My title is a bit deceptive. Perhaps it should read "A humane alternative to eggs," but tell me, how many people would want to read something with a title like that?
Still, I hope that anyone who loves eggs, but despises the cruel suffering of our caged chickens, will at least want to read about a very compassionate and enterprising young man named Josh Tetrick. As Hampton Creek's CEO, he aims to revolutionize the food industry with a plant-based egg alternative.
Bill Gates, in his endorsement of a vegan lifestyle to save the world, believes that it is the only way we can feed the millions and millions of people who face starvation daily. We need to use our grain and water resources to feed them instead of the animals we raise for food. And he mentioned even eating faux meat and eggs to help do this.
I had already heard about the first meatless hamburger that tastes and looks like a real hamburger, but I was surprised when he mentioned faux eggs. So, I was delighted to learn more about them in "allanimals", a bi-monthly magazine put out by the Humane Society of the US.
We already have an "Egg Replacer" product we can use anywhere calling for a binder, but it can't be used to make a scrambled egg dish or a quiche. Nor will this new product yet do this, but Tetrick says that in the future he hopes to develop a liquid product that could be used to make scrambled eggs.
For now we hope that his product--a pale green powder called Beyond Eggs--will lead to the eventual elimination of the cruel battery cages where our chickens are forced to "live" miserable lives day in and day out.
His product gets its green color from a variety of pea, which the company's scientists and chefs identified after testing 287 plants. It also contains sunflower and canola oil and other natural ingredients. It can be used to replace eggs in baked goods like cookies or in sauces like mayonnaise.
There is a picture of this young handsome entrepreneur in this HSUS article, which is titled "Best Laid Plans". He looks more like a movie-star idol than businessman. But this man is much more than either. He is driven by compassion to find a product that does not depend on eggs laid on factory farms by hens crammed in battery ages where they can't even spread their wings.
Even incarcerated criminals and murderers are allowed to exercise, and yet these poor hapless chickens are given no consideration at all as to their needs by virtue of an exploitive factory system that we endorse every time we buy their "cheap" eggs.
The food industry traditionally uses processed eggs in either liquid, frozen, or powdered form to make cookies and mayonnaise. One-third of factory-farm eggs goes for this purpose. Tetrick hopes to take over as much of this processed-egg market he can because he says his product is not only more humane, but is even 20 percent less expensive. It is also better for the environment and healthier for us because it has no cholesterol and has none of the food-safety risks of eggs from factory farms.
This year Beyond Eggs will be used by two major food companies. This product will also be available to consumers through Hampton Creek's website. I plan to ask The Bin--my neighborhood health store--about carrying this product as well.
HSUS' article is worth reading and I only have touched some salient points. But I would like to share what this young man said to HSUS' Karen E. Lange, senior writer, about his vision for Beyond Eggs and where he hopes it will lead.
Her question to Tetrick was, how did your concern for animals lead you to develop an alternative-egg product?
"About 1.1 trillion eggs are laid every single year globally," he responded. "Most come from places that we wouldn't be too proud of if we saw them, places that are awfully cruel, awfully unsustainable, and pretty bad for our health. And I just thought that there's got to be a better way to take the animal entirely out of the equation when it comes to conventional egg production and do something that's better and less expensive."
What a marvelous, compassionate, and beautiful human being. What else can I say except that I hope and pray that his vision will lead to the improvement of the billions of chickens globally who today are terribly exploited--" living" lives of pure hell.
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