Living the Farm Sanctuary Life with Gene Baur

Gene Baur
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Gene Baur is a true pioneer. Hailed as “the conscience of the food movement” by Time magazine, Gene is activist, author, undercover investigator and president and co-founder of Farm Sanctuary, a farm animal rescue organization. He’s also one of the coolest vegans out there!


Gene started his career selling veggie hotdogs out of a  VW van at Grateful Dead concerts to fund farm animal rescues (I mean, HELLO? How cool is this guy!), and today he runs one of the nation’s leading farm animal production organizations. Farm Sanctuary has shelters in New York and California providing rescue, refuge and adoption for hundreds of farm animals each year.


Gene has just released his newest book, Living the Farm Sanctuary Life which I absolutely LOVE. With amazing recipes and incredible stories, this book makes an amazing addition to any bookshelf.


 SU: What inspired you to write your book?

GB: People are increasingly aware of the animal cruelty, human health problems and environmental harms associated with animal agriculture, and increasingly looking for better alternatives. I wrote this book to provide people with simple, practical advice for living and eating more healthfully and compassionately. Citizens know a lot about why change is needed, and this book shows how to do it, step by step.


 book_imageSU: How did you take the first steps toward actually sitting down to write it and decide which recipes to include?
GB: I was lucky to co-author this book with Gene Stone, who has written dozens of books. The first step was to sit down with Gene and discuss what we wanted the book to be. We wanted the book to share the message of Farm Sanctuary and to inspire people to live better. And we wanted to provide concrete tools, including vegan recipes to help people transition toward plant based eating. We were very fortunate to enlist Jason Wyrick of The Vegan Taste who contributed recipes and also edited and organized recipes from dozens of other chefs.


 SU: At what point did you know that your idea was going to succeed?

GB: It has been said that there is nothing more powerful than an idea whose time has come, and the timing for Living the Farm Sanctuary Life couldn’t be better. Our broken food system is causing untold misery, and a growing bed of evidence supports the idea that humans should be eating plants instead of animals. This shift is good for people, animals and the earth. The United Nations and even U.S. government advisory committees are now promoting plant based eating. It’s never been better time to be vegan.


 SU: What makes your new book different from other cookbooks out there?

GB: Living the Farm Sanctuary Life includes an amazing range of vegan recipes from top vegan chefs, restaurants and cookbook authors. There is something for everyone from novices to expert cooks. The book also includes beautiful and inspiring pictures of people and animals at Farm Sanctuary and the tenets behind living a healthier, happier and more fulfilling life.


 SU: What motivates you to jump out of bed every morning?

GB: There are so many problems in our world, and I am motivated to do what I can to help address them. I am especially interested encouraging people to make mindful choices, which collectively can have profound impacts. I believe we can change the world when we act with conscience and “vote with our dollars.” Among the most important and profound choices we make every day has to do with how we eat.


 SU: If you could take 2 food itmes to a desert island (that you’re going to be stuck on for a year) what would they be?

GB: I love fruit, like tangerines, nectarines, or clementines, as a refreshing snack on a hot day. Assuming this island is hot, I’d choose one of those, probably clementines. Then, I’d want something substantive and hearty, perhaps quinoa, beans or maybe avocados, and guess I’d choose quinoa because it’s loaded with iron and protein.


 SU: What do you hope to be doing five years from now?

GB: In five years, I hope I’m still doing what I’m doing now, but with even more vegan awareness and vegan foods available. I’d also love to be more involved in actually growing food at Farm Sanctuary. Besides confronting problems in our food system, I hope to play a more integral role in advancing feasible solutions.


 SU: What is your all-time favorite quote?

GB: “There is not enough darkness in the world to put out the light of even one small candle.” – Robert Alden


I urge all of you to get your copy of Living the Farm Sanctuary life – It is an incredible read!

And be sure you sign-up for my One-A-Week Challenge – For the next four weeks I’m sharing one habit a week to integrate into your routine to help you feel healthy and gorgeous! First up – Go meat free!


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