Vegan Leather Made From Palm Leaves Is a Cruelty-Free Alternative to Cow Hide – LIVEKINDLY

Dutch designer Tjeerd Veenhoven makes uniquely textured vegan leather rugs with palm leaves.

Veenhoven has worked on rug design for eight years, starting his palm leaf research by asking an India-based friend to send him leaves to research. Initially, he felt the material was “super brittle and not very useful,” but after it was treated “with a special material of glycerin and water, and some other materials” it became soft, Veenhoven said to Dezeen.

The Dutch designer’s vegan palm leather rug range is made from thin strips of palm leaf material, created in a Dominican Republic-based factory. The strips are placed “end to end by hand” and “attached to a woven base,” Dezeen reported.

The automotive industry has expressed interest in using the vegan leather alternative in car interiors. “We have to focus more on plant-based systems and we have to encourage them more because they are essential to our livelihoods,” Veenhoven said.

The Growing Vegan Leather Industry

Around the world, brands are taking a shine to vegan leather and vegan leather products.

Earlier this month, Harper Crossbody bags by K. Carroll Accessories, a vegan handbag brand, were placed on Oprah Winfrey’s “Oprah’s Favorite Things 2018” list. In September, Nasty Gal added vegan leather jackets to its line – the first time a vegan leather piece was available in sizes up to 18. This past summer, James&Co, a cruelty-free fashion brand, revealed it was working on a vegan leather jacket made from pineapple skins. The already 100-percent vegan, cruelty-free, and PETA-approved brand launched the line to become more sustainable.

And Galina Mihaleva, a Bulgarian-born fashion designer, is using kombucha to make vegan leather. Mihaleva made a temporary leather-making lab at the School of Art at Arizona State University, where she’s working as a visiting professor. 

“This is an old thing,” said Mihaleva, referring to the process. “Two thousand to 3,000 years ago, the Chinese were doing (this) without knowing they were making biotextiles.”

Other companies are also experimenting with mushroom leather, apple leather, and coconut water leather.

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Vegan Leather Made From Palm Leaves Is a Cruelty-Free Alternative to Cow Hide

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Vegan Leather Made From Palm Leaves Is a Cruelty-Free Alternative to Cow Hide


A vegan leather palm leaf material is a cruelty-free alternative to traditional leather. The palm leather rugs were designed by Tjeerd Veenhoven.


Abbie Stutzer

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Highland Heroes: Friends help save cow from frozen pond – WCAX

MIDDLESEX, Vt. (WCAX) It started as a ski adventure for two friends, but it ended with something they will never forget.

About two weeks ago, Ryan Horan and Stephen Davidson got their skis and headed out on a Middlesex ski excursion. While they were out, they saw some Highland cattle, but looking at the property they noticed something was off.

Now, they are being celebrated for rescuing a cow that preferred to be away from the herd. It could be that independence and cranky attitude that got Ginger stuck in freezing water.

“He’s like, ‘Ah, hey check it out. They have four big Highland beef cows, they are pretty friendly, they’ll probably pop out and say hi to us,'” Horan recalled saying.

While admiring the cattle up close, Horan and Davidson saw one in the distance that looked stuck in the snow. When they got close, they saw Ginger stuck in a pond.

“It was certainly swimming. We saw it splashing about,” Horan said.

Not seeing any neighbors, they got on their phones and called for help. Knowing help might take some time, the two friends found ropes, shovels and an ice pick and began to help the animal.

One of the first people to arrive and help with the rescue was Middlesex Asst. Fire Chief Jeff Koonz.

“These guys were kind of digging a kind of a ramp for her to get up. She would move up a little bit, and then stop she was out of breath,” Koonz said.

Thirty minutes later, she was able to walk herself out of the pond. She was seen by a large animal veterinarian, who said she was healthy.

As for the “Highland Heroes,” this lifesaving mission was something they did without thinking about.

“When you put yourself in that situation, and you see an animal that size just floundering, literally, Ryan and I both immediately went into saving mode. We didn’t care what it was going to take,” Davidson said.

“And now we have this Ginger lifelong friend, so she definitely recognizes us now, so it was pretty cool,” Horan said.

The owners of the farm weren’t home at the time this happened but are thankful to the two skiers.

Officials say if you see something like this, the first thing you should do is call the police or fire department. They say if you decide to help, make sure your safety is the priority.

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Confined cow/calf operations – The Sabetha Herald Inc.

The topic of confined cow/calf operations seems to be getting a lot more interest lately. There have been some articles in the farm press highlighting some producers around Kansas who are giving this a try. The main reasons are lack of pasture, lack of expansion opportunities and weather!

Next week, I will be visiting some of these operations to interview them and take some virtual tours to share at the Beef Issues Group Meeting later in the month. I’m teaming up with Will Boyer, our water quality specialist, to discuss these operations, and he has a drone that we can get some cool overhead shots. This should be fun.

