Mmm… A Pint of Creamy Destruction!

Ice cream, I have found, makes a lot of people happy. Unfortunately, ice cream makes for one very discontent customer: Mother Nature. To assess ice cream’s impact on the environment, you must consider 3 things about its creation. Firstly, that ice cream is made with palm oil, and palm oil production notably contributes to the deforestation of Indonesia and Malaysia, resulting in mass habitat loss for already endangered species. Secondly, that ice cream packaging is rarely local, and instead requires the transportation of tubs across great stretches of land, adding to CO2 emissions. And lastly, that dairy production harms the environment astronomically every day, as one cow produces between 250 and 500 liters of methane gas daily, and requires around 4,781 gallons of water for its daily food needs. One cow. And there are an estimated 9 million dairy cows in the U.S. Now you might be thinking that a bowl of ice cream looks more like the entire logging industry strapped to a nuclear bomb, right? Luckily for us and the planet, there is hope yet! All we must do is take a nice, close look at these 3 facts and create eco-friendly alternatives to each step!

Palm Oil Plantation
Plantations International: Palm Oil plant in Indonesia

To begin, palm oil is what gives ice cream its distinctly ice cream texture; that smooth, creamy pint of goodness is thanks to plants most commonly found in Indonesia and Malaysia. But clearing rainforests in these countries to make way for our beloved palm oil releases greenhouse gases and steals habitats from animals like tigers, orangutans, rhinos and more. World Wildlife Fund offered a wise solution to such dangers by founding the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil in 2004, supplying better choices in palm oil and creating standards that preserve the planet. By abiding by WWF’s regulations, we may take one step closer to eco-friendly ice cream production.

Next, the harmful impact of ice cream packaging can be lessened through local efforts to package pints; the investment in local injection molding machines saves thousands of “food miles” each year that transported packaging demands. Mackie’s of Scotland uses their own molding machine, and can proudly state that their tubs now only travel 200 meters from the molding room, saving the previous 50,000 yearly food miles!

The Killer
The Killer

Finally, the dairy issue. Who knew cows were walking serial killers of the earth? A much safer alternative to the draining production of dairy lies with the ingredients lying around in your kitchen. Ice cream can be made with coconut milk, avocados, bananas, almond milk, cashews, soy milk and many more ingredients you never would have considered in place of the milk from our moon-hopping, earth-destroying friend! The drawback to these resources would be the CO2 emissions from transportation; such an issue may be bypassed by buying local produce whenever possible.

Strawberry ice cream
Strawberry Goodness YUM

Overall, through careful consideration of ice cream’s effect on the planet, we may all reach a point where enjoying a scoop of that creamy deliciousness is no guilt, and all pleasure – for us, and the Earth!

Loving Vincent Review

Now, when I first bought my ticket, I wasn’t entirely too enthusiastic. I mean, I wasn’t jumping up and down. As the opening credits rolled, I was checking Instagram and Twitter. I was tempted to text my mom back.

This all changed within the first 10 minutes of the film.

It starts off a year after Vincent died.  Now, keep in mind that the flashbacks are through the son of a postman, who is asked to deliver a letter to Vincent’s brother. Armand is his name and his initial laid-back attitude is how the movie initially feels. A bit luke-warm, and care-free.

But as the movie progressed, Armand quickly shifts from location to location, attempting to rightfully deliver the letter to somebody. At times, I would be more interested in the oil frames, than the movie, just because of how well done they were. I found myself staring at a man’s beard for longer than I would like to recall, just because of the color in it.

Anyways, Armand settles in a village, ways away from his own town, and starts to learn more about the truth of Vincent’s death. We all know the sad tale of how Vincent passed, but the movie takes a twist on the famous artist’s wound. How did he die? It explores a cover-up of a shooting while incorporating characterization throughout the process. I was rooting for characters and picking my favorites as the movie progressed. I also enjoyed Armand’s caring attitude about Vincent. He was sticking up for Van Gogh, and himself as the movie came to a close. At times I even forgot I was watching different paintings interact. The emotions and plot were the same. The only difference was the clear effort in making the movie.

angry tyra banks GIF

By the end of the movie, the message stayed the same. It was clear that Vincent should be celebrated, not for his mental illness, but for his art. He shouldn’t be analyzed for his passing but celebrated for his work in his present life. Whether his death was unintentional, or self-inflicted, he would still be the same Van Gogh we know today. And as the credits rolled, I admit, I was debating on whether I  should cry or laugh.

martha and snoops potluck dinner party sunglasses GIF by VH1Overall, I would definitely watch this film again. The imagery, the characterization, and the writing were astonishing. For anyone who’s on edge about watching,  do yourself a favor, and watch. You won’t regret it.