Vegan foods – hold the stigma – become hot new entrants in sector

Sep 10, 2018

Featuring Jana Zaibak, Next Founder & Founder of Nomz Organic

When Kailey Gilchrist started NONA Vegan in Toronto in 2013, she says the vegan message didn’t really fly during sampling sessions for her pasta sauces. “It was quite challenging at the start. Even at Whole Foods, people didn’t know what vegan was. So I just stopped leading with the vegan part and said, ‘Here’s a great sauce’ … and then tell them after that.”

Now with all eyes on veganism and plant-based alternatives, the vegan message comes first. “If I just say, do you want to try my sauce, customers will say ‘I’m vegan’ and walk by. It’s crazy how much has changed.”

Crazy is a good word for what is happening in the vegan/plant-based food world. A&W’s adoption onto its menu of Beyond Burger, a meat alternative with the taste and mouth-feel of ground beef (and which has been selling out in many parts of Canada), is a telling indicator of just how much consumer interest in plant-based options is growing, whether they’re card-carrying vegans/vegetarians or not.

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