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The Indian Vegan Checklist: 8 Start-Ups Revolutionising the Way We Eat ‘Meat’

From a variety of plant-based dairy products to vegan meat alternatives, we have rounded up a range of products in India that will help you go vegan!

While more and more people are turning vegan across the world, the trend is yet to catch up extensively in India, where it is often confused with vegetarianism.

The distinction between a vegan and vegetarian diet is rejecting the consumption of anything that causes animal cruelty in the former, which entirely rules out products from the dairy and meat industry, and instead, relying on plant-based products for essential proteins and nutrients.

While there definitely is a rise in the number of people in India who are adopting the lifestyle, what deters most from turning vegan is the notion that veganism is a costly way of life and that vegan products are not easily accessible.

To disprove such notions and help others to embrace veganism, many youngsters from different corners of the country have come up with economic and sustainable alternatives that won’t burn a hole in your pockets and are quite accessible too!

From a variety of plant-based dairy products to vegan meat alternatives, we have rounded up a range of products in India, which will help you adopt a vegan lifestyle, should you choose to do so:

1. Goodmylk

Source: Facebook.

Founded as Veganarke by Abhay Rangan, a 21-year-old engineering student who used to deliver plant-based milk that he and his mother used to prepare in their kitchen on his cycle across Bengaluru, the company, now rebranded as Goodmylk, has a manufacturing facility and an in-house logistics team that works to help people across the country access shelf-stable almond and coconut-based vegan milk and curd. These are priced between ₹110-120 and can be ordered online.

You can check the website and products here.

2. SAIN

Credits: @shimmerwithplants/ Instagram.

Priced between ₹145-160 per bottle, SAIN is a Delhi-based vegan startup started by Sheena and Tarun Jain this year that offers almond milk in a variety of flavours ranging from cardamom, cacao, vanilla, and many others.

Upon realising that there was a lack in almond-based dairy products in the market, the duo decided to launch SAIN to supply clean and fresh almond milk that tasted like it was homemade, while only using quality ingredients, which are full of enriching nutrients. They only deliver in Delhi and Gurugram.

You can check out their products here.

3. Good Dot

Source: Facebook.

Probably the only startup in India that specialises in plant-based meat, Good Dot took birth when a group of animal lovers in Udaipur joined forces with an animal activist in the US! Currently, they offer two products—vegan mutton and a soy-like variant that is unlike the soy chunks you might have tasted. These are cheaply priced at ₹135 and ₹65, respectively and a vegan chicken product that is in the pipeline, will hit the markets soon!

You can look up their website here.

4. The Happy Calf (THC)

Source: THC.

Started in the summer of 2017, The Happy Calf is a Bengaluru-based household enterprise, which provides healthy, plant-based dairy alternatives in the city. Their products are priced nominally and range from coconut and almond-based ‘mylk’ to peanut-based curd and cheese made out of almonds!

You can check out their products here.

5. Cowvathi

Source: Facebook.

Known for its different varieties of vegan cheese, Cowvathi is a Mumbai-based venture kickstarted by Shasvathi Siva in 2017. She gave up her career in advertising to offer vegan cheeses and dips in handpicked flavours for those looking for cruelty-free dairy alternatives. Though these are made on order from a small kitchen space-cum-studio in Vashi, Navi Mumbai and delivery is limited to the city at present, Cowvathi also retails at Rare Earth in Khar and Earth Story in Chennai.

You can reach out to them on Facebook and Instagram.

6. Chetran Foods

Source: Facebook.

Based out of Pune, Chetran Foods has an array of tofu and soymilk-based food products that have been specifically tweaked to suit the Indian palette and cuisine. With a good shelf life, these products are quite cheap—with tofu products priced between ₹35-40 and soymilk costing between ₹15-22.

The store also has a delicious variety of soymilk-based products including spreads, mayonnaise, chutneys, lassi, curd and amarkhand along with soy bran (okara) based snacks and burgers!

You can look up their website here.

7. Vegan Bites

Source: Instagram.

While Mumbai’s iconic dabbawala service is world-famous, a vegan dabbawala service is definitely a unique concept! Launched in 2011, Vegan Bites is a Mumbai-based tiffin service started by Samir Prasad. With a client base of over 300 (reportedly), the service gives one the opportunity to choose wholesome and fresh plant-based meals from a variety of cuisines including Lebanese, South Indian, Thai, Italian, and Indian and also offers vegan ice creams, cakes, and desserts.

You can check out their website here.

8. Wegan Foods

Source: Facebook.

Founded by Kinjal Darukhanawala in 2017, Mumbai-based Wegan Foods offers vegan cheese that uses nutritional yeast (nooch) unlike other vegan dairy products and is an excellent source of vegan plant protein, Vitamin B complex, dietary fibre, selenium, zinc and yeast glucan. Their products are all dairy free, nut free, soy free and gluten free and a 50g packet is priced at ₹350.

You can look up their website here.

For more vegan products and stores in India, click here.

(Edited by Gayatri Mishra)

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Written by Lekshmi Priya S

Shuttling between existentialist views and Grey's Anatomy, Lekshmi has an insanely disturbing habit of binge reading. An ardent lover of animals and plants, she also specializes in cracking terribly sad jokes.