For Sunny Bhanage, becoming a fully vegan store was just a dream of his a month ago. A life-long Jain who owned many other convenience stores knew that in this capitalist society, you had adhere to one thing: supply and demand. At the moment that he met us, my husband Jonathan, and I along with our small one Sadie, he was very unsure that he could sustain himself and be a fully vegan store.
However, we had an idea together that changed everything. Knowing that we had a vegan marketing company, and being able to have the freedom to do the philanthropic side of our business while my husband took the paid customers, I realized we could have the ability to help Sunny’s store become 100% vegan. We made an agreement with him that if we could bring in 50-100 people a day to make vegan purchases, that his store would become 100% vegan in one month.
After rigorous marketing digitally from ads to events, we along with the amazing vegan San Diego community, were able to make it happen. When Sunny was able to see not only he could sustain himself, but that he could blossom from the San Diego vegan community, he was full hearted. “I am passionate about veganism, helping people be healthy, and saving lives. Life is more important than money. Thanks to our community, I can now focus on that,” said Sunny Bhanage, owner of Mission Square Market. “This is my dream, I hope we can educate people who are not vegan to help them become vegan as well. The whole San Diego vegan community has been so supportive, and it is thanks to them that we are here.” A quote from the press release.
This really seemed like it would have been harder, an amazing feat, but it was actually easier than we expected. If you have a loving vegan community, some time on your hands and marketing expertise, anything can happen! We are so excited, all of us, that we are helping create the first fully vegan market in San Diego. Not only is this happening, but we have plans to help him expand into veganic grocery, and more!
His official vegan launch will happen on Sunday, June 3rd along with donations from some of the most amazing vegan products and people I know, such as Greenback Gorilla : Vegan Living & Fitness, Veg’n Out, StarLite Cuisine™, Kelly’s Croutons, Maya’s Cookies, Unisoy, Aveccio Vegan Digital Marketing, and Seva Foods. We are very excited to participate in this event and it is open to everyone.
Jonathan Levley, my husband and president of Aveccio, responded “We are so honored to partner with someone like Sunny, it takes someone with passion and guts to be able to trust us to bring people. We are also very thankful to our vegan community in San Diego as well. It just goes to show that activism through commerce can happen, and we can grow our movement.”
We are moving forward, and after seeing some great activism such as DXE’s rescue of 40 chickens, we hope that we can help support future activism efforts of saving lives through peaceful protest or rescue via creating a financially stable vegan community. It is so exciting to see the movement of a non-vegan establishment to become a fully vegan one, it just creates more opportunity for the community to grow – and grow it has! Now there will be monthly Wellness Wednesdays where Dr. Chris McLain, a plant based doctor, and Tracy Childs, a plant-based health coach, are leading a public campaign towards educating everyone on plant-based health and eating. We hope to see many other events like this hosted at Mission Square Market and are excited to see where it is 5 years from now!