Facebook Admin Issues

Facebook Admin Issues

This post is rather difficult as I intend to outline something that really annoys me and to some, it may seem aimed directly at them and in some ways divisive. It isn’t aimed at anyone in particular but, yes, it is slightly devisive. The matter in question has occurred to myself and many other vegan traders on more than one Facebook Group page and I would like to outline why I think the admins have got it wrong.

For a long time, I have been an administrator of more than one Facebook page so I can look at this from both sides of the argument. It concerns advertising. I have on more than one occasion been asked not to mention my Vegan Clothing store on different Facebook VEGAN pages. The reason the administrators ask you not to do this is so that the newsfeed isn’t just a long ream of people selling their wares. I absolutely understand this……to a point.

If a member of a niche group is selling items of interest, I think they should be allowed to talk about their business as long as it is no more than say once a week (or some other reasonable time frame). The result of not being allowed to do so is that the seller has to pay Facebook (a corporation dripping in money) to get their message to the very people in the group that they are already a member of. This is bizarre.

To add insult to injury, on many of the UK VEGAN group pages, I see things like ‘I bought this in Lidl today’ and apparently it is ok to mention supermarkets all day long but the admins don’t want to support the self-employed traders who are spreading the same message of VEGANISM as they are trying to with their page.

It’s very much a case of, on the one hand, there aren’t enough vegan stores about but, on the other hand, we’re not going to help you along as we’re scared of what our page may become but lets mention what the massive corporations (who ALSO SELL MEAT) are selling. My response to all this is that if you don’t support your own subscribers, you won’t have much of a page to be precious about because, frankly, people want a little more than ‘oooh I found this in Asda today.’ (Not that there is anything wrong with sharing your finds but everything in moderation (no pun intended)).

In summary, I appeal to all VEGAN group admins to consider this and maybe set out some guidelines that helps us but also protects the quality of posts on their pages. Also, https://passoom.com stock 100% Vegan, Organic and Toxin Free printed clothing.

Transitioning To A Vegan Lifestyle

Transitioning To A Vegan Lifestyle

From the point of view of help and support on your road to veganism, there is a plethora of information and like-minded chat sites on the internet to ensure your success. Also, as veganism is constantly growing and becoming a more popular choice, it is likely that you may know someone who can offer you advice.

I would like to share with you a few ideas that I found along the way. It is by no means a comprehensive guide but I think everyone will relate to at least one idea.

Slowly, slowly, catchy monkey. Perhaps not the best saying for a vegan but it is a metaphor for saying that a slow, gradual approach is more likely to end in success. As I stated in my last blog post, I stopped with meat and ate just fish. This was for about 3 or 4 months. I then became vegetarian. This was for a longer period. Eventually I decided that I may as well be Vegan as I was already a veggie with an aversion to milk so, from a dairy point of view, I was only giving up cheese and eggs.

Portrait of beautiful young woman with vegetables in grocery bag at home.Planning is crucial. You can’t have a fridge full of bacon, eggs, milk etc. and then suddenly decide ‘right, I’m going vegan!’. You’d starve!!! Many people find it helpful to make a list of vegan alternatives to each meal they have in a week. To be honest, as I am chef in my home, I’d already got alternatives sorted in my head so it was just a case of starting to shop vegan. A big issue for me was snacking. I was sorted for meals but my quick snacks used to be ham sandwiches, fried egg on toast, scrambled egg on toast….you get the idea.

In the vegan world, alternatives to sliced meat tend to be quite expensive when you consider that they are just for snacking. If your budget does stretch to them, there are lots of options. In the UK, Quorn do about 3 or 4 ‘cold meat alternative’ slices. I believe VBites also have a range, most of which are available at your local Holland and Barrett. However, if you are like me and would prefer the bulk of your budget to go to meals, there are loads of cheap snacking ideas. My favourites are stuffing sandwiches, Vegemite on bread or toast, tomatoes on toast and mushrooms on toast. I personally don’t eat fruit but I’m sure bananas are a great bridge to your next meal.

Apologies for readers overseas as the food and stores quoted are all UK-based but I’m sure there will be similar options wherever you may be.

