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From Time magazine to the Huffington Post, the Herbivorous Butcher is popping up in media outlets everywhere. Started by brother sister duo Aubrey and Kale Walch, the all-vegan eatery in Minneapolis, Minn. held its official opening last weekend.
Launch day saw lines down the block and two-hour wait times. Customers snapped up cruelty-free versions of Italian sausage, smoky BBQ ribs, pepperoni and lots of other plant-based goodies. A NowThis video about the shop’s first weekend has already earned more than five million views.
The team got their start in a farmer’s market, then raised more than $61,000 via Kickstarter to open a brick and mortar location. Now, omnivores and herbivores alike are buzzing about the Walch’s delicious meats, cheeses and creative vegan eats. (For those not in the Minneapolis area, the shop sells some items online, including a vegan starter kit and a jerky sampler.)
As you can imagine, the meat industry isn’t pleased about the shop’s success. The National Hog Farmer blog ran a piece slamming the vegan butcher concept and calling it “unethical.”
That’s an interesting choice of words for an industry that profits from the suffering and death of sentient beings. Nonetheless, the meat industry’s fear is a good sign: it means the rise of veganism in mainstream culture is threatening their bottom line.
Clearly, consumers are open to new approaches to their favorite products. Why eat animals when you don’t have to? Innovation and compassion are taking center stage, and the results are totally delicious.