Page 25 - Varsity Special Issue
P. 25

22 /Lifestyle                                                                                            / 23

 a plant-based diet at least one day a   Modern Vegetarian Startups in   up meat gradually for a better me and
 week, according to the Hong Kong   Hong Kong  better world,” Chan says.
 Vegetarian Habit Survey conducted    Esther Chan and Joei Lo became   “Anti-COVID-19 restriction on
 by Green Monday in 2020. The num-  vegetarians three years ago. “At that  seating capacity caused a drop of
 ber has increased by 44 per cent com-  time, most vegetarian restaurants  50 per cent of our business.  In July   “
 pared with the same survey conduct-  were traditional Chinese restaurants.  and August, we had a six-digit loss
 ed in 2018.  There were some luxurious vegetarian  in both months,” she says. She adds   Every bill in a vegetarian
 Green Monday, the Hong Kong-  restaurants, but they were expensive,”  that the pandemic is the most difficult
 headquartered plant-based social   Chan says.   situation since they opened and they   restaurant is a life-or-death
 venture, was founded in 2012. It ad-  The pair decided to open their own  expect no improvement in coming   vote for the animal.
 vocates the adoption of a plant-based   vegetarian restaurant in 2017 – an all-  months.
 diet, and it owns nine retail stores   you-can-eat restaurant that serves   Kay Kwan King-wun and his wife
 in Hong Kong which provide plant-  Southeast Asian plant-based dishes  Kit  Ho  Kit-ting  is  another  pair  who
 based food products.   located in Tai Kok Tsui.  opened a vegetarian restaurant. The   ”
 The social venture announced it   Chan and Lo are determined to  couple quit their jobs last year at the
 raised US$70 million from global in-  prove plant-based dining can be inno-  age of 33 and started a vegetarian café
 vestors to accelerate its market growth   vative, delicious and diversified with  in Sham Shui Po and later in Tsuen
 on September 22 on its website.    food choices. “We encourage meat  Wan.  The  café  serves  fusion  plant-  K wan and Ho in fro n t o f their vegetairan cafe in Sham
                                                   Kwan and Ho in front of their vegetairan cafe in Sham
 lovers to take a small step to try giving  based dishes such as Spicy Thai Im-  Shu i P o. (Photo c ou rtesy o f Years )
                                                   Shui Po. (Photo courtesy of Years)

     possible Spaghetti and Tom Yum Ri-  networking with vegetarians who also  lack an effective tool to find plant-
     sotto.                              love animals. The group now has over  based products. Ching and other ad-
        “More and more people are aware  70,000 members.                     ministrators of the Facebook group
     of vegetarianism, but vegetarian res-  “The platform connects               are also building an app - Veg-
     taurant choices (in Hong Kong) are     vegetarians, vegetarian-                Future, which has lists of
     limited,” Kwan says. Inspired by res-  to-bes, and plant-based                  plant-based restaurants and
     taurants the couple visited in other  businesses. Members ex-                    plant-sourced shops. The
     countries, they develop fusion dishes  change cooking recipes,                   app has a search function
     for their menu.                     recommend     restaurants                    for users to identify non-
                                         to each other and share                     vegan ingredients like addi-
          The Online Vegetarian          diet tips in the group,” Ching             tives E120 and E966      which
               Community                 says.                      J oe Ching Pu i -sang  are commonly used in sweets
                                                                    Joe Ching Pui-sang
        Joe Ching Pui-sang started a Face-  Ching says many vegetar-                and cakes.
     book community group “The Vegetar-  ian  restaurants  have little resources   “Even though conscious entrepre-
     ian Youth” 11 years ago in bid to build  in doing marketing while vegetarians  neurs are bringing greater variety to
                                                                             vegetarian catering market, we still
                                                                             need to speed up the change,” Ching
                                                                                “Every bill in a vegetarian restau-
                                                                             rant is a life-or-death vote for ani-
                                                                             mals,” he adds.

                                                                                   Edited by Regina Chen
                                                                                   Edited by Regina Chen

 My Meat Ru n Bu dd y in T ai Kok T sui. ( Photo c ourtesy o f My Meat Ru n Bu dd y )
 My Meat Run Buddy in Tai Kok Tsui. (Photo courtesy of My Meat Run Buddy)
             The Vegetarian Y ou th has o ver 70,000 members  o n F acebook.
             The Vegetarian Youth has over 70,000 members  on Facebook.
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