About Vegan Supermarket UK
How a flying laptop, tiny budget, many sleepless nights and an all-consuming passion to stop animal cruelty led one man to create Vegan Supermarket UK.
Meet Brian Muskett. Founder, Vegan Supermarket UK
I am very excited where Vegan Supermarket UK is heading and I have even bigger plans for the future but this page is dedicated to our history and sharing how it all began.
How It All Started…
I was very lucky to be born into a loving family who adored all animals and I grew up with the family pet, ‘Lassie’ a border collie. Like many people of my era, we weren’t vegan.
As I grew up it became increasingly obvious that the world had a great deal of animal cruelty. This troubled me greatly and I planned to dedicate my life to stopping it when I became a millionaire by age 30 (“This time next year Rodney”).
Well, ‘life sort of happened’.
My gorgeous wife, 3 fantastic children, 5 beautiful grandchildren and rapidly advancing years have empowered me to actually do something.
In 2013 I worked very hard on setting up www.animal-welfare.org. It was a huge learning curve both fundamentally and technically.
There Were Five Takeaways From This Venture.
- I turned vegetarian (I now realise that wasn’t enough)
- ‘Animal welfare’ still enables animal cruelty (think RSPCA Freedom Food).
- I posted a lot of cruelty-related articles & images to bring the unseen horror to a wider audience.
- Distressing images upset many people and understandably, they didn’t stay on my site (but maybe they collectively helped to fuel the rise of veganism that we are now seeing)
- The investigative work upset me terribly.
- I was just highlighting a problem and not offering a solution.
- Veganism was only for hippies and tree huggers – apparently.
So, Website Iteration 2 Was Formed; www.cruelty-free-lifestyle.org
I learned that..
- Necessity is the mother of all invention. We need to keep innovating.
- I had to provide a viable alternative to products that cause cruelty.
- I needed to monetise my site to pay for running expenses.
- I had to research totally vegan and cruelty free products and the business that sold these products.
- Many sites were advertising ‘Get all your vegan products here’ and yet they were selling ‘ethical’ meat!! (that’s when my laptop nearly went flying out of the window!).
- Nobody searched for my keywords (even though the articles were good).
- My product pages sometimes had incorrect prices because suppliers updated them periodically. This resulted in a poor user experience.
- I wasn’t going to let this stop me. I always loved a challenge, and the solution was obvious.
So Vegan Supermarket UK Was Born
- I am learning Search Engine Optimisation to find keywords that people search for.
- I have aligned with vegan suppliers who share our strict values (no animal cruelty)
- Vegans are busy people and they don’t have time to search around online. They need to have confidence in a website that sells ONLY vegan and cruelty free products.
- Its still a labour of love but I think I’m getting there as people seem to like what I’m doing.
What started with a concept has grown into a passion to provide the best vegan shopping experience for everyone – but our core values remain the same.
So, What’s Next?
We started with a tiny budget and no venture capital firms backing us. It’s thanks to you, our customers, that share our passion and vision that we are where we are – and we are here to stay.
We have big plans for the future and are really excited about where we can take Vegan Supermarket UK.
We want to provide the ultimate go-to vegan shopping portal for our customers – possibly built on the Amazon/eBay model.
We invite you to join us on this journey, and let’s create a kinder world – together.
Brian Muskett – Founder