It can be tough, especially for young people who live with family and are not responsible for buying or cooking food. The best thing I can say is that you should discuss your aims and needs with the people you live with and see if you can come up with a plan that will allow you to make your lifestyle change. At one time, I used to cook two separate meals in a sitting as my wife was vegetarian and, to my shame, I ate meat but we made it work and quite easily, I should add.

There are many reasons why people choose to become vegan. I would guess (as I have done absolutely no research) that the most common reason is so that the price of their food is not another life. This was certainly my reason and my opinion on this grows stronger with every second that passes. Whatever your reason may be, you will certainly benefit from a less toxic diet. It is my belief that a poor diet is a much larger player in the illnesses that we see today than people are generally led to believe. Since becoming vegan, I have not had a cold, my skin looks vibrant and healthy and I generally feel more healthy.

Meat substitutes are not good substitutes for meat. This is an opinion but I’m willing to bet that many will agree. The texture and taste of meat substitutes like quorn, tofu or seitan will only disappoint if you are expecting it to directly take the place of meat. It doesn’t but it is enjoyable if you accept it for what it is. Remember, you are totally transforming your diet so you have to get used to new tastes that probably won’t light your fire for a while. It does get better and you can enjoy your food. You have to appreciate that the foods we have been previously conditioned to eat are strong in taste, particularly processed foods. They are designed to compliment your taste buds but, in many cases to an extreme level so that when you suddenly go to a plant based diet, many things taste bland. My advice is get creative with seasoning. Experiment.

To a non-vegan reading this, it probably doesn’t sound that appealing. In truth, from a food enjoyment point of view, there is some adjusting to do. For a long time, I ate to survive and I’ve only just got to a point where I now enjoy my food again. Once you have decided to face the realities of the meat and dairy industry and you have decided that it is no longer acceptable to take a life for your food or to be part of the cruelty, you won’t want to go back. It really is an awakening and, even if I never got to the point of enjoying food again, I would be happy just to eat to survive as long as I was not part of this abhorrent activity.

If you feel you are not getting enough of a certain vitamin, take supplements alongside your diet. I believe B12 is a common vitamin that is lacking for many vegans. I take a daily supplement for this but I am led to believe that there are natural vegan foods that can provide this (again, I have been lazy and done no research whatsoever!!!).

A quick blood test at the doctors can give you an indication of whether or not you are deficient in any vitamins. I’m not trying to advise you to ignore getting the right amounts of vitamins but you don’t need to obsess over it. The stress will probably be more harmful than the slight deficiency you are stressing over!

I hope this has given you some good pointers. It is based on my own experiences and opinions so please go ahead and get a wide range of opinions from others to build a more general picture and above all, use common sense, listen to your body and eat sensibly.

Wishing you every success in your new lifestyle. Go VEGAN – because every life matters.

Introducing the Barnsley King of Kale

OK, so you’ve guessed it – I’m not a King at all.
I do live in Barnsley, South Yorkshire (UK), my favourite food is kale and, what do you know, I live a vegan lifestyle.

Chinese kale vegetables isolated on white background
Some Kale (yesterday).

The first 39 years of my existence were spent turning a blind eye to suffering because I clearly wasn’t ready to give up life-long habits to end the suffering of others. This is by no way an excuse but the prospect of being vegan at one time seemed ridiculous. I don’t eat any fruit, I only eat certain vegetables and my favourite foods were all meats. Luckily, I have an aversion / possible allergy to milk so, from a very early age, milk has not been a part of my diet.

My wife had been a vegetarian since her early teens so when we bought our house, I ended up on many occasions cooking two separate meals. In convergence with this dietary influence, for the first time in my life, I became a dog carer (I find the term ‘owner’ slightly oppressive). I began to evolve at a rapid pace, first cutting out meat and eating only fish and then taking the full vegetarian plunge.

When you educate yourself about the horrors of the dairy industry and consider the obvious issues with cross-species milk and what eggs actually are!!!!, it suddenly becomes common sense that, setting aside the suffering caused, cows milk is for COWS. Chicken Eggs belong to CHICKENS.

I am n0w 44 years young and I have been vegan for over a year. To be honest, I don’t even think about it anymore. In the same way that non-vegans would not consider eating sand as part of their diet ‘because it isn’t a food’, that’s how I subconsciously think about meat and dairy products.

