Vegan Restaurant Forced To Relocate After Landowner Blasts Sugar Content Of Donuts 'A lot of people have asked how you can help and the support has been overwhelming' - Media Credit: Offbeet Food

Vegan Restaurant Forced To Relocate After Landowner Blasts Sugar Content Of Donuts

'The way they have been marketed in recent weeks goes against our core values around health and wellbeing'

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2 Minutes Read

A vegan restaurant is being forced to relocate after the landowner has criticized the sugar content of its donuts.

Offbeet Food, located on Sunnyfields Farm near Southampton, has been given six months to leave the premises. 

Vegan donuts

The eatery has been running as a takeaway deli service during the UK’s third lockdown. It launched vegan donuts as a way to increase its product offering – and has witnessed customers queuing outside for more than an hour to buy the treats. 

Despite the roaring success, landowners Barker-Mill Estates slammed the business move. 

According to reports, the company wrote Offbeet a letter, stating ‘sugar of any form causes obesity’. Then, it requested an analysis of sugar content for each donut the restaurant offers.

The news has garnered global media attention.

‘A ludicrous exercise’

Offbeet owner Peter Axworthy said: “The donuts change every week with new flavors. So, we would have had to do them all again, measure them and then bin them all.

“It just would have been a ludicrous exercise just to confirm that yes, donuts have sugar in them… We already knew that…

“They’re a bit healthier anyway because they’re homemade and not processed. This is not a five-doughnuts-for-99p supermarket affair. We were creating high-quality treats. 

“The day we reopened in lockdown, it seemed like everyone had turned up for a donut and nothing else — the 13 doughnuts we made went in about 30 minutes.”

‘Goes against our core values’

According to The Times, a representative for Longdown Management, which manages the estates, said: “We’re constantly reviewing the occupiers across our premises to ensure they are aligned with our values.

“While we recognize the donuts Offbeet sells are a luxury treat, the way they have been marketed in recent weeks goes against our core values around health and wellbeing.”

New vegan restaurant

Since the news broke out, a crowdfunding page has launched to help the eatery pay for its relocation. At the time of writing, nearly £1,000 has been raised from 43 donors. 

“A lovely customer of ours set up a Go Fund Me page to help us with the costs of moving and restarting at a new venue,” Offbeet wrote.

“This was such a surprise and an incredible gesture. The idea of crowdfunding has crossed our minds in the past. But, we’ve always felt a bit uneasy about asking for help. 

“A lot of people have asked how you can help and the support has been overwhelming. A kind message, spreading the word or helping keeping an eye out for vacant venues is more than we could have imagined for.”

You can help raise funds for Offbeet Food here

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The Author

Liam Gilliver

Liam is the former Deputy Editor of Plant Based News. He has written for The Independent, Huffington Post, Attitude Magazine, and more. He is also the author of 'We're Worried About Him'.

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sheila meadows
sheila meadows
1 year ago

How ridiculous! Evicting good tenants over ingredients in doughnuts. They have more money than sense! What is the point ? They are still going to sell the same dough only further away

geoff russell
geoff russell
1 year ago

The point is that the land owner is exercising their right to select tenants who they feel match their ethics. This article makes no mention of how the restaurant was marketing the donuts, although it quotes the landowner saying that the marketing was a key reason for their eviction.

Stella K
Stella K
1 year ago
Reply to  geoff russell

This article provides much more detail: https://www.advertiserandtimes.co.uk/offbeet-doughnuts
My guess is that the other tenant’s shop/restaurant is larger and non-vegan.

Jennifer scrimshaw
Jennifer scrimshaw
1 year ago

We all know that Colours preservatives And sweeteners are far more dangerous have the in a bit of sugar It just looks like they’re being picked on For doing something different and making a success of it

TW
TW
1 year ago

Sounds like the Vegan Restaurant said they would conform with their landlords views on health and wellbeing, which is totally at the landlords discretion.

I’m sure there is more to this story because the entire story is not believable. Unless the landlord wanted the Vegan restaurant out for some other reason he used the doughnuts to evict the restaurant.

Moral of the story. Marxism sucks and free market capitalism is a far superior governmental system. Everyone who lives in America should be fighting for freedom and liberty because I’m sure this vegan restaurant owner would love to live in America.

I say this because here in America the tenant could sue the landlord for breach of contract if that is in fact what happened.

Ryanocerous
Ryanocerous
1 year ago
Reply to  TW

Marxism? we are run by the the Conservatives, who are pretty far from Marxists, you absolute donut.

TW
TW
1 year ago
Reply to  Ryanocerous

I’ve never been called a donut – that’s funny. I was talking about the landlord who is behaving like a Marxist. My comment on Marxism vs. Capitalism was from an ideological point of view as I have no idea what form of government you living under. However, if your government is run by Conservatives then the tenant should be able to challenge the landlords eviction as a breach of contract.

The story is beyond belief so I think we are not working with all the facts in this story. I do this for a living so have a good handle on the world of landlord tenant issues.

What kind of donut?

Michele L Wilke
Michele L Wilke
1 year ago

It’s a toss up right? I mean, some vegans are nutrition-conscious, but in my experience, there are many more junk food vegans who are animal welfare or environmental vegans. I don’t understand the eviction simply because the word DONUT conjures up decadence, so that was a pretty odd decision on the part of the landlords. HOWEVER, it would be awesome to see more vegan shift towards whole plant foods, and then this kind of