We’ve each known varying degrees of darkness in recent months, but light is tenacious, shining through wherever we give it the smallest opening. This theme held true for my 2020 experience, both personally and professionally: things felt difficult, but I was determined to find those elusive silver linings. In the end, they found me first!
Way back in May, I teamed up with Effect Partners, a Minneapolis agency committed to solving issues around climate change, food security, and social justice. They recruited me to join the Food Fighters Collective—a fantastic group of folks with interlocking skill sets. We started brainstorming and bonding over countless Zoom calls, and in no time at all, I had what felt like a second family.
These amazing humans inspire me to know better and do better on a daily basis. Laser-focused on helping BIPOC communities hit hard by the pandemic, our efforts culminated in the creation of Plantega—an initiative bringing healthy, affordable, plant-based foods to bodegas in underserved neighborhoods.
What the heck are bodegas, you ask? First sprouted in New York, they’re corner stores that act as 24/7 lifelines for people without easy access to larger grocery chains. Often family-owned, each bodega is unique (and many boast a feline resident to discourage rodents), but few of them feature vegan options. That’s about to change! Plantega offers essentials like chicken, burgers, tuna, eggs, cheese, coffee creamer, jerky, and protein bars…all delicious and animal-free.
How do we deliver the goods? We partner with the best vegan brands in the business and work directly with bodega owners to gain their trust. Our custom blend of tasty products and grilled sandwiches (as big as your head) are available in three bodegas across Brooklyn and The Bronx—with more on the way, if all goes as planned. We’ve gotten plenty of press, and the buzz is still spreading:
As the designer + wordsmith behind this initiative, I’m thrilled to see our concept go from seed to fruition in the boroughs of NYC. Busy shoppers are discovering they don’t have to break the bank or ditch their favorite foods to eat in a way that nurtures their health, the environment, and the animals, too.
Best of all, while crafting Plantega’s brand presence—including the logo, tagline, signage, displays, marketing copy, social media graphics, grill menus + more—I felt the full support of my fellow Food Fighters. This was a truly collaborative process! Visit the Plantega portfolio page and take a peek at the creative juice Parfait Studio contributed.
My experience with Effect Partners and the Food Fighters has been, hands down, the best silver lining I could’ve hoped for in 2020. Combining our superpowers to build something big was an absolute joy…and we’re just getting started! Stay tuned for more “good stuff.”