Whether it is for health, environmental or ethical reasons, the number of South African vegans is doubling every two years. If you are currently vegan or are open to supporting either the vegan or plant-based movements, we have put together a list of some of our city’s ethically-minded businesses. Regardless of whether it is food, fashion or wine you’re after, we’ve got you covered.
Corkage does fashion a little differently. After hearing about the ‘cause no harm’ philosophy, they are creating a new generation of truly ethically-produced products that are challenging the idea that beautiful fashion may come at the expense of our animals and natural world. Instead, Corkage supports the concept of unity: both with the human beings who handcraft and wear their products and with the environment, which stands as the source and inspiration behind all that they create.
The Corkage collection includes handbags, purses, wallets, accessories and backpacks. Their cork is certified with the FSC© and is harvested by only removing the outer bark of the tree, allowing the tree to regrow within a couple of years. All of their products are natural, 100% animal-free and PETA-Approved Vegan. At every step of the way – from extraction, to manufacturing, to distribution –they seek to cause as little harm as possible, whilst creating a positive impact wherever & whenever possible.
ORG DE RAC VEGAN WINE
Wine has not generally been identified as a non-vegan product due to labeling laws and its association with grapes. However, in order to clarify the wine to reduce cloudiness, egg white, gelatine and certain fish products are traditionally used in the winemaking process.
In light of the growing popularity of a vegan lifestyle, Org de Rac has eschewed all animal products from their organic winemaking process. Whilst they followed an organic wine strategy from the outset, they are now replacing their use of any animals products with agents such as vegetable-based products and clay-based bentonite.
This shift in support of veganism has not only resulted in a decreased carbon footprint and greater sustainability, but through this focus on and their catering for the growing vegan market, Org de Rac is growing traction in the marketplace.
Their wines can be found in stockists nationwide and internationally as well as on their online shop. If you are in Piketberg, you may choose to stop by for an Org de Rac wine tasting.
Where: Piketberg | Online
GREEN & VEGAN POP-UP VEGAN DINING
Every fortnight, Patrick and Karen prepare and host a plant-based dinner at their home in Greenpoint Village. Their guests include singles, couples, locals and visitors, some vegan, but some not. Everything is made from scratch in their kitchen and the menu changes for each event. Find their upcoming menu on their Facebook page.
The evening begins with a welcome drink, with the choice of it being alcoholic. Past menus have included a carrot lox with horseradish cream on oatcakes as the starter and a garlic panisse with seasonal vegetables as the main course. The trio of mini desserts may include handmade chocolate truffles. After dessert, guests can choose to squeeze in some homemade vegan cheese and crackers.
Please note that the event does not include drinks other than the one on arrival, so please bring your own juice, beer or wine.
Whilst their vegan menu repeatedly receives raving reviews, many guests express that it is their conversation with the strangers who share their table that bring a particularly special element to this unique experience.
Where: 34 Clydebank Rd, Green Point, Cape Town
THE BESPOKE ARTICHOKE
The Bespoke Artichoke was born out of the need for a cruelty-free space where South African vegans do not need to label-check and compassionate people can shop with confidence.
With the aim to bring convenience to ethical shopping, Bespoke Artichoke has sourced vegan-friendly items from all over South Africa and a little over our boarders. These items include vegan eats, body, face and hair products, clothing, cookbooks, accessories, kid’s products and pet’s products.
All the products listed on Bespoke Artichoke are certified by Leaping Bunny or Beauty Without Cruelty. Their vegan eats are locally made and palm oil free. They have also kept their packaging to a minimum and only use up-cycled bubble wrap when necessary.
In light of Bespoke Artichoke’s view that we are the stewards of this planet, their commitment to choosing ethical products is unwavering. They are all about peace over violence, freedom over slavery and assisting South Africans to make ethical choices even when life is busy.
Tabu manufactures and provides high-quality, plant-based whole fermented foods and imported Japanese macrobiotic products. They also offer vegan macrobiotic consultations, counselling and seminars, all of which are based on the age-old principles of the Macrobiotic Diet as developed by George Osawa.
Their products include, but are not limited to miso, picked vegetables, teas, tempeh burger patties, sea vegetables and dry products.
Mika, the chef behind many of Tabu’s products, discovered macrobiotics 13 years ago. She realised that health and wellness lie not with good food alone, but with every aspect of how we choose to live our lives. As a result, she changed her direction to a whole-plant-based diet and is now promoting this incredibly delicious and healing way of eating.
All of Tabu’s products are certified organic, are non-GMO and in most cases, locally sourced. Whilst manufacturing, the macrobiotic principles are strictly adhered to, ensuring a perfect balance between Yin and Yang. This promotes a balanced, alkaline diet.
Sapmok, or the Afrikaans word Kompas spelt backwards, began in 2015 as a Modern Africa Adventure brand with an aim to support conservation efforts.
Sampok’s shoes are created by some of the best cobblers in South Africa, with comfort being a priority. Their shoe sizes range from children’s size 1 to men’s size 14. All cutting, measuring and stitching is done from scratch, allowing great amounts of creativity in the manufacturing process. If you wish, Sapmok gives customers the opportunity to be involved in the manufacturing process though choosing the material and colour of their shoes.
With a history of creating shoes from leather, Sapmok is now including more sustainable products in their range. After creating vegan vellies for a wedding photo shoot in Cape Town, their vegan series came to be. They are now growing their brand and shoe collection to not only include leather shoes, but also a greater variety of sustainable plant-based products. For Sapmok, this is only the beginning of a brand guided by even greater environmental responsibility.
Photograph by Nina Zimolong & Zach Louw.
Where: Online | 69 Thomas Edison, Menlo Park, Pretoria