It’s no secret that veganism has been on the rise in the UAE. And a new pop-up market aims to cater to just that.
Not Just For Vegans, an online boutique selling artisan products and essential items, has teamed up with Thrift For Good, to launch a vegan market from noon to 8pm on Friday.
Taking place at the Thrift for Good Palm pop-up in Golden Mile, Palm Jumeirah, the event will have more than 20 stands with a range of vendors covering everything from cruelty-free accessories, candles, clothes, food, handbags, haircare, children’s clothing, make-up, skincare, yoga accessories and more.
Visitors can expect to find brands including Grawtitude, which makes plant-based cheeses; West African cuisine brand Veghana; Palm Lights, which creates palm wax candles; natural ice lollies brand House of Pops; yoga accessories brand Meow Yoga; ethically sourced cosmetics company Beauty Binge; and reusable bottle company Loch.
Craft fragrance boutique Oo La Lab will also be setting up a workshop where visitors will be able to develop their own custom scent.
The free-to-attend event will also include children’s activities, such as workshops on how to make purses and upcycled bird feeders.
According to Carly Dubery, the founder of Not Just For Vegans, this is the first all-vegan pop-up in the UAE, and hopes more such events will follow. She says that while all the brands need not necessarily be vegan, all the products they will be displaying and selling will be vegan.
“It’s about making people more aware and making these products more accessible,” Dubery tells The National. “Everyone, not just vegans, can make a difference and a positive impact by making alternative choices. At the same time, you’ll be supporting small businesses.”
Dubery says she set up Not Just for Vegans in July 2020 as a way to bring together vegan entrepreneurs in the Middle East. The online boutique offers consulting, event planning and networking opportunities to vegan brands.
Dubery, who turned vegan seven years ago, says that it’s not just for vegans or vegan brands, but about working side by side with the rest of the community as well.
“If you’re a store owner, for example, it’s important to be a part such events and learn about products because it helps connect you to vegan businesses which might be good for your brand. It could also lead to more vegan brands being on a supermarket shelf. It’s a different way of expanding the vegan sector in the market."
The same goes for individuals, she adds.
“When it comes to veganism, there’s a saying that ‘we don’t need a handful of people doing it perfectly, but millions of people doing it imperfectly’ and I think that’s so true," Dubery says.
“I hope all people can come down and realise that there are incredible products out there that are also affordable and good for the planet.”