|International Vegetarian Union (IVU)|
A Spotlight on Vegan Companies and Businesses
throughout the United States and a few beyond - updated May 2006
by M. 'Butterflies' Katz
co-author of Incredibly Delicious; Recipes for a New Paradigm
by Gentle World www.gentleworld.org
Vegan Virtual Shopping Sites in the USA (excl. California):
Action for Animals Store on-line markets about 100 shirts, 220 books (including a very comprehensive choice of vegan cookbooks, displayed with a photo and description), 150 buttons, 150 stickers, other items like license plate frames, rubber stamps, patches, magnets, reusable lunch bags, DVDs, bulk literature for outreach, and some vegan lip balms and all products are vegan.
"We strive to only sell vegan cookbooks, though sometimes we order cookbooks that the supplier calls vegan that we find may contain an occasional recipes calling for either cow's milk or soy milk, or honey, etc." explains the owner. We do strive to buy sweatshop free garments.
The company is run by Action for Animals. AFA is based in Seattle Washington and is a nonprofit vegan outreach and education organization. AFA has existed in its current form since 1999. The founder and director of the group has been vegan for 13 years. The staff of one, the founder and director of AFA, gets paid (annual pay is below poverty level) to run the store and the group. All others involved are volunteers.
Under the name AFA Store, this business began in 2001. Before it was the Vegan Book Project, a separate side project of AFA's Founder & Director, who became vegan after reading some flyers from P.E.T.A. The AFA Store was started as the Vegan Book Project, a resource for vegan books before online shopping and mega-sellers like Amazon became popular. In 2001, The Vegan Book Project decided to expand into other items and then was merged into AFA and became the AFA Store.
In conclusion, the owner adds: "Thank-you for promoting vegan, vegan run, small, non-corporate businesses!"
Cosmo's Vegan Shoppe is an on-line store that sells 100% vegan products.
"We will not sell any item that contains leather, fur, silk, honey, wool or any other animal derived product. We will not sell any product that has been tested on animals." say the company owners, Ken (vegan for 9 years) and Leigh (vegan for 5 years).
All of the staff at Cosmo's Vegan Shoppe are vegan and they have been in business since March 1, 2005. Shop their site for products including supplements, protein powder, sweets, Liz Lovely cookies, chocolates, cosmetics, hair care, body care, skin care, condoms (which are usually not vegan), household products, wallets, bags, lip balm, gluten-free products and much more!
Cosmo's Vegan Shoppe was started by Ken and Leigh Saluzzi. Ken went vegetarian in 1994 after doing research for a college paper regarding the ivory trade in Africa. During this time, the hardcore/punk scene (where some of the bands and record labels promoted the vegan lifestyle) helped raise his animal rights awareness and eventually turned him on to veganism in 1997. Shortly after Ken met Leigh in 2001, the discussion of opening their own vegan store occurred quite often. Ken wanted to provide an easy way for a vegan or a vegetarian to buy cruelty-free products without the hassle of reading ingredients.
Leigh decided to go vegetarian fourteen years ago, at the age of 17. She began writing letters to companies regarding their animal testing practices, and trading in her old leather shoes for man-made ones. She used to think that veganism would be too difficult for her, until she met Ken, who helped her see how easy being vegan could be. She's been vegan for 5 years, and will be for life.
Shoppe is located at 1860 Sandy Plains Rd. Ste 204-208, Marietta, Georgia
Dank Forest online store sells all vegan products.
The business was started in 1999 selling approximately 200 items, mostly apparel and accessories, made from organic hemp. The owner has been vegetarian since 1993 and started the company to better the world.
Dank Forest provides environment friendly products and information for sustainable living. The company focuses its retail division on providing high quality, low cost, organic hemp products that enable customers to live an efficient and harmonious lifestyle. Being socially responsibile is the focal point of the business and that's why sweatshop labor will never be used. Dank Forest was one of the first companies to sell organic hemp merchandise to the retail market in North America.
DANK FOREST - Innovations for
Sustainable Living (location undisclosed)
KindHeartedWomen.com market ONLY vegan products - with the exception of a case of baby rattles (bought by the non-vegan business partner who is trying to make the switch), that were coated with beeswax. They were sold, but they were sold at a discount and CLEARLY marked. This was an error not to be repeated.
The company owner is vegan for approximately 7 years and the company has been in business since 2002. Tracey says: "All of out products are vegan. We have bath, body, hair and baby care, including imported Shea butter and African black soap. We offer a limited amount of essential oils, and other special buys.
"Most of our products are hand made and include: whipped body butters, lotions, hair conditioners, our own Claymazing Powder, to name a few. We also have hemp and cotton diapers and diapering supplies. Soon we will have organic clothing including vegan approved soft shoes for infants and toddlers (as an alternative to leather ones). We will also carry baby slings and vegan play-silks.
"We are two work-at-home moms that started the company to offer a vegan (and often organic) alternative to plastic and paper diapers and commercially available body care products. Purchases help us to stay at home and parent our children." say Tracey McFall of Springfield, MA.