There are so many benefits to being vegan and so many different reasons why people decide to become vegan. For me, I have escaped the primitive thinking of the environment that I was born in to and I face the suffering that paid for every rasher of bacon, every sirloin steak and every lamb chop that I ate. There is no reason, no food tasty enough to justify cruelty to animals. They have lives, families, dreams. Maybe they might seem petty and insignificant in comparison to ours but, to them, they are equally important.

I believe that true strength is having the power to destroy but, instead, choosing compassion. Ultimately, I believe that every life is precious, priceless and worth my compassion and respect.

I regret that I wasn’t born into a more compassionate society and that it has taken 40 years to break free from socially accepted cruelty.

You now have a little background about the Barnsley King of Kale (not a real King, remember). I’m sure that in future posts I will elaborate on some of the points in this belated introduction. Oh, and I suffer from bi-polar disorder which is not the topic of this blog but will be apparent in staggered periods of activity / inactivity and most posts will be no longer than this due to my short attention span / low-boredom threshold. Please feel free to comment or introduce yourself. I’m always glad to hear from other vegans and, in particular, vegans from Barnsley.

Welcome To My (Vegan) World, Won’t You Come On In…..

It has been a long time in planning but this is a site I’ve been wanting to create for a long time. Welcome.

My Vegan World is here to entertain, assist and encourage. Through my own experiences, I hope to help others in converting or maintaining a more compassionate and healthy lifestyle. I refer to myself as the Barnsley King of Kale. This tells you where I’m from and what my favourite food is. I will be posting a more in-depth ‘about’ piece in the near future but, as I type, I have a hundred other things I need to do before I can indulge in this blog.

So, in the future, you can expect stories, vegan tips, recipes, reviews and definitely plenty of opinion. Anyone can reply to my posts if you would like to take a discussion further or if you have an alternative opinion. I simply ask that users are as compassionate to each other as they are to the animals that we all love.

It would also be great if you could sign up to my newsletter too. I promise not to bombard your mailboxes except for the occasional update regarding the site or veganism in general.

I shall return shortly……..

Vegan Fools – Help or Hindrance?

This first post was meant to be an introduction. I wanted to tell everyone about who I am and give a little idea as to what I intend this site to be about. Obviously, from the title, VEGANISM is the main theme but there are specifics. I haven’t even started styling the site yet! Unfortunately, this will all have to wait until my next post. Why? This video was sent to me by a friend on Facebook:


Posted by Laura Clery on Sunday, 4 February 2018


I could never be accused of not having a sense of humour. I laugh at anything and, the more controversial, the funnier I find it. I’m a big fan of both Ricky Gervais and Frankie Boyle so that gives you an idea as to the kind of depths to which my sense of humour stoopeth.

However, as much as I found this video amusing, I also found it unhelpful to the plight of all Vegans around the world. Despite a continuing growth in our numbers, we are still a minority group who are fighting a battle with people who have yet to get past the cognitive dissonance that allows them to turn away from the reality of what eating meat entails.

My issue with the above video is that most minority groups, particularly conspiracy theorists, are viewed as socially challenged, tree-huggers, dreamers, outsiders etc. Veganism is not a ‘point of view’. It is a realisation and acting accordingly to that realisation. So when I see a video that is so out of touch and frankly so embarrassingly piss-poor, it feels like it is working against our cause. It is as if they are trying to reach a youthful audience with faux-youth rap performed in only a way that clueless middle aged fools can.

We are better than this. Animals are dying every second so each and every action should count. We have to appeal to the rational mind, not this plastic assumption of ‘youth’. I know in my heart that the intentions of these people is nothing but sincere but they should have really thought about what they wanted to achieve and asked someone neutral to give an opinion as to the quality of what they were doing.

I think that all they have achieved is making Vegans look out of touch and adding further alienation to our plight which is probably the exact opposite effect that I assume they were aiming for.

As a footnote, I couldn’t care less about how people use the names of animals. That’s irrelevant and has very little to do with respect as far as the animal is concerned. Respect is not being cruel and appreciating that animals have lives which are as important to them as ours are to us.

Clearly, the lesson to be learned from this is don’t try to be something you are not because people are not stupid and find ‘fake’ patronising.

A tacky, awful performance with a flawed message.