Vegan Bowl

Veganism Is On The Rise But Where Is The Best Vegan-Friendly City?

Veganism seems to be everywhere in 2019, more people are converting to a vegan diet for many reasons including wanting a better diet as well as helping the environment. But do you know where the friendliest cities for vegans are in the world?

A new list has been released and America has managed to secure three of the top ten cities, missing out on the top spot to London in the United Kingdom.

The HappyCow list ranks cities based on four factors: how many vegan restaurants are available in a five-mile radius in the most vegan restaurant-dense region in each city (London has 152 while New York City has 111), how many vegan/vegetarian/veg-option restaurants are available – also in the same five mile area, the vegan restaurant count to population density, and the reporters opinion of the availability of a vegan community, festivals and meet-ups in the area.

As the largest vegan and vegetarian restaurant guide in the world, with reviews on vegan options in more than 180 countries, HappyCow are definitely the people who would know!

In the last ten years since the website was launched they have seen the number of completely vegan restaurants listed on their site increase from 625 to an amazing 8100, and that does not include the amount of vegan-friendly or vegetarian restaurants that are on offer.

So which American cities have made their top ten?

In at number 7 is Portland in Oregon. Known as an eco-friendly city popular with hipsters, there are many restaurants available including 46 vegan restaurants, 26 vegetarian restaurant and 185 veg-friendly restaurants, with more vegan restaurants due to open soon, which means you have a wide choice of restaurants available to you.

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Their vegan and vegetarian restaurants are an important factor of Portland’s society and their city has a huge selection of amazing vegan options, including the popular Ichiza Kitchen and Teahouse who specializes in shojin ryori-style meals.

If you are looking for a more family-friendly feel for your dining experience the Vertical Diner and Gold Room have also been recommended in the list which also covers burgers – Next Level Burger – coffee shops – Oracle Coffee Company – and donuts – Doe Donut.

There are also many food carts dedicated to vegan foods which is another factor that Portland is famous for and the vegan strip mall houses a vegan bake shop, grocery store, vegan tattoo shop and a massage therapy studio as well as many amazing vegan restaurants, cafes and coffee shops. If you prefer to go out and have a few drinks head towards vegan bars Maxwell or Capitol who also provide vegan cocktails alongside their food.

Often referred to as a ‘vegan haven’ Los Angeles has come in at number 4. Home to many vegan celebrities – including Joaquin Phoenix, Billie Eilish and Alicia Silverstone – Los Angeles has an amazing 49 fully vegan restaurants with a further 190 vegetarian/vegan friend restaurants within a five mile radius.

If you are looking for a healthier diet there are many options in the City of Angels. Famous for its large choice of international vegan restaurants – there are 19 establishments that specialize in vegan Thai food, two Ethiopian vegan restaurants as well as several Japanese, Vietnamese and Cuban restaurants. There is also a vegan cheese restaurant or you may prefer Italian vegan food, vegan burgers or many other vegan options.

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You can also head to Little Pine, a vegan bistro owned by musician Moby, where they serve not only serve a fusion of Italian and Mediterranean dishes, but they also donate 100% of their profits to different animal causes. Celebrity Chef Tal Ronen also has a successful vegan Mediterranean while Matthew Kenney has recently refurbished the 150 year old baker bakery Ladurée’s Beverly Hills branch.

Unsurprisingly, New York City has come in as the second friendliest vegan city in the world, thanks to its immense choice of diverse cuisines. Often considered to be the international food capital of the world, New York has seen a fantastic growth in their vegan industry with 111 vegan restaurants now available in a five mile area within the city. As well as some amazing restaurants, New York City has a wide selection of food carts with many more opening that are vegan specific.

Whether you head to the Vegan Food Court which is home to many great establishments including Marty’s V Burger, V Spot and Jam Cakery (because we all need dessert however healthy we try to eat!). Or why not head to a takeaway such as V-Life?

As with all the cities on the list New York offers many high-end vegan restaurants including the Franchia Vegan Café.