Their web site contains this message: "We're Animal Friendly! Animal ingredients are used not because they are better than vegetable-derived ingredients but because they are cheaper. Slaughterhouses must dispose of bi-products from slaughter of billions of animals every year. The industry has found an easy and profitable solution; rather than pay to dispose of the waste, they sell it to cosmetics manufacturers. We do not use bees wax, honey, animal oil, wool, silk, milk, or any animal or insect derived product ever. PERIOD. Animals are not ours to eat, wear, use, or experiment on."
On their web site they list
some of the reasons why they choose to create their products the cruelty-free
way. The site explains why it is cruel to use silk or bee products or
wool. I found it very interesting and suggest a visit to their web site
One Stop Vegan Shop, sells ONLY vegan products, as you would guess from the name.
This on-line store offers hundreds of personal care products, candles, books, children & baby, cosmetics, footwear, message shirts and products, oral care, paper products, shaving, and more products are continually being added.
"I started learning more and more about animal rights. Thanks to P.E.T.A. and my dad. I became veg and was looking for many vegan products, but had to go to 3 or 4 stores to find everything and became frustrated. That's what prompted me to open my own store." says Julie Setzer, the company owner, and a vegetarian for 3 years.
TheVegetarianSite.com sells no animal products or byproducts of any kind. It is run by David Sudarsky, who has been vegan for 13 years. All the staff are vegan.
They sell hundreds of products including vegan and hemp shoes, belts, accessories, groceries, personal care products, clothing, books, DVDs and videos, juicers, etc.
"I became vegan after being vegetarian for about 5 years. The basis was on ethical/animal rights grounds. As I learned more about the egg and dairy industries, there was simply no reasonable choice other than to become vegan.
"TheVegetarianSite.com was started 6 years ago initially as an informational web site. We soon opened an online store, where we specialized in environmentally friendly vegan products and donated 10% of all sales to nonprofit organizations (we still do). This is a great way to promote high quality vegan products while simultaneously contributing financially to animal rights and vegan organizations." explains David.
He concludes by telling us, "We offer $5 flat-rate shipping, and we carry socially responsible brands.Many companies these days have most of their products manufactured in China under poor working conditions. We carefully screen our suppliers and avoid those companies that are questionable (many shoe manufacturers in particular).
Vegan.com site owned by Erik Marcus, features ONLY vegan cookbooks and every food item the site promotes is vegan. Publisher, Erik Marcus, is a vegan of nearly 20 years. He started the site 7 years ago.
Erik offers regular pod cast with Erik Marcus and various internet feeds. He became vegan because he witnessed slaughterhouse footage during freshman year of college. Erik's video on factory farming will be out in the summer of 2006.
(location undiclosed) Web site: Vegan.com
Vegan Erotica sells ONLY vegan products. The company founder, Eric Waters, has been vegan for 7 years. The staff is all vegan. It has been in business 4 years and is being sold to Camilla Taylor.
Even though I find it hard to believe that there are vegans into sexual bondage, obviously there are! So the animals won't suffer, I've included this site that manufactures hand-crafted vegan bondage gear, whips, belts, harnesses, and other vegan leather (a.k.a. "pleather") items. They also sell vegan condoms, lubricant, and other sex products.
Located at P.O. Box 2762, Salt Lake City, UT. 84110 / Web site: VeganErotica.com
VeganGoods.com was started a couple of years back after the creation of A Different Daisy on-line site.
A Different Daisy offers vegan information, recipes, interviews and more! Basically, Vegan Goods is just the shopping cart extension of that site.
Christi started selling products online in 1998, seeing a need for cruelty-free alternatives The store offers hundreds of vegan and cruelty-free products including cosmetics, body care items, personal care items, products specifically for women, purses, wallets, clothing, books, candles, food and sweets, chocolate, companion animal products, gifts and gift baskets, first aid, vitamins, natural therapeutics, cleaning supplies, bumper stickers and magnets.
The only employee and owner, Christi, has been vegan for 6 years. "My journey to veganism began when I was a young girl, I spent the majority of my time with animals. They were my closest friends. I grew up with so many 'pets' and had such a love for them. It wasn't until I graduated high school that I realized exactly what had to happen in order for meat to become dinner. I guess I knew what happened, but it never actually struck me. It was a huge awakening for me when I realized that I didn't have to eat meat and that I didn't have to eat dairy or eggs. Not long after that, I discovered the horrors of animal testing and factory farming. I was disgusted with myself! Why hadn't I realized this sooner? Now, I live my life as cruelty-free as possible and do my best to promote kindness. I am much happier and healthier because of this lifestyle change." says Christi.
She adds, "I am a dedicated animal rescuer and caregiver. At present I have 19 cats and 4 dogs in my care, all homeless at one time."
Vegan of Light is an on-line cafe press store run by a single mom, Christina Arasmoa, a vegan for 1.2 years and a vegetarian for 18 years.
She became vegan from watching 'The Peaceable Kingdom' by Tribe of Heart. She runs this store to help pay the bills, use some of the money for donations and to help with covering the time involved with vegtampabay.com; a site she designed and maintains.
The store offers a wide variety of shirts with vegan or 'don't eat animals' messages. They are conventional cotton for the most part (there's one organic choice), but they are sweat shop free. The company is just 8 months young, so if you are going to wear clothes, you might as well say something important to humanity and order a shirt or two from her online site.