Judge John Deed’S Holiday Good Deed: Tofurky Feasts For The Needy

Martin Shaw Dishes Out Veggie Dinners to Birmingham’s Sheltered

For Immediate Release:
21 December 2004

Sean Gifford 020 7357 9229, ext. 226

Birmingham – Many of  Birmingham’s homeless and needy will get a hearty, healthy and humane dinner this holiday season thanks to actor Martin Shaw, star of the hit TV series Judge John Deed. Shaw, whose acting career spans nearly 40 years, has teamed up with People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) to provide Tofurky dinners (delicious soya-based roasts with all the trimmings) for homeless people. The veggie feasts are meant for men and women whose purses may be empty but whose stomachs still need filling, people with problems enough without adding high cholesterol to the list.  The Tofurky giveaway holds extra significance for Shaw, who has a soft heart for animals abused on their way to the table and who has been vegan for many years.

“With 2,000 people going vegetarian every week in Britain, you will doubtless have some visitors who have given up meat”, writes Shaw in his letter to the shelters on PETA’s behalf. “With Tofurky, they can enjoy a delicious main course instead of making a meal out of side dishes. Don’t be surprised if your non-vegetarian guests like it, too!”

The Tofurky dinners will go to Birmingham shelters New Boot, City Mission Hostel, Salvation Army Hostel, St. Anne’s Hostel and Zambesi.

Why should anyone’s feathers get ruffled when people eat turkeys? Birds on factory farms have been bred to grow so quickly that their bones and leg muscles often collapse under the stress of supporting their huge upper bodies. As a result, many are unable to stand or move without pain. More than 35 million turkeys are slaughtered in the UK every year.

Consumption of turkey and other meats and animal products is linked to heart disease, stroke, diabetes, obesity and several cancers. Among the growing number of Britons who will celebrate the holidays without killing birds are Amanda Holden, Sir Ian McKellen, the McCartneys and Joanna Lumley.

For more information and to view PETA’s undercover investigation at a turkey farm, please visit GoVeg.co.uk. PETA’s free Vegetarian Starter Kit full of delicious vegan recipes can be ordered online or by calling 0800 328 9621. Martin Shaw’s letter to the homeless shelters is available upon request.