matgb: Artwork of 19th century upper class anarchist, text: MatGB (Hungry)
[personal profile] matgb
Hmm, good news for a change, Masterfoods no longer evil:
Mars said it became "very clear, very quickly" that it had made a mistake.
Merely very very stupid. Was going to post about the sheer idiocy when [ profile] mooism first posted on the 8th (note, that was 6 days before the BBC caught up), but things got lost in the shuffle. They were using the excuse that "only strict vegetarians" would be affected, and in a way, they'd be right. When I eat out, I don't tend to worry whether the cheese is made using rennet, I'm not that strict. But if a company does something blitheringly stupid, and says that it shouldn't bother me at all?

Worse, for them, it would've meant that many of my non-vegetarian friends and family would have stopped buying their products; why buy Masterfoods when Cadbury do something just as good? Stupid stupid company decision. Still, while I'll try to stick to Green and Blacks when I can afford it, and Cadbury when I can't, I can still buy Masterfoods now, they're idiots, but they're not
evil like Nestlé. Ah, informed consumers making choices within an active market, and forcing companies to change. You can see why so many capitalists are anti-market at heart, right?

The only problem of course is that some of the statistics used to claim how many vegetarians there are in the country are likely very very wrong. Why? Because even smart people are stupid:
Twenty years after the IQ tests were carried out in 1970, 366 of the participants said they were vegetarian - although more than 100 reported eating either fish or chicken.
Guys? Vegetarians don't eat fish, let alone chicken. So as virtually every survey of the nature relies on self reporting, and approx 1/3rd of self-described vegetarians are pescetarians at best, the market impact might be smaller than it should be. People assuming I can eat fish despite being vegetarian is probably one of my biggest pet-hates, and it isn't helped by the ignorance of some who self-describe wrongly. It's a bit like self-described Christians who don't go to church; they may quack like a duck, but they sure as hell don't walk like a duck.

Oh, it's National Vegetarian Week as of tomorrow, so expect dodgy media coverage, false assumptions and some of my more idiotic ethical eaters to be a bit too assertive in various places, sorry about that.

Date: 2007-05-20 01:45 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
It's a good move, the right move, and shows how much the Vegetarian Society and vegetarianism as a whole has progressed that it can force a major company to rethink it's plans, and so quickly too.

Pro or anti about Vegetarianism doesn't matter. this is all about consumer power and market forces. People trying to promote or slight vegetarianism based on this outcome will just end up looking stupid...

PS You do know G&B is owned by Cadbury's, right? Not that that's a bad thing, 'M just saying.

Date: 2007-05-20 06:36 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
The founder of G&B is a little odd especially if you criticise his mate Mrs McKeith (

And the only chocolate in the range that is actually fair trade is the Maya Gold one. How ethical the others are is not entirely clear.

Date: 2007-05-20 07:40 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
He probably ends up on my side of some of the big picture stuff too.

Of course he's entitled to think that the poo lady is valid. However everyone who actually knows about science is obligated to point out that they're a pair of loons.

Date: 2007-05-20 05:50 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Ah, the old "Vegetarian / Fish" debate...

Date: 2007-05-20 07:36 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
So, having made a massive £13 in tips today, I got a taxi home and am having pepperoni pizza.

Last meat for a week. Well, unless you count... ;)

Date: 2007-05-20 07:53 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
She rang in sick :P

Why for a week, are you just joining in for the hell of it or something?

Yes, LOL. And I want to see if I can do it.

It's not that I don't like veggie food, and I don't eat meat when you're here because it's easier to cook us both the same... but I like meat too. I am, at least, a moderately ETHICAL meat eater - the only meat dish I will eat at work is the sausages because they are local/organic/fluffy sausages.

Date: 2007-05-20 08:25 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Well, yes. My objection is to factory farming as well. Thus I buy organic milk and eggs as well as meat (because they have controls for animal welfare which have to be applied before the stuff can be called organic).

I'll happily eat pig's trotters and other stuff which people think are gross, as long as they are from well looked-after animals...

But yes, am going to try veggieness for a week. I mean, I did it for seven years once; it can't be that hard...

Date: 2007-05-20 08:12 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I don't think I knew you were veggie as well.

The whole "I'm a vegitarian but I eat fish sometimes" makes me twitch. I correct people who assume that about me, but when someone tells me that I reply, "Oh, so you're not a vegitarian then."

Date: 2007-05-21 01:27 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I'm not a vegetarian as I do eat fish, but no other meats. However, I have a tendency to say I'm vegetarian when some one asks me to dinner or whatever as I end up having to spend less time explaining my dietary restrictions than if I say I'm kosher.

It turns out that the easiest way to keep kosher is to be a vegetarian. Fish with fins and scales are considered neither meat nor dairy, which is why I eat it.

Did you know that the Book of Mormon says that Mormons should not eat meat or, if they do, to limit it as much as possible? Most Mormons don't follow that one, but it's in there. Muslims have dietary restrictions, too, of course. Interesting that most religions with dietary restrictions could meet their requirements most easily by becoming vegetarians.

Date: 2007-05-21 10:31 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Does this mean that sharks are herbivorous? (Oh no, I guess they eat seals and stuff.)

"It's a bit like self-described Christians who don't go to church; they may quack like a duck, but they sure as hell don't walk like a duck."

It wouldn't surprise me if ducks are officially fish according to the catholic church (I think beavers are or at least were?), since they're aquatic.

Is this people simply stupidly confusing "animal" with "mammal"; 'I'm a vegetarian, I don't eat animals, but I eat chicken because that's not an animal, it's a bird'?

Date: 2007-05-21 11:19 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Power to the people! It's nice when a company admits it made a mistake. Most companies would just say "you don't like it? suck it up!"

Date: 2007-05-22 07:29 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
*offers link to a veeeeeeery good vegan restaurant*

Veeeeeery good indeed. One of the best in London. Listed in the Top Ten of Vegetarian Eateries in Britain.

Of course the fact I worked there for a year and the headchef is a good friend has nothing to do with my promoting them 0:-)


matgb: Artwork of 19th century upper class anarchist, text: MatGB (Default)
Mat Bowles

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I'm the Chair of the Brighouse branch of the Liberal Democrats.

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