Vegan butcher shop The Very Good Butchers is set to open on Canada’s west coast in Victoria, BC on February 25. The shop will feature products such as organic bean- and grain-based meats made at a small facility on Denman Island, which will also supply local BC restaurants and health food stores. Couple James Davison and Tania Friesen—who met when they both worked at a vegetarian restaurant in Vancouver—began selling their vegan and organic products at a local farmer’s market last spring, with the goal of making meat alternatives accessible to vegans and those looking to reduce their meat consumption. After demand at the farmer’s market began outpacing their production capabilities, the couple partnered with marketing director Mitchell Scott to open their storefront. “As people are becoming more aware of the impacts of what they’re eating,” Friesen tells VegNews, “there is an increasing demand for plant-based alternatives. We want to help people make that transition.” The Very Good Butchers will offer plant-based takes on ground meat, sausages, roasts, pastrami, and more. Additionally, the shop will serve hot food including burgers, salads, daily specials, and deli sandwiches made with vegan cheese sourced from collaborator Blue Heron Creamery. The Very Good Butchers are part of a growing trend of plant-based butcher shops and Friesen says, “We’re excited to join the list of such great companies out there making a difference.” In 2014, Ontario-based YamChops became the first vegan butcher shop in North America, with Minnesota’s wildly successful Herbivorous Butcher opening shortly thereafter in early 2016. The Very Good Butchers plan to expand to a second Vancouver location in the future, and will make their products available online throughout North America.
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