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Vegan for the Holidays


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Vegetarians in Paradise
Words from Other Birds



In each issue Vegetarians in Paradise presents an informative article by a guest contributor on a subject that is of interest to vegetarians and vegans. This month we are reprinting a letter we received from one of our readers in New Jersey. Along with the letter we are also sharing our response.

Hi, VegParadise folks!

I'm writing to thank you for your handy guide to vegetarian airline meals. I've had to do a bit of traveling in the last few months, and your listing has made it much easier to make the meal arrangements. Having a list of how to contact each airline, and what kinds of veggie meals they offer, is terrific -- I printed it out and keep it close to the phone now, for when I make my travel arrangements.

In addition to its usefulness in making plans, having your list has made me realize that the airlines really are trying to meet our needs, even if they don't always understand what those needs are. With that in mind, when I received a strict veggie meal on Continental that was packaged up with several side dishes that contained eggs and dairy, I wrote to let them know about my concern, and I received a nice response that leaves me feeling hopeful that such meals will be planned more carefully in the future. So thank you for providing the background info that has helped me become more active in trying to change things.

Something to note: United serves Now & Zen vegan chocolate chip cookies for dessert with its non-dairy veggie meals, and I think with some of the other veggie meals as well. They're great cookies, and it's nice to see a company devoted to healthful organic foods getting business from such a big corporation.

Thanks again for all the hard work that went into making up that list. I have found it invaluable, and I'm sure others have, as well.

Sincerely,
Laura K.



Hi Laura---

We can't tell you how much we appreciate your note. We know there are people out there reading our magazine, but we don't often receive praise like yours. We are grateful. As we continually say on our web site we are involved in a nonprofit enterprise. We don't make any profit from our effort. In fact, we spend our own money to create the site. Our profit comes in comments like yours.

We would like to tell you and our other readers that gathering this information was not an easy task. The airlines are not what you and I would call "cooperative." The information we have printed was extracted from busy reservations clerks.

We sent letters to the corporate offices of the 33 airlines listed to have them verify the information and provide specifics on the vegetarian meals. A copy of the letter we sent is at the end of this note. After two months we have received only three responses. Those are printed beneath the chart on the web site.

As you can see, the advance notice is a blank space on most entries because the airlines have not responded. The time is probably 24 hours, but we hesitate to make that assumption.

We haven't given up. After the holidays we plan to write to the presidents or CEO's of the non-respondents to encourage them in our effort to provide you with complete information.

We feel that commercial enterprises should be sensitive to the requests of their clientele. Though VEGETARIANS and VEGANS are a small percentage of airline travelers, we do count.

Health and Joy

Zel and Reuben Allen
Vegetarians in Paradise



For information on airline vegetarian meals and to read what others have to say about their experiences, click on http://www.vegparadise.com/airline.html


Click here for past Words from Other Birds Articles


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