If you’d like to see what we come up with, join us for the Beef Issues Group Meeting to be held at 7 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 28, at the Glacial Hills Business Resource Center, 913 Dakota in Sabetha.

So let me tell you just a few things about confined raising cows with their calves. Cows require between 125 and 700 square feet of pen space. Smaller cows weighing 1,000 to 1,200 pounds can get by with 125 square feet in dry conditions and 250 square feet during wet conditions. Keeping pairs together requires more pen space. Start with a minimum of 400 square feet per pair in lots that are dry, and add space as calves grow.

If using dry lots, portable bunks can be added to provide enough space. Shade has to be provided to minimize heat stress. Plan on 20 to 25 square feet of shade per head. Place the shade in the middle of the pen for continuous protection throughout the day.

Regardless of feeder or bunk type, each cow needs 24 to 30 inches of bunk space. Horned cattle need even more. Fences should be sturdy enough to withstand a mature cow rubbing and reaching under the fence for grass.

Regardless of facilities, water is the main concern, because it is the number one nutrient for cattle. Each cow consumes 15 to 20 gallons per day. You must be able to provide a continuous supply of water for the number of animals in the pen. During the summer, water consumption usually peaks in early afternoon.

Cattle should be sorted into uniform groups by weight, size, age or body condition. Age is important so the bossy older cows won’t intimidate younger cows. Sorting by body condition score enables you to offer different diets based on the goal of increasing, decreasing or maintaining body condition. Sorting increases the efficiency of the operation.

Feeding programs can be limit fed, or full fed. I’m excited to learn more about confined cow/calf operations and how they are working. I will be visiting three different operations that are using Hoop buildings and outside lots. Stay tuned!

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Cows get own Tinder-style app 'Tudder' for breeding in the UK – The Straits Times

LONDON (WASHINGTON POST) – Cows and bulls searching for “moo love” now have a mobile app to help their breeders.

British farming start-up Hectare introduced a Tinder-style app, called Tudder, that lets farmers find breeding matches by viewing pictures of cattle with details of their age, location and owner.

Users hear a mooing sound as they swipe – right to show they’re interested or left to reject possible matches.

Hectare says it “seeks to unite sheepish farm animals with their soulmates”.

Selling animals using social media can speed up a process that often involves transporting animals long distances for breeding.

“Tudder is a new swipe-led matchmaking app, helping farm animals across the UK find breeding partners in the quest for moo love,” according to its Apple app store description.

Farmers that swipe right on an image of a particular cow – or group of cows – are directed to Hectare’s livestock-buying website, with a chance to contact the owner or make an offer. The listing website includes information on the animal’s character and any health issues.

Profile descriptions range from “nice big strong sorts make nice suckler cows” to “quiet well grown young bull ready to work”. Farmers can also restrict their online search by whether the animal is organic, pedigree or on a farm where tuberculosis has been detected.

Mr Marcus Lampard, a farmer in Carmarthenshire in south-west Wales, has one pedigree beef shorthorn breeding bull listed on the app and says it is a lot easier to sell livestock online.

“Going to market is a nuisance,” he said by telephone. “If I go to an open market with a bull, and then maybe bring it back, it shuts everything down on the farm for at least two weeks.”

Mr Lampard, 76, said his daughter lists the cows online for him. “At my age, we think we’re quite techy, but our grandchildren think we’re hopeless,” he said.

Hectare raised over £3 million (S$5.3 million) from investors including government programmes, author Richard Koch and tennis player Andy Murray, according to its website.

The company didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment after the app was described in the Sunday Times.

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Lead, pesticides found in cow milk, fodder – The Daily Star

— Harmful elements found in Cow fodders, milk, packaged milk and curd

— Study conducted on samples from 27 upazilas in 4 dists

— Cow milk samples contaminated with microbiological impurities, pesticides, lead, tetracycline

A government-run food testing laboratory has found presence of lead, pesticides, and several other harmful chemicals in the samples it took of cow fodder and dairy products from different parts of the country.

The National Food Safety Laboratory (NFSL) revealed its survey results at a programme at the Public Health Institute auditorium in Dhaka today.

The survey was conducted on samples of cow fodder, cow milk, packaged milk and curd, collected from 27 upazilas under four districts including Dhaka.

Cow fodder

The cow fodder samples were found to be contaminated with different harmful chemicals, such as pesticides, lead, chromium, tetracycline, enrofloxacin, ciprocin, and aflatoxin, the survey revealed.

Cow milk

In case of cow’s milk, 96 samples collected directly from dairy farms were tested under the survey and were found to be contaminated with pesticides (9% samples), lead (15% samples), tetracycline (13% samples), all above permitted levels, while microbiological impurities were found in 96% of the samples.

