Jeffrey Moret, TOFF:
“As the market for organic veg was 20 years ago, so is the market for vegan veg now”
The first month of the year was again renamed Veganuary and hundreds of thousands of people felt encouraged to eat vegan for a month. Lots of fruit and vegetables. But what not many people know is that it can go a step further. With vegan fruit and vegetables.
But fruit and vegetables are already vegan,’ is a common question. The biggest challenge for vegan AGF is therefore that it is unknown to consumers. “As the market for organic AGF was 20 years ago, so it is now with vegan AGF,” says Jeffrey Moret from TOFF in Barendrecht. About seven years ago, Jeffrey was introduced to the concept. Recently, he set up the Green Vegan brand, through which he trades fruit and vegetables with the Biocyclic Vegan certificate. Certified growers, in contrast to regular and organic growers, do not use any animal fertilisers. They also pay extra attention to the soil, water and biodiversity. Jeffrey calls it a logical successor to (organic) cultivation methods. “I really believe in this. We are all aware that we should eat less meat. There are cattle farms that live on the production of manure. If we stop doing that, it will free up land for nature and for new arable farming. There are big advantages for water, biodiversity and soil life.
Vegan cultivation is still in its infancy. Although creator Adolf Hoops has been working on the concept since 1950, the principles of organic vegan farming were only accredited as a global standard in 2017 by IFOAM, the umbrella organisation of the organic farming and food sector. In the Netherlands, there is so far one grower with this seal, as well as in Belgium. Most vegan growers are found in Greece and Germany. In Germany, the label is best known among consumers, although there the products are mainly sold in health food shops.