Why I ditched dairy

Christie Ryan won our recent cookbook competition and was happy to share her story with you.

"My son still had that new born smell. He could still rest snugly inside the bed of your arms, and you could stare at his button nose all day & never stop smiling. But at 5 months old I was preparing to go back to work 2 days a week. He was a big boy, and always very greedy when he breastfed so I wanted to make sure he wouldn't go hungry if I had not expressed enough. I gave him a try of formula milk before his night time feed to make sure he was not adverse to the different taste. That night he was violently ill and had a severe reaction to cow's milk. I cannot tell you how horrible it was to see my baby sick. But I was very thankful, also, that people were there to help my son. When I returned to work, I remember feeling very emotional having to crudely express my milk from a manufactured device that felt nothing like the suckle of my baby. There was no comfort and nothing to bond with. Over lunch I complained to my vegan co worker that my son was allergic to milk, and it seems life is going to be difficult without dairy. No cheese, ice cream, or even birthday cake. We spoke at length but towards the end of our conversation she retold me this exact story I will share with you, and my whole world was turned upside down.

How could I, as a mother, justify doing this to another animal like myself? How could I not be accountable for this act of heartless greed? I grieve for this mother, and for the millions of others who are refused their instinct to nurture their young. And I grieve for the newborns who are denied their own mother's love. And every time I make a bed for my now 3 year old son in my arms, I am grateful he reminded me we are humans, not cows."

We will be launching a public awareness campaign later in the year to educate consumers about the cruelty of the dairy industry. Find out more about dairy here.