Packaged milk

In the 31 samples of all brands of packaged milk in the market, both imported and locally produced, 30% of the samples contained tetracycline and one contained lead above permitted levels while 66-80% of the samples were contaminated with microbiological impurities.


Besides, microbiological impurities were found in 51% of curd samples collected from sweets shops of different brands while one sample contained lead above permitted level.

Director General of the Directorate General of Health Services (DGHS) Professor Dr Abul Kalam Azad moderated the programme while Professor Dr Shahnila Ferdousi, technical manager and head of NFSL revealed the survey results.

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Cow and her newborn calf rescued after being trapped by flood – WTHR

SEYMOUR, Ind. (WTHR) – Heavy rain and flooding led to a daring water rescue of a mother cow and her calf Thursday in Seymour.

The mother, Loni, went out to pasture earlier this week and gave birth, but the area quickly flooded two days later.

Michael Sciano and his son Gus discovered the cows trapped when they came home Thursday afternoon.

“The water was up really high and we found a cow and a calf, her newborn calf, stuck out there on the last dry spot,” said Michael.

The two used a plastic snow sled and waded out about 100 yards to get to the cows.

“The water was coming up really fast so we knew the window was closing,” said Michael.

“When we finally got out there, it was super cold. Your legs wouldn’t move and it was really deep,” said Gus.

After about 45 minutes, they were able to rescue the pair of cows. They needed to dry off under a heat lamp, but are doing alright.

The family named the calf ‘Noah’ after his flooding ordeal.

“We felt pretty good at the end. We felt like we had accomplished something and came in and took really hot showers,” Michael said.

The Sciano family raises a dozen goats and more than 30 miniature Hereford cows in a labor of love that is more of a hobby than a business.

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Democrat's Green New Deal Wants to Eliminate "Farting Cows" – Drovers Magazine

A proposed set of legislative goals released by a pair of Democratic freshmen members of Congress mentions getting fewer emissions from “farting cows,” but they want to work with farmers, too. The Green New Deal was released on Feb. 7 by Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) and Sen. Ed Markey (D-Mass.) and aims to eliminate greenhouse gas emission while revamping the U.S. economy.

The Green New Deal has been drawing some attention because it would drastically change how many facets of the economy operate in an effort to address climate change. Components of the Green New Deal – that tries to fashion itself similar to President Franklin Roosevelt’s New Deal – focuses on utilizing renewable energy, cutting fossil fuels, overhauling health care and addressing the wealth divide.

The Green New Deal also contains mention of “working collaboratively with farmers and ranchers in the United States to remove pollution and greenhouse gas emissions from the agricultural sector as much as is technologically feasible.”

The initiative aims to support family farmers, invest in sustainable agriculture practices to increase soil health and building a sustainable food system that ensures access to healthy food.

While the legislation doesn’t have much more in details about the role agriculture will play in this effort, a FAQ sheet released with the Green New Deal does paint a different picture.

In a section of the FAQ sheet asking about the difference between the goal of going “100% clean and renewable” versus “100% renewable” there is a call out about methane emissions in cattle.

“We set a goal to get to net-zero, rather than zero emissions, in 10 years because we aren’t sure that we’ll be able to fully get rid of farting cows and airplanes that fast, but we think we can ramp up renewable manufacturing and power production, retrofit every building in America, build the smart grid, overhaul transportation and agriculture, plant lots of trees and restore our ecosystem to get to net-zero,” the FAQ sheet reads.

Voices From Agriculture

The mention of “farting cows” drew concerns from groups representing agriculture and farmers on social media.

The National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA) has been working to address sustainability through efforts like the Global Roundtable for Sustainable Beef (GRSB). Also, NCBA recently released a Cost/Benefit Principles that serves as a guide for decision-making on various policy proposals regarding climate change.

“Despite all the progress we’ve made on the environmental front in recent decades, some policymakers still seem to think targeting U.S. beef producers and consumers will make a huge impact on global emissions,” says Colin Woodall, NCBA senior vice president of government affairs. “That’s why we drafted our Principles – to give the folks who are proposing new public policies the opportunity to outline the specific costs and estimated benefits of their proposals.”

Research and Statistics Shows Improvement on “Farting Cows”

While much of what is suggested for agriculture is already being handled through programs funded in the farm bill, the mention of “farting cows” shows a divide between rural and urban America.

According to data from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), direct greenhouse gas emissions that come from cattle and their manure represents 2% of U.S. greenhouse gas emissions, or less than 0.4% of global emissions.

Research by Virginia Tech and USDA-ARS determined that if all livestock were eliminated from production agriculture it would only reduce U.S. greenhouse gas emissions by 2.6% or 0.36% globally. However, the shift would cause changes in dietary needs as people would not be able to receive enough of several different essential dietary nutrients without animal proteins. There would be deficiencies in calcium, vitamins A and B12 and some important fatty acids. Ultimately, resulting in higher caloric diets.

