The International Vegan Film Festival (IVFF) is welcoming vegan cheese entrepreneur Miyoko Schinner to its panel of judges this year. Based in Ottawa, Canada, the IVFF first debuted in 2018 and screens films that focus on topics such as animal rights, ethical food, and fashion choices, sustainability, and climate change. Schinner—who owns California-based vegan brand Miyoko’s Creamery—was selected for her entrepreneurial prowess and decades-long impact on the animal-rights movement. “Telling a story through cinema is one of the best ways to capture the emotion of the argument and communicate to viewers,” Schinner said about the importance of the IVFF. “Through films, we can change minds and hearts and help transition the world to a more compassionate place.”

The festival’s other judges include Dale Vince, CEO of Ecotricity and owner of the British vegan soccer team Forest Green Rovers; Jim Amos Chief Operating Officer of the plant-based PR agency Scout 22; David Flynn, author and co-owner of The Happy Pear; and Dan Moskaluk, an animal-rights activist and plant-based health advocate. “We are thrilled to have Miyoko join our small team of festival judges,” IVFF Director Director Shawn Stratton said. “Her passion and experience in the plant-based movement and strong opinions will help us decipher the best vegan-themed films submitted to the festival each year.” The third annual festival is planned for October 2020 and Miyoko’s newest vegan cheese products—made from allergen-friendly oats and legumes—are hitting Whole Foods Markets shelves this month.