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The Health Science Podcast | Episode 015. | February 16, 2023
015: From Dairy Farmer to Vegan Activist for the Animals with Jackie Norman and Gareth Scurr
015: From Dairy Farmer to Vegan Activist for the Animals with Jackie Norman and Gareth Scurr

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Imagine being on the inside of an industry veiled in secrecy, deceit, and suffering. An industry that most people would be horrified to learn the truth of, yet even when they uncover the atrocities, many choose to ignore the reality of what goes on within the dairy industry.

One person who could no longer deny the truth of the dairy industry is former dairy farmer, Jackie Norman.

With her identity tied to an industry she could no longer be a part of, Jackie began a deep soul searching journey that not only took her to places she never imagined, as fate would have it, she met the love of her life, Gareth Scurr.

A highly accomplished and acclaimed photographer, filmmaker and artist, Gareth supported Jackie’s decision to commit to the vegan lifestyle, but swore it would never be his personal choice.

He loved the taste of meat far too much to ever imagine a life without it… until he learned the horrid truth about the pain and suffering millions of animals are unnecessarily subjected to.

In this episode of the Health Science Podcast, Dr. Frank Sabatino discusses what really goes on in the dairy and meat industries with Jackie and Gareth from an insider’s perspective.

Jackie shares her health challenges, the times she had to hide out from those who didn’t want her revealing what she knew about the dairy industry and how Gareth put his gift as a photographer and filmmaker as the foundation of the visual media for the nonprofit, Vegan FTA.

Gareth reveals how eliminating meat and dairy from his diet had an added benefit of extreme weight loss.

Together, Jackie and Gareth are making a huge impact on the vegan movement.

Episode Highlights

[02:15]             From vegetarian to dairy farmer to vegan activist – Jackie’s journey           

{05:00]             The reality of dairy farming   

[07:30]             When the veil gets lifted… it’s a reality check           

[10:00]             Destroying “bobby” calves                              

[13:00]             Activism hits the road                                      

[18:15]             The frightening side of activism        

[23:30]             The mission and vision of Vegan FTA                        

[27:30]             Vegans around the world collaboration        

[31:45]             Animal justice                        

[35:00]             The loss of a child creates deep empathy     

[39:00]             Vegans in the Limelight         

[41:00]             The future of Vegan FTA                                

About Gareth and Jackie

Gareth Scurr and Jackie Norman are husband and wife, devoted full time to being BIG voices for the animals through the power of media. 

As an acclaimed photographer, filmmaker and artist, Gareth’s film and graphic design work have been the foundation for the global nonprofit, Vegan FTA.  

Jackie is the bestselling author of three books, including ‘Easy & Delicious: Everyday Vegan‘ – a cookbook she and Gareth wrote together which was awarded runner-up in the VegfestUK awards for Favorite Plant Based Book.  

As a former dairy farmer in her adopted country of New Zealand, Jackie’s years of insight and experience give her a unique perspective, which she shares willingly to help lift the veil on the industry among animal advocates and consumers. 

Jackie and Gareth are joint hosts of the Vegan FTA ‘Activist’ podcast and are also qualified Vegan Hospitality Consultants.  

With well over 1,000,000 followers on Facebook, Jackie and Gareth are a voice for the voiceless.

The Vegan FTA vision is a world in which veganism is the moral baseline and organizations like theirs are no longer needed to save and protect animals. They envision a society in which animal cruelty and exploitation are relegated to the past, and the future of all living beings rests in compassionate hands.

About Dr. Frank Sabatino

As a recognized authority on the benefits of a plant-based lifestyle, Dr. Frank Sabatino has cared for and inspired thousands of people for over 40 years. Dr. Sabatino has a PhD in cell biology and neuroendocrinology and has done extensive landmark research on calorie restriction, stress, and aging. He currently is on staff at the TrueNorth Health Foundation in Santa Rosa, CA, and serves as the Director of Health Education at the NHA.

Dr. Sabatino’s passion and life’s work include raising awareness about the benefits of whole-food, plant-exclusive nutrition (without added salt, oil, or sugar), health rejuvenation, stress

About NHA

The National Health Association (NHA), founded in 1948, is a nonprofit organization that promotes the benefits of a plant-based diet. The Association provides educational materials, educational events, and services to thousands of people around the world.

The mission of the National Health Association is to educate and empower individuals to understand that health results from healthful living. The NHA recognizes the integration of all aspects of health: personal, environmental, and social.

The NHA also provides travel experiences around the globe through the NHA Plant-Based Travel and cruise division.

More information:


A one-of-a-kind experience, the annual NHA Conference features top leaders in the plant-based movement. Attendees of the in-person event enjoy 100% no SOS plant-exclusive meals.

To learn more and reserve your spot, visit 


A unique benefit of the NHA Conference is the selection of two medical students who receive a full scholarship to the conference.

Contact Wanda Huberman for more information on how to apply for the scholarship. [email protected]

NHA membership

For a very nominal investment, you can enjoy incredible benefits of the NHA membership.

Members of the NHA enjoy a subscription to the award-winning quarterly health journal, Health Science, access to the “Members Only” section of the NHA Website (which contains all 43 years of back issues of the magazine),  the ability to download for free many classic out of print eBooks on the history of the Natural Hygiene Movement, including Fasting Can Save Your Life and The Greatest Health Discovery, discounts on books, and early notice of the NHA events.

Only $35 a year for basic membership within the United States.

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