In an effort to promote the importance of eating plant-based food at least once a week, the Humane Society International (HIS) held a Green Monday cooking workshop in Philippi hall at Browns Farm, on Monday April 11.
The initiative was aimed at highlighting the benefits of eating plant-based meals and hoped to encourage people to eat and live more healthily.
Leozette Roode, social media and community relations co-ordinator for Farm Animals Africa, said the workshop was aimed at equipping families with the knowledge and skills to cook more wholesome, healthy and delicious food without spending too much money.
Ms Roode told Vukani that eating healthy food plays a pivotal role in the well-being of the environment, people and animals.
“In reality, plant-based meals can be more affordable, easier to prepare and more delicious than conventional animal-based foods,” she said.
Four chefs demonstrated to the group of people who attended the workshop how to prepare plant-based meals, with all the products having been sourced from the community.
“Studies have found that those who eat a plant -based diet tend to have a lower risk of obesity, heart disease, type 2 diabetes and cancer,” Ms Roode said.
The Green Monday initiative, she added, was aimed at creating a marketplace that provides delicious food, promotes better policies for animal welfare and lessens the environmental footprint.
She said more than one billion land animals were raised for food in 2013, in South Africa alone and more than 95 percent of egg-laying hens and more than 50 percent of pregnant sow (female pigs) spend their lives in cages.
“By 2023, it is projected that 33 percent of the world population will live in areas of absolute water scarcity, including South Africa,” she said.
Cristina Khaba of Abalimi Bezekhaya, urged women to wake up and start their own food gardens, with the aim of making a living through these gardens.
Ms Khaba said in years gone by, people were dependent on farms and gardens for sustenance and appealed to the people revive that culture of living off the land.
“I’m 68 years old and I left school at Grade 2, but I drive my own car and have a big house, and I have managed to do that through working in the garden,” she said.
She added that women should stop depending on their husbands to do things for them; that they need to craft their own future.
“I dont just work for Abalimi Bezekhaya. I also have my own food garden on the side,” she concluded.
Provincial chairperson of South African Civic Organisation (SANCO), Sam Ndzunga expressed his gratitude to the Humane Society International for sharing their valuable skills and knowledge about cooking healthy meals.
“We hope this would be the start of great things to come for our people and we hope you can conduct more cooking workshops,” he said.