Vegan Pro Surfer Tia Blanco Makes a Splash in New peta2 Campaign

Healthy Plant-Based Meals Help Teenager Perform at Her 'Highest Level'

For Immediate Release:
June 3, 2014

Contact:
Moira Colley 202-483-7382

San Clemente, Calif. – Hot off her 17th birthday—and her impressive third-place finish at the International Surfing Association’s World Junior Surfing Championship—pro surfer Tia Blanco is the star of a brand-new ad for peta2, PETA’s youth division, that shows her on her shortboard next to the words “I’m Tia Blanco, and I’m a Vegan” and the explanation “All life deserves to be free. Help save the planet and more than 100 animals every year by going vegan.”

In an exclusive video interview with peta2, Blanco—a lifelong vegetarian—shares what prompted her to go vegan in the last year: “I was inspired by my uncle,” she says. “When he turned vegan, I was just really interested, and I wanted to learn more about it. … [A]nd it was really just eye-opening and disturbing at the same time, and I knew after that I didn’t want to participate in why these animals were suffering anymore.”

Since she went vegan, Blanco says she has never felt better: “I just feel a difference in my recovery levels, my energy levels, and I feel like a better person—I feel that I’m living a healthy and happier lifestyle. And I think it has really impacted my surfing and my performance.”

Going vegan is a great way to reduce the risk of heart disease, cancer, strokes, diabetes, and obesity, and it spares animals immense suffering on factory farms, in slaughterhouses, and on the decks of fishing boats. Vegan meals are also “green,” as raising animals for food is responsible for an enormous amount of water pollution, land degradation, and greenhouse-gas emissions.

That’s why, in part, so many top athletes and other celebrities—including Rocsi Diaz, Jake Shields, Renee Olstead, Rich Roll, Tia Mowry, Alicia Silverstone, and Daniella Monet—have teamed up with peta2 to promote healthy and humane meat-free meals.

Broadcast-quality video footage of Blanco’s interview can be downloaded here. For more information, please visit peta2.com.

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“Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights?” READ MORE

— Ingrid E. Newkirk, PETA President and co-author of Animalkind