director of Google’s parent company Alphabet, 2016. http://www.organicauthority.com/vegan-meat-is-now-the-biggest-trend-in-the-tech-industry/
- Bill Gates Notes, https://www.gatesnotes.com/About-Bill-Gates/Future-of-Food AND Pinnacle press release, 2014. http://investors.pinnaclefoods.com/investor-center/news-and-events/news-releases/news-releases-details/2014/Pinnacle-Foods-Inc-to-Acquire-Garden-Protein-International-Inc/default.aspx
- CNN Money, 2016. http://money.cnn.com/2016/05/22/news/companies/beyond-meat-plant-burger/
- Vogue Magazine, 2016. http://www.vogue.co.uk/news/2016/03/22/giorgio-armani-reports-fur-free-collections
- New York Times, Op-Ed Column, 2012. http://www.nytimes.com/2012/03/11/opinion/sunday/finally-fake-chicken-worth-eating.html