“A take-home message from the study was that we need to expand the way we think about food production to account for the complex consequences of changing any individual piece within the wider food system,” says Robin R. White, a professor of Animal and Poultry Science at Virginia Tech.

The announcement of the Green New Deal is something that Sara Place, NCBA’s senior director of sustainable beef production research, hopes will serve as starting off point for a conversation between the politicians supporting it and livestock producers.

“I think it highlights the large divide between people that are interacting with the environment and growing food every day, and those that are concerned about environmental issues, but ignorant,” Place says.

The U.S. has become one of the most efficient producers of both beef and dairy in the world during the past few decades, helping curtail the amount of emissions.

Since 1977, the U.S. beef cattle herd has decreased by 33% and the same amount of beef is being produced. A Journal of Animal Science study by Dr. Jude Capper showed that comparing 1977 versus 2007 to produce 1 kg of beef it took 69.9% of the animals, 81.4% of feedstuffs, 87.9% of the water, and only 67.0% of the land required. Modern beef systems produce 81.9% of the manure, 82.3% CH4, and 88.0% N2O per billion kilograms of beef compared with production systems in 1977.

Dairy has seen wide improvements as well. A study published in the Journal of Animal Science (Capper et al., 2009) showed that modern dairy production has become much more efficient. Comparing 1944 versus 2007 it takes 21% fewer cows, 35% less water and 10% less land produce 1 billion kg of milk. All while emitting 37% less of a carbon footprint. Other greenhouse gas impacts included a reduction of 24% for manure, 43% for CH4, and 56% for N2O per billion kg of milk compared with equivalent milk from historical dairying.

Even with these gains in recent history to curtail greenhouse gas emissions in beef and dairy production there still appears to be a need to share that information with political leaders.

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Georgia man accidentally shoots, kills son-in-law after bullet flies through cow – Atlanta Journal Constitution

A Cherokee County man was accidentally shot and killed by his father-in-law after a bullet passed through a cow’s head and struck him, officials said.

The men, both of Waleska, were trying to euthanize the cow that had just given birth and suffered a severe injury Tuesday morning, Cherokee County sheriff’s spokesman Jay Baker told

Herbert Jordan, 74, was trying to kill the cow by shooting it, Baker said. But when he fired the shot, the bullet passed through the cow and struck 59-year-old Jackson Garland, his son-in-law.

Garland was pronounced dead at the scene. 

The shooting appears to be accidental but remains under investigation, Baker said. No charges have been filed.

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'Never turn your back on a cow after calving' –

Some of the key areas of focus during these
inspections should consider: whether or not there is a plan in
place to minimise the risk of attack from a cow when handling a
new-born calf; Is there an adequate physical barrier established
between the farmer and the freshly calved cow when treating and
handling calves?; and are facilities and procedures adequate for
loading and unloading animals?

Good handling facilities, and
holding-areas where cows can be monitored remotely are important
and can help reduce farmer fatigue. Well prepared calving units
with clean bedding, calving gates and the necessary equipment
will ensure safety and reduce stress both on farmers and on the

With much of calving happening during short and often
dull days, or at night, farmers are encouraged to have plenty of
well-positioned lights in calving units and around the farm yard as
this will greatly improve visibility and safety.

The maternal instinct of the cow kicks in some hours before calving and may
last for sever al days after wards.

Knowing an animal ’s temperament is an advantage, but it is important to remember that any
cow can attack or kick at any stage, so extreme care should be taken when handling all cows at calving as a so called quiet cow can
become dangerous at calving time.

Never turn your back on a cow
after calving, and having a good calving gate and locking
barrier is essential when assisting a cow at calving or for putting a calf sucking to avoid a kick from a cow.

When managing any
newborn calf, naval dipping, tagging , treatment, or so on,
it is absolutely critical that there is an adequate and strong
physical barrier between the farmer and the cow .

The risk of
attack is highest when treating the calf, as it may ball, alerting the cow whose natural protective instinct will be to

Also, be very careful when having dogs around calving
pens, as this can also trigger cows to attack.

The vast majority
of livestock attacks and fatalities happen in this way, and
farmers can prevent further serious injury or deaths by
ensuring that they have a strong physical barrier in place.

anyone thinking of converting a shed into a calving house or
constructing a new calving shed, it is a good idea to go and see
a few calving sheds and pens on other farms in order to get ideas,
and talk to farmers to get their views on how their set up is
working ; Is there any change or modification they would

To summarise: ensure that your own safe ty and the safety of others working on your farm is the top priority during the
busy calving period. Take some time to plan ahead and, hope fully
, this will save you a lot of time in the longer term

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