I had seen the advert for a vegan market throughout my Facebook feed for a while and wrote the date in my diary. When the day finally came around, I dragged my friend along to check it out. We payed £2 entry and it was held at the Nottingham Conference Centre, which is located next to my University campus.
The event was held by Vegan Markets UK who specialise in connecting the ever growing vegan interested British population with vegan companies, ideas and people.
It was evident that they are committed to operating the business in a sustainable and responsible manner and making sure it is a positive part of society. They donate 10% of all profits from the events to social and environmental charities and make every effort to make the events as sustainable as possible. I love the fact that their ultimate aim is to make all of the events carbon neutral.
I wasn’t really sure what to expect when we entered the building but there were definitely more stalls than I was expecting. We had a wander round each, stopping at the stands that intrigued us the most. The stalls included hot food, snacks, drinks, homemade treats, skin care and beauty, clothing, jewellery, sauces and jars and even china.
When I was walking round I got some tasters from some of the stands, one of them being a stand of independent spreads. I dipped the rice cakes that were provided into the jars to have a try of each one on offer. I tried one that was sesame seed and cacao, another one being a seed spread and the last one was based on coconut and cacao which I thought was similar to the taste of hazelnuts. They all had interesting flavours and I love the fact that they were all made with very few natural ingredients; they were based around coconut oil and coconut sugar.
At one of the hot food stalls, I was tempted to buy one of the pastry-type food items. The sign stated it was a gram flour pastry, filled with sweet potato and quinoa. I was put off however because I was unsure what the sauce inside was like as I had never before heard of it before!
I am a massive fan of nut butter, so when I came across a stand full of jars, I was very happy. They weren’t just any old nut butters though; they all had added ingredients to give them a slight twist to the traditional spreads. The flavours included: chocolate orange cashew butter, cinnamon cashew butter, raspberry cashew butter, and many more with variations also of peanut and almond butters. The only one that I tried was the gingerbread almond butter. I could definitely taste the ginger! It was a little bit too strong for me.
I did make a purchase at one of the snack stands. I spotted my favourite chocolate brand Ombar, which I find really hard to get hold of unless I go to London or order online off Amazon. Previously, I have tried the 72% dark chocolate and Coco Mylk chocolate bars. This time I opted to try the 90% Cacao bar and the Coco Mylk buttons. I can’t wait to try them! I really like Ombar because all of their ingredients are natural and minimally processed to deliver as much goodness as possible. I was also drawn to the Montezuma’s Organic Dark Chocolate Giant Buttons but I decided I had enough chocolate for the time being.
Although never my friend or I are fully vegan, I really enjoyed wandering round the stalls and I feel that each mini business spread the positive message of veganism in a really fun and engaging way. This in my opinion will help the interested public and vegan businesses connect with each other, share ideas and grow together.
Have you ever visited a vegan market?