A new event, called Memphis Vegan Festival, took place in Fourth Bluff Park in Tennessee this week. The festival was designed to promote healthy eating in the Mid-South.
The festival showcased 15 plant-based food vendors, two vegan food trucks, 25 lifestyle vendors, and live music.
Food options included vegan lobster, chicken and waffles, cinnamon scrolls, cupcakes, tacos, ice cream, and burgers, among other dishes.
Vegan clothing and accessories, as well as cruelty-free health and beauty products, were also available.
The free event attracted hundreds of attendees, including those who eat meat.
Events Coordinator Cynthia Daniels wrote on the festival’s Facebook page: “Every food vendor had a line at 12:00 pm! Each line was an hour long wait and people were proud to be there.”
She continued: “Kudos to all of the vegan chefs and restaurants that took a chance on this inaugural event and SOLD OUT of everything! I’m excited to see your brands grow with new followers.”
Daniels added that there has already been an influx of interest for next year’s vegan festival.
Veganism In Tennessee
Google Trends data shows that since 2004, interest in veganism has soared in Tennessee, especially in Nashville.
More events are emerging to cater to shifting consumer interests. ScruffyCity VeganFest was launched to support East Tennessee’s vegan scene. Its last festival, which was also zero-waste, featured more than 50 plant-based businesses.
Earlier this year, the ‘world’s biggest’ vegan food chain, Copper Branch, opened a store in Nashville.
Even the state’s athletes are looking toward animal-free food. In 2017, around 10 football players from the Tennessee Titans adopted a plant-based diet.
The second Memphis Vegan Festival will take place at Shelby Farms on June 18, 2022.