Supporting Small Businesses

Its seems like an age away since Veganuary ended and many people will be (hopefully) starting the third month of their vegan journey, anxiously looking for advice on how to stay on track. Right now, I’m desperately trying to find something positive to talk about during this never-ending global pandemic (and I may nor may not have had this post stored up ready to go when I got round to completing it.)

We have been very lucky, especially in the last 18 months to have an abundance of options launching in many high street chains and restaurants, with almost a quarter of food launches in 2019 being vegan products. However, we must not forget many of the longstanding vegan businesses that have been here since before your Greggs vegan sausage roll and steak bake. But gear up, because they need us now more than ever! I’ve seen small businesses struggling with lack of customers and many closing down since we’ve been ‘advised’ to begin social distancing and reduce our time outdoors.

I am constantly searching for ways to improve my shopping habits, be it reducing plastic use or buying second hand clothes and who doesn’t love a good charity shop rummage. Don’t get me wrong, it is incredible to see KFC launching a vegan burger; New Look registering a whole range of accessories with the Vegan Trademark and Colgate launching a vegan toothpaste, but we shouldn’t be sleeping on the OG vegan companies. Now is the time to get to the point of my blog post and recommend some of my favourite small businesses, many of which are owned by some lovely vegans.

The Punky Bunny
I have been buying from Emma for a number of years now. Her items are perfect for gifts, from keychain and jewellery to badges and cards, there is a whole array of items that would be perfect gifts for any vegan. She also donates 10% of her profits to an animal sanctuary each month, so an even better reason to support her business.

(via @ThePunkyBunny)

Ellis Woolley
Ellis’s products feature hand drawn designs on key rings, cards, stickers, mugs and decor. I have a couple of the mugs myself, with a Mad Hatter themed piece to add to my ever growing Alice in Wonderland collection! All of her items are super affordable and make perfect presents. Ellis has said she will keep her shop going for as long as the Post Office remains open.

(via @EllisJade_)

Wear Your Voice
Wear Your Voice have been at a number of vegan events and festivals that I’ve visited. The brand was created by vegan artist Angela Tubb in 2014 and there are so many designs to choose from. Much of the clothing is unique and you can even ask for a custom made order of your own. As of this January, Wear Your Voice are donating a percentage of their profits to vegan food banks.

Dirty Kitch
The lovely Danielle and Adam run a fully vegan restaurant serving street and soul food at Fargo Village in Coventry. Due to the ongoing situation, they have opted for a delivery only service where you can order food via Deliveroo. Their food is handmade, affordable and best of all, absolutely delicious. I 100% recommend their fried chick’n, vegan or not you will love it. Please, please support their small family business if you can, they truly deserve it!

The Garden Shed Cafe
I’ve lost count the amount of times I’ve been to this wonderful place. A 100% vegan and family run business that’s affordable and all of the food is delicious. Their cheese toasties will make you fall in love with vegan cheese and the ladies that run the cafe are welcoming and friendly. They have recently announced they are offering a takeaway only service to allow them to continue to operate. If you’re nearby, definitely give it a chance and support a local small business.

Eden Perfumes
If you’re a vegan and a lover of perfumes and haven’t heard of Eden, have you been living under a rock!? This family owned business creates vegan and cruelty free alternatives to popular perfumes such as Paco Rabanne, Marc Jacobs and Emporio Armani, along with some classic scents of their own. I used to wear Olympea perfume and no.491 is an exact and noticeably cheaper alternative to the orginal. There is also the option to search for your current non-vegan perfume and the site will suggest a substitute for you.

Until next time,
Neneh x

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