Liz Ross has made it her mission to help people of Caribbean heritage embrace vegan living. She joins us on the podcast to discuss how Rethink Your Food, the nonprofit she founded, is helping her reach Caribbean people, in the islands and beyond, to promote the benefits of a plant-based food system. Liz discusses how she hopes to engage, not only the local population, but everyone in the diaspora with the Vegan Caribbean Kickstart initiative through ready-made meal plans and tips to help participants stay on track. Liz also explores why the Caribbean region is ready for a discussion about the impact of our food system, and touches on issues in the realm of food justice and celebrating her Caribbean plant-based food culture.
*We are thrilled to expand the accessibility of our podcast by offering written transcripts of the interviews! Click here to read Jasmin’s interview with Liz Ross.*
Liz Ross is a recipe developer and the Founder and Executive Director of Rethink Your Food, a nonprofit organization that focuses on diet-change initiatives, primarily among Caribbean people in the Caribbean region and the diaspora, via public events, campaigns, and menu-consulting services. Liz was born and raised in Trinidad and Tobago, where her family owns 300 acres of agricultural land within a rainforest in Tobago where they grow cacao, fruit, and other crops. She is a resident of the U.S. and Trinidad and Tobago, and her background in sustainable food systems and plant-based culinary arts sets the foundation for her work at Rethink Your Food. Liz was the first food justice advocate to appear on a national Caribbean talk show on CNC3 TV to discuss the ethics of leaving animal products off one’s plate.
“We have the responsibility, as the ancestors of future generations, to make the world a better place.” — Liz Ross
Highlights for Episode 670:
- How the global food system is impacting the lives of people in the Caribbean
- The Vegan Caribbean Kickstart program and how it enables people to make better food choices and help build a movement
- Some of the recipes that Liz developed for the kickstart program
- How Liz counters the argument that letting go of ancestral foods is letting go of culture
- Religious influences on Caribbean diets and how Liz accounts for that in Rethink Your Food’s messaging
- The connection between Rastafarian Ital and vegan diets
- Why people are open to Liz’s strong environmental and animal rights messages and how she delivers them for maximum effect without alienating various groups
- How the Better Menu Initiative improves people’s diets by teaching them how to incorporate healthy plant-based menu items
- The Caribbean Veg Summit and how Liz anticipates the conference will allow people in the food and catering sector to network and share ideas
- How people can support Liz and Rethink Your Food’s efforts
- Liz’s experience at the UC Santa Cruz Center for Agroecology and Sustainable Food Systems
- Why animal rights activists who bring world hunger into their messaging without fully understanding the issues are damaging the cause
- Looking for Vegan Food? HappyCow Says These 10 Cities are the Best
- The Meat Industry Is Still Destroying the Amazon for Soy, Study Finds
- The Vegan Butchers
- Episode 355: Kale and Aubry Walch of The Herbivorous Butcher, and Activist Kelly Lehman
- Grass Fed and Vegan w/ Rob Nipe and Nora Rubel
Connect with Liz Ross:
- Rethink Your Food Website
- Rethink Your Food on Instagram
- Rethink Your Food on Facebook
- Lisa Ross on LinkedIn
Connect with Our Hen House:
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This episode is brought to you in part through the generosity of A Well-Fed World. A Well-Fed World provides the means for change by empowering individuals, social justice organizations, and political decision makers to embrace the benefits of plant-based foods and farming. Learn more at awfw.org.