Vegan restaurants are seeing a huge surge in popularity and it is clear that 2020 will continue the trend so we expect to see the list for the top vegan friendly cities to change.

Coconut Milk

A Mixture of Lost Contracts Plus The Growth of Non-Dairy Milk Products Sees America’s Largest Milk Producer File For Bankruptcy

It was announced on Tuesday that the country’s biggest milk producer – Dean Foods – has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, sparking fears for farmers everywhere.
Based in Dallas, Dean Foods have had to secure $850 million commitments in debtor-in-possession financing, which is a form of funding companies suffering financial difficulties can acquire. However the company will be utilizing the Chapter 11 proceedings to enable them to address their debt as well as their unfunded debt obligations, all while they aim to keep their business operating.

It is believed there will be no breaks in any of their customers’ orders and all dairy products should be delivered as per their usual contracts. Concerns were raised regarding their employees however as it was revealed that the company has not been funding all their workers’ pensions.

The organization also confirmed that they had executed a strategic review in September and have opted to keep the company operating rather than selling it off. Yet they have also announced they are currently in ‘advanced discussions’ with Dairy Farmers of America and are looking to potentially sell a ‘substantial’ amount of its assets. If this is the case the transaction would still have to accept other offers of purchase while working through their bankruptcy stage.

It appears that as a nation our dietary habits are changing, with more and more people either suffering from lactose issues, choosing a healthier or even vegan diet, or preferring to opt for private label products.

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A combination of these has resulted in the per capita consumption of milk to drop 26 per cent in the last 20 years although 2019 has been particularly difficult for the company. Sales have fallen 7 per cent in the first six months of the year resulting in a drop in profits of 14%. There has also been 80% of its stock lost this year despite being the producers of some of our most popular dairy and milk labels – including Organic Valley, Land O’Lakes milks and Dairy Pure.

The demand for cow’s milk in recent times has been consistently reducing each year with sales for the last 52 weeks up to October 26 hitting $12 billion globally – according to CNN Business. Compare this to the $15 billion made in a like-for-like period during 2015 it is easy to see that the dairy companies cannot survive producing purely cow’s milk. However the smaller market of oat milk has increased by 636 per cent in the last 12 months taking sales to around $53 million, showing there clearly is a shift in America’s drinking habits.

And although the global market looks to be hitting $18 billion this year for milk alternatives – an increase of 3.5 per cent from last year – the traditional milk market will still outperform it by a considerable sum with around $120 billion expected worldwide.

The recent decision by Walmart in 2017 to move to their own milk supply subsequently led to the Dean Foods having to terminate over 100 contracts across eight states, leaving dairy farmers also in a dire financial situation as they tried to replace their deals.

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A year later Food Lion also cut ties with the company resulting in Dean Foods reporting a net loss for seven out of its last eight quarters.

The news will come as a shock to the country’s farmers who are already trying to cope with the ever changing market thanks to a labor shortage and trade issues. Add to that the consistently dropping dairy prices and it is no wonder many farmers themselves are also being forced to close their businesses.

Eric Beringause, who took over as President and Chief Executive Officer of Dean Foods in September announced:
‘The actions we are announcing are designed to enable us to continue serving our customers and operating as normal as we work toward the sale of our business. Despite our best efforts to make our business more agile and cost-efficient, we continue to be impacted by a challenging operating environment marked by continuing declines in consumer milk consumption.’

Senior Vice President of Communications for the lobbying group released a statement to CNBC stating:
‘A number of [the National Milk Producers Federation’s] member cooperatives provide milk to Dean Foods and could be impacted by today’s bankruptcy filing. We are gathering information to better assess the situation and will work closely with our members to provide whatever support we are able to through this process.’

Dean Foods has enjoyed a ‘history of goodness’ for 94 years since it was founded in 1925 by Samuel E. Dean Sr. after he procured evaporating milk processing company Pecatonica Marketing Company. After changing its name in 1927 to Dean Evaporating Milk Company a relationship was born between the Dean name and the ‘wholesome, healthy sources of nutrition’. By 1929 the name would change again to Dean Milk Company, finally settling on Dean Foods in 1963.