To the editor: 

With crippling storms hitting our country in past months, we look forward to the first day of spring, balmy weather, and a superb second chance to actualize those New Year's resolutions favoring more exercise and healthy eating.

The shift toward healthy foods is everywhere. Popular fast-food chains like Chipotle, Starbucks, Subway, Taco Bell and Wendy's all offer plant-based meal options. Food websites tout vegan recipes. Global Meat News reports that nearly half of consumers are reducing meat intake. 

The financial community is betting on innovative plant food start-ups, like Beyond Meat, or Impossible Foods. According to Gallup, sales of plant foods grew 8.1 percent in 2017 and exceeded $3.1 billion last year. Britain's prestigious The Economist declared 2019 the “Year of the Vegan.”

The reasons are ample. The World Health Organization has linked consumption of processed meats with elevated risk of cancer. The U.S. Dietary Guidelines recommend reduced meat consumption. The media keep exposing factory farm atrocities. And animal agriculture is chief culprit in climate change.

Every one of us can celebrate spring by checking out the rich collection of plant-based food options in our supermarket's frozen food, dairy, and produce sections. An internet search on vegan foods offers ample recipes.

Whitford Quincet

West Plains

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