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Championing Ethical Plant-Based Practices ft. Shabari Monica Das


Welcome to another exciting episode of Plant Based On Fire, where we uncover inspiring plant-based businesses and the incredible entrepreneurs behind them. In our latest episode, we had the pleasure of interviewing Shabari Monica Das, a 25-year veteran vegan and a true advocate for ethical practices. Shabari is not just a founder of the World Vegan Market but also a leader in the London Vegan Business Network and a respected author.





The Birth of World Vegan Market: A Virtual Haven for Vegan Entrepreneurs


Shabari's journey in the plant-based business world started during the second lockdown when she launched the World Vegan Market. This online platform emerged as a breath of fresh air during challenging times, providing a virtual space for vegan businesses to showcase their products and services. But Shabari had a bigger vision in mind - she didn't just want a regular marketplace but also an educational and entertainment platform. With nearly 4,000 members on the World Vegan Market Facebook group and growing, Shabari's innovative concept attracts entrepreneurs and consumers alike.


Building Connections: Shabari's Approach to Authentic Business Relationships


The market offers various promotional packages to its stallholders, allowing them to reach their target audience effectively. What sets the World Vegan Market apart is Shabari's commitment to understanding the brand stories behind each business, creating genuine connections between sellers and consumers.


A Journey Rooted in Compassion: Shabari's 25-Year Vegan Story


Shabari's vegan journey is just as impressive as her business success. She became vegan 25 years ago, initially inspired by a stall at the Kingston Green Fair that shed light on the cruelty of the dairy and egg industries. Since then, she has been an ardent advocate for animal rights and a driving force in the vegan community. Her dedication and passion have undoubtedly been the keys to her success in both business and life.


Inspiring Success: How Shy Entrepreneurs Flourish on World Vegan Market


Shabari's story resonates with many, and it's no surprise that the World Vegan Market continues to thrive and inspire others to make conscious, compassionate choices. Throughout the interview, Shabari shared her experiences and insights into the vegan business world, making it a must-listen for aspiring entrepreneurs in the plant-based industry. Her success stories, like that of one shy but talented entrepreneur who flourished through the platform, showcase how the World Vegan Market can truly change lives.


17th Online Market: Unveiling the Green and Glowing Summer Market


As the World Vegan Market embarks on its 17th online market, the Summer Market, there's no doubt that Shabari's commitment to creating a greener, brighter world will continue to attract more businesses and consumers to this exceptional platform.


Whether you're a seasoned vegan entrepreneur or someone new to the plant-based business scene, Shabari's interview on Plant Based On Fire will leave you inspired, motivated, and ready to take your business to new heights. So, plant-based business people, don't miss out on this fantastic opportunity to connect with like-minded individuals and grow your brand through the World Vegan Market. Shabari Monica Das is undoubtedly a trailblazer in the plant-based business world, and her journey will inspire you to make a positive impact on the planet, one vegan business at a time. Tune in to Plant Based On Fire, and let Shabari's story ignite the fire within you!


>Transcription


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[Bryan]: It's working now. Um, I'll start all

over. Hello everyone and welcome to Plant Based


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[Bryan]: on Fire again. I am Brian, your host

for the show and we really appreciate you tuning


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[Bryan]: in to find out more about another amazing

plant based business that we have uncovered


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[Bryan]: here. So ladies and gentlemen, I wanted

to introduce you to Shabari. She is a passionate


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[Bryan]: 25 year veteran vegan and advocate

for ethical practices. and a pillar of the


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[Bryan]: vegan business community as a founder

of the World Vegan Market and a leader in the


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[Bryan]: London Vegan Business Network. And

not only that, she's a respected author. And


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[Bryan]: she contributes to the green living

and business ethics part of the community here.


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[Bryan]: So I wanted to just introduce Shabari

to the podcast here and look forward to talking


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[Bryan]: to you about your inspiring. journey

and future plans for a greener, brighter world.


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[Bryan]: So welcome Shabari.


