Interview: America for Animals on the Humane Eating Project App

The app helps people locate vegan, vegetarian or at least humane restaurants

Jun 7, 2014 20:35 GMT  ·  By  · 
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Back in May, I introduced you to a cool app released by non-profit organization America for Animals that promised to make it a whole lot easier for people to make ethical decisions when eating out.

To put it in a nutshell, the Humane Eating Project app helps people locate vegan, vegetarian, or at least humane restaurants in their proximity.

Thanks to it, folks can make sure that, simply by choosing to enjoy a quite meal in town, they do not support a meat and dairy industry that cares too little about the wellbeing of animals and too much about profit.

We've had the chance to have a chat with the people at America for Animals, and have even been so bold as to ask them a few questions.

Without further ado, here is what we wanted to know and what they had to say:

Softpedia: For starters, could you tell our readers a few things about what humane eating is all about? Is it possible to eat in a humane manner and still enjoy the occasional hamburger, or are we supposed to stick to carrots and broccoli for the rest of our lives?

America for Animals: Yes, Humane Eating is eating food that is vegan, vegetarian or humanely-raised. The idea is that you can eat the foods you want but consider animal’s well being at the same time. If you are a Humane Eater you are concerned about how animals are treated in our factory farm food system. You are making a choice to stop creating demand for cruel food.

Softpedia: How did the Humane Eating Project got started? What gave you the idea to design an app that people could use to find restaurants that embrace and promote humane eating?

America for Animals: The idea came from the fact that it was not easy for consumers to do the right thing – it wasn’t easy to find restaurants serving humanely-raised options. There is no reason it shouldn’t be easy, so we wanted to solve that problem.

It’s easier to find vegan/vegetarian restaurants and those are obviously even more humane so we include those as well. Many people that care about animals are also reducing their meat/dairy and egg consumption as well and mix between vegan, vegetarian and humanely-raised.

Softpedia: The Humane Eating Project app can be downloaded for free. You've invested quite a lot of time and effort in creating it, so how come you don't want to profit from it? Have you at least considered the possibility to put a price tag on it and, if not, why?

America for Animals: The only “profit” we want is the knowledge that people are making humane decisions that spare animals from lives of cruelty. It will always be free so we can get the most people to use it.

Softpedia: How have people responded to the app since it was launched until present day? Have you received any complaints from folks who have had trouble using it?

America for Animals: The response has been fantastic. We had hundreds of installs in the first few days after launch. It’s not bug free, we have a 1.1 already waiting for Apple to approve.

Softpedia: Is the Humane Eating Project app intended for the younger generation alone, or does is appeal to those who have passed their prime as well?

America for Animals: Our audience is anyone with a smartphone. Right now, we only have an iOS version. We have plans for releasing a version for Android and mobile web to pick up all devices, as well as a traditional web app.

Softpedia: Some animal rights activists have been known to criticize, sometimes even bully, people who don't care all that much where their sausages come from and who would never give a vegan diet a try. Have you ever done so, or do you think it's best to just inform folks and let them make their own decisions?

America for Animals: We appreciate the passion of animal rights activists. The cruelty that animals face in the factory farming system can be so horrific that it is incomprehensible that it exists in our society today.

That being said, our focus has always been on the positive – making it easy and fun for people to do the right thing and also educating people at the same time. The ‘Learn’ feature of the app is designed to educate people more on the issues.

Softpedia: Do you have any big plans for the future that you might want to share with us?

America for Animals: We’re working on the aforementioned different versions of the app (Android, Mobile Web, Web). We’re making it more social and we’re working on a petition engine to give people a way to encourage restaurants to go humane. Restaurants will have actionable data with which to make the choice to offer more humane options.

If this interview happened to spark your interest in the Humane Eating Project app, be sure to also check out the video below to learn more about it.

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