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[Shabari Monica Das]: Oh, thank you very much,

Brian, and I'm really delighted to be a guest


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[Shabari Monica Das]: on your podcast.


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[Bryan]: Thank you. Yeah. Um, so tell us a little

bit like, you know, what is world vegan market


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[Bryan]: and, and how did you get started in

your vegan journey to get to that point of


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[Bryan]: creating it?


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[Shabari Monica Das]: Yeah, absolutely. So,

World Vegan Market is an online vegan market,


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[Shabari Monica Das]: which is something that

I started actually during the second lockdown.


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[Shabari Monica Das]: What happened was that

a friend of mine, a school friend in fact,


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[Shabari Monica Das]: who also because I...

I've been selling vegan skincare for the past


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[Shabari Monica Das]: nine years now. During

the beginning of lockdown, it was for six years.


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[Shabari Monica Das]: And pre-pandemic days,

I was doing


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[Bryan]: Yeah.


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[Shabari Monica Das]: a lot of physical events.

And obviously, during the pandemic, we weren't


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[Shabari Monica Das]: able to go out there,

do physical markets and that kind of thing.


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[Shabari Monica Das]: And so this friend of

mine, actually, she had launched a Diwali market


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[Shabari Monica Das]: because she found that

she wanted to buy some presents for Diwali


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[Shabari Monica Das]: but wasn't able to because

she couldn't find an online Diwali market anywhere


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[Shabari Monica Das]: so she decided to create

her own and had asked me to promote that. And


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[Shabari Monica Das]: so we were discussing

about each of our vegan skincare businesses


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[Shabari Monica Das]: because we were both with

the same company as direct sellers. And then


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[Shabari Monica Das]: she suggested, well, why

don't I launch an online vegan market? And


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[Shabari Monica Das]: I said to her, well, do

you mean launch a market within my London vegan


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[Shabari Monica Das]: business network, which

I had been running for several years up until


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[Shabari Monica Das]: that point. and I used

to actually get vegan businesses together and


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[Shabari Monica Das]: we would meet in a vegan

cafe or vegan restaurant to discuss business


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[Shabari Monica Das]: issues. also stopped her

during lockdown


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[Bryan]: Yeah.


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[Shabari Monica Das]: as well. So she suggested,

no, it would be a completely new thing that


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[Shabari Monica Das]: you would do and you would

set up a brand new group and then just invite


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[Shabari Monica Das]: as many people as possible.

So the following day, I didn't think about


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[Shabari Monica Das]: it too much, I just did

it and it just absolutely exploded. So I wanted


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[Shabari Monica Das]: it to be different to

anything else that was out there. I didn't


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[Shabari Monica Das]: just want it to be an

online vegan market where virtual stall holders


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[Shabari Monica Das]: would sell their products

or or services, but I also wanted it to be


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[Shabari Monica Das]: an educational platform

and an entertainment platform as well. So since


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[Shabari Monica Das]: the launch, I've had numerous

guests, you know, talking about a variety of


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[Shabari Monica Das]: different issues from

health, from green living, from all kinds of


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[Shabari Monica Das]: different subjects. I've

also had guest chefs doing live cookery demos


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[Shabari Monica Das]: as well. And also, for

example, International Women's Day. I invited


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[Shabari Monica Das]: guests to actually talk

about their stories so I've had people like


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[Shabari Monica Das]: Kate Strong who is a world

champion,


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[Bryan]: Hmm.


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[Shabari Monica Das]: I've had Wendy Turner-Webster

who is a TV presenter as well and yes I've


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[Shabari Monica Das]: had quite a number of

high-profile guests as well on on my World


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[Shabari Monica Das]: Vegan Market. So I'm now

currently organising my 17th online market,


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[Shabari Monica Das]: which is the World Vegan

Summer Market. So that's running between now


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[Shabari Monica Das]: and the end of August.

So that's how it all started.


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[Bryan]: Mm-hmm.


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[Shabari Monica Das]: My vegan journey, well,

I became a vegan 25 years ago. So that's half


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[Bryan]: Yeah, yeah.


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[Shabari Monica Das]: was I was already vegetarian

for a couple of years and I thought that was


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[Shabari Monica Das]: enough so it wasn't actually

until I attended the Kingston Green Fair and


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[Shabari Monica Das]: there was an animal aid

stall and the person who was manning the stall


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[Shabari Monica Das]: was giving out literature

about the cruelty of the dairy industry and


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[Shabari Monica Das]: the


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[Bryan]: Yeah.


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[Shabari Monica Das]: egg industry and I read

that and I was shocked actually. I thought


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[Shabari Monica Das]: that being a vegan, sorry

being a vegetarian was enough until I read


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[Shabari Monica Das]: that and then not so long

later. I then became vegan and yeah, so I've


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[Shabari Monica Das]: been vegan for 25 years

now.


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[Bryan]: That's awesome. Congratulations. What

a story. Yeah. I mean, it really is powerful


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[Bryan]: when you take that step forward to

give up the meat. But then you see all the


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[Bryan]: little ancillary things. Butter is

hiding everywhere, isn't


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[Shabari Monica Das]: Yes.


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[Bryan]: it? So so you're based in London, right?


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[Shabari Monica Das]: Yes.


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[Bryan]: And so we our podcast probably has

more listeners over here in the United States.


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[Bryan]: Now, I've been fortunate to live over

your way a little bit in the past. So I understand


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[Bryan]: the concept of this like market. So

I mean here we have the farmers markets and


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[Bryan]: stuff, but like this summer market

I just joined your Facebook group. So I'm excited


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[Bryan]: to see how that's gonna take off But

tell us more about this market concept It's


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[Bryan]: like a limited time period and you're

getting certain people in that have Stuff for


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[Bryan]: the season or can you unpack that a

little bit more for us?


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[Shabari Monica Das]: Absolutely. So the summer

market which is running at the moment, so the


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[Shabari Monica Das]: main market activities

are happening on a Facebook group which has


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[Shabari Monica Das]: come in up to 4,000 members

who are potential consumers for my stall holders.


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[Shabari Monica Das]: So you know with the,

I have a variety of different packages. So


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[Shabari Monica Das]: I have a standard advertising

package, which is the bronze package, and then


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[Shabari Monica Das]: also the silver package,

which is the featured advertising package.


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[Shabari Monica Das]: and then the gold package,

which is the extra featured advertising package.


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[Shabari Monica Das]: So depending on what packages

or what package a virtual stallholder wants


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[Shabari Monica Das]: to book, so all stallholders

will have the opportunity to make a promotional


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[Shabari Monica Das]: post. once a day on the

Facebook group where the main market activities


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[Shabari Monica Das]: are happening. They will

also, I will also put together a Meet the Stall


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[Shabari Monica Das]: Holder. post for them

which will be posted on the Facebook group


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[Shabari Monica Das]: and Facebook page and

the World Vegan Market Instagram page and the


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[Shabari Monica Das]: TikTok channel, the World

Vegan Market TikTok channel as well. And then


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[Shabari Monica Das]: also what I do and I know

that nobody else actually does this is that


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[Shabari Monica Das]: I do a rundown of my registered

stall holders where I will talk about each


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[Shabari Monica Das]: of my stall through a

stream yard and then that would be live streamed


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[Shabari Monica Das]: onto the Facebook group

and then if I have if a stall holder has sent


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[Shabari Monica Das]: me a product I'll give

like a little review of that as well and then


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[Shabari Monica Das]: also they'll have an entry

on my website and then I'll put together a


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[Shabari Monica Das]: PDF and also a like a

post giving links to all the clickable links


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[Shabari Monica Das]: to all the stall holders,

what their social media pages are and what


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[Shabari Monica Das]: their websites are. And

then for featured stall holders I will also


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[Shabari Monica Das]: create an album for them

and then I'll do an Instagram story for them


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[Shabari Monica Das]: as well and then I would

create a chat. of so that we can continue regarding


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[Shabari Monica Das]: one of their posts so

that you know they can interact with the potential


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[Shabari Monica Das]: consumers as well directly

and also I have a LinkedIn page, a World Vegan


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[Shabari Monica Das]: Market LinkedIn page so

I will also then put their meet the stall holder


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[Shabari Monica Das]: post on there and then

extra featured stall holders which is the gold


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[Shabari Monica Das]: package. as well as all

those things, they will also get to do an interview


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[Shabari Monica Das]: with me, an hour long

interview and where I bring out their story


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[Shabari Monica Das]: because people just they

love to know you know


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[Bryan]: Yeah.


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[Shabari Monica Das]: what is the brand story?

What is the story behind you know that the


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[Shabari Monica Das]: person because quite often

it's very difficult actually to have that online


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[Shabari Monica Das]: visibility and you know

I've seen websites where I don't know who this


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[Shabari Monica Das]: person is you know okay

you know it's great looking website but who


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[Shabari Monica Das]: is the person behind


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[Bryan]: Mm-hmm.


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[Shabari Monica Das]: the brand? And so that's

where I come in, you know, with stall holders


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[Shabari Monica Das]: who actually book the

gold package. And I show them in their best


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[Shabari Monica Das]: light as well. So, and

you know, they can do after that, after the


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[Shabari Monica Das]: one hour interview with

them, which is live streamed onto the Facebook


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[Shabari Monica Das]: group, they can have a

copy of it and they can


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[Bryan]: Mm-hmm.


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[Shabari Monica Das]: do. what they want for

their own promotion. And that is the key thing.


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[Shabari Monica Das]: That's another thing that

sets me apart from anything that's out there


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[Shabari Monica Das]: as well.


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[Bryan]: Yeah, that's amazing. Yeah, that's

quite the promotional package you got there


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[Bryan]: to help really boost a new brand out

into the world. So how many typically come


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[Bryan]: to each of your markets? And I think

you said that you had about 4,000 and it's


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[Bryan]: growing by leaps and bounds, I'm sure,

right?


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[Shabari Monica Das]: Well, it's coming up to

4,000 members on the Facebook group. And yeah,


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[Shabari Monica Das]: and then coming up to

nearly a thousand on my Instagram page. TikTok


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[Shabari Monica Das]: is very small at the moment,

but you know, it is growing. And the thing


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[Shabari Monica Das]: with TikTok is that it

doesn't... rely on the number of followers


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[Shabari Monica Das]: that you have.


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[Bryan]: Right.


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[Shabari Monica Das]: Anything that you post

on TikTok will be seen by a wider range of


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[Shabari Monica Das]: people as well. And then

also you have different age groups as well.


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[Shabari Monica Das]: So TikTok is the younger

age group, whereas Facebook, they're a little


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[Shabari Monica Das]: bit older. So I'm trying

to sort of capture a variety of different markets


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[Shabari Monica Das]: out there, different audiences.


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[Bryan]: That's right. Yeah, for sure. I still

haven't figured out Snapchat. I think I'm too


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[Bryan]: old for that one. So, but that's


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[Shabari Monica Das]: I think


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[Bryan]: great. Yeah. Tick


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[Shabari Monica Das]: Snapchat is going down

a little bit but I don't want to


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[Bryan]: tock


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[Shabari Monica Das]: say anything


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[Bryan]: for sure.


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[Shabari Monica Das]: because if Snapchat


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[Bryan]: Yeah.


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[Shabari Monica Das]: are watching, well, you

know, they may disagree with me.


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[Bryan]: No, that's great. So what are some

of the successes you've had for some of your


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[Bryan]: clients and like, what is kind of the

vetting process to get into the market?


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[Shabari Monica Das]: Yes, so, you know, obviously,

the my stall holders, anything that they promote


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[Shabari Monica Das]: on the market has to be

vegan. You know, whether it's products or services,


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[Shabari Monica Das]: when I say vegan services,

you know, I'm talking about, you know, they're


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[Shabari Monica Das]: not. promoting things

that go against the vegan philosophy. So, you


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[Shabari Monica Das]: know, services could be,

for example, I've had vegan coaches, vegan


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[Shabari Monica Das]: nutritionists, you know,

anyone with a service-based business but doesn't


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[Shabari Monica Das]: necessarily have any products.

So that's really the... the only stipulation


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[Shabari Monica Das]: that I do have. Obviously,

it's quite a big one.


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[Bryan]: Mm-hmm.


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[Shabari Monica Das]: And then in terms of successes.

I've had a number of successes. I've had somebody


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[Shabari Monica Das]: who's been a regular stall

holder and every time we've done an interview,


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[Shabari Monica Das]: like she's made sales

through our interviews and she's such a wonderful


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[Shabari Monica Das]: person and she has such

a great personality as well and that really


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[Shabari Monica Das]: shone through. even actually

I've had people come to me who are a little


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[Shabari Monica Das]: bit on the shy side and

have been very nervous about doing an interview


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[Shabari Monica Das]: with me and I've said

to you know I've actually put them at ease


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[Shabari Monica Das]: and you know actually

brought out the best side of them and you know


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[Shabari Monica Das]: I've been able to show

them in their best light as well as well so


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[Shabari Monica Das]: you know quite


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[Bryan]: It's awesome.


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[Shabari Monica Das]: often you know people

come to me and they don't really know how to


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[Shabari Monica Das]: promote themselves, they

don't


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[Bryan]: Mm-hmm.


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[Shabari Monica Das]: really, you know, their

camera's shy, and I feel that I've been very


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[Shabari Monica Das]: good at actually doing

that, you know, bringing them out of their


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[Shabari Monica Das]: shells.


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[Bryan]: That's awesome. Yeah, well, that sounds

great. I think, I guess my question is, so


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[Bryan]: how many of them are, you know, you

asked on this side of the pond or your side


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[Bryan]: of the pond? I guess I always, I would

love to try some of the vegan products I'm


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[Bryan]: seeing coming out of Europe and England

area there, but the shipping always kills me.


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[Bryan]: So how do


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[Shabari Monica Das]: Yes.


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[Bryan]: you sort out that dichotomy?


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[Shabari Monica Das]: Well, I mean, like a number

of my stall holders do ship abroad as well.


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[Bryan]: Okay, good.


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[Shabari Monica Das]: And also I've had a number

of virtual stall holders from the US and even


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[Shabari Monica Das]: from Canada as well. And

so that side of things is growing because,


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[Shabari Monica Das]: you know, I really want

it to be truly global and you know I've been


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[Shabari Monica Das]: delighted to actually

have a number of stall holders who are based


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[Shabari Monica Das]: abroad and yeah so no

I've been very pleased about that and you know


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[Shabari Monica Das]: as I mentioned a number

of my stall holders do ship abroad and yeah


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[Shabari Monica Das]: so you know like and more

and more.


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[Bryan]: Becoming cheaper and cheaper for sure,

yeah.


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[Shabari Monica Das]: Yes, yeah, but I know

that there has been an issue with Brexit, but


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[Shabari Monica Das]: hopefully that's sorting

itself out.


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[Bryan]: Yeah.


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[Shabari Monica Das]: you know, like I'm just

so excited about this and the fact that it's


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[Shabari Monica Das]: just growing all the time

and you know the audience is becoming more


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[Shabari Monica Das]: global and growing, you

know, I'm just really excited about the world


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[Shabari Monica Das]: vegan market.


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[Bryan]: Me too, yeah, I love to see this change

coming out from so many smaller entrepreneurs


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[Bryan]: building their business. So what advice

would you give to some of the newer plant-based


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[Bryan]: businesses that are hoping to be in

your market soon? What advice do you have for


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[Bryan]: us?


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[Shabari Monica Das]: Oh, what advice. I would

say that yes, it can be difficult to stand


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[Shabari Monica Das]: out in a crowded marketplace,

particularly online, but the key thing is consistency,


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[Shabari Monica Das]: you know, to go out there,

to promote yourself and, you know, show people


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[Shabari Monica Das]: who you really are, show

that, you know, like a definitely promote your


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[Shabari Monica Das]: values, but also show

your story, your brand story, and people love


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[Shabari Monica Das]: that. They say people

buy from people, and that is really important


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[Shabari Monica Das]: because, yeah, people

just love to know about the entrepreneur's


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[Shabari Monica Das]: background, and just keep

on sharing, be consistent. And yeah, just don't


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[Shabari Monica Das]: be afraid of putting yourself

out there.


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[Bryan]: Yeah, I agree. I couldn't, I couldn't

state that enough consistency and taking that


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[Bryan]: little risk to put yourself out there.

That is some great advice for sure. So what,


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[Bryan]: what do you think is the trick to curating

that strong community? It sounds like you've


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[Bryan]: got some great following and some great

camaraderie going on in your community. What


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[Bryan]: do you think is some of that secret

sauce for others trying to build more community


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[Bryan]: like that?


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[Shabari Monica Das]: Oh, so I would say that

networking is key. And I've done during the


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[Shabari Monica Das]: lockdown, even post lockdown,

I've done a lot of online networking. And I've


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[Shabari Monica Das]: also started going out

there since last year to some of the sort of...


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[Shabari Monica Das]: bigger events as well,

you know, like vegan festivals and plant-based


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[Shabari Monica Das]: shows and that kind of

thing. But yeah, it's just, I feel that, you


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[Shabari Monica Das]: know, if you want to,

if you yourself want to grow a community out


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[Shabari Monica Das]: like this, it's just really

important just to continue networking both


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[Shabari Monica Das]: online


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[Bryan]: Mm-hmm.


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[Shabari Monica Das]: and offline.


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[Bryan]: Yep, again, pushing yourself out of

your comfort zone a little bit at times for


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[Shabari Monica Das]: Yes.


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[Bryan]: sure. So how do people get in touch

with you? How do we connect with you and join


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[Bryan]: your groups and help celebrate the

world vegan market?


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[Shabari Monica Das]: Thank you Brian. So yes,

if you'd like to get in touch with me, please


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[Shabari Monica Das]: email me at info at worldveganmarkets.com

and my Facebook group is on www.facebook.com


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[Shabari Monica Das]: forward slash groups forward

slash worldveganmarket and also my website


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[Shabari Monica Das]: is www.worldveganmarketswithanS.com


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[Bryan]: That is awesome. So we've got your

email, your website, how to get in touch with


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[Bryan]: you on the Facebook group. And I hope

that we can send a whole bunch new people to


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[Bryan]: join the market. And I'm excited. I

just sent my request in. So I look forward


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[Bryan]: to looking through the summer market

here and seeing what we can find together.


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[Bryan]: So.


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[Shabari Monica Das]: Thank you very much, Brian.

It's been an absolute pleasure being a guest


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[Shabari Monica Das]: on your podcast.


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[Bryan]: We really appreciate you jumping in

here and telling us more about this. I'm excited


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[Bryan]: to help bridge the gap between both

America and Europe over there, but also to


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[Bryan]: just continue to celebrate that our

plant-based life is growing worldwide everywhere


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[Bryan]: we look. So that


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[Shabari Monica Das]: Absolutely.


00:21:05,869 --> 00:21:06,269

[Bryan]: is really.


00:21:06,573 --> 00:21:08,328

[Shabari Monica Das]: Here's to a vegan world.


00:21:08,870 --> 00:21:13,235

[Bryan]: That's right, that's right. So that's

all the time that we have for today's podcast


00:21:13,315 --> 00:21:17,380

[Bryan]: on Plant Based on Fire. So thank you

so much, Shabari, for joining us and sharing


00:21:17,400 --> 00:21:21,665

[Bryan]: your insights and experiences with

our community. So until next time, keep the


00:21:21,705 --> 00:21:22,365

[Bryan]: fires burning.


00:21:23,854 --> 00:21:25,356

[Shabari Monica Das]: Thank you very much. Bye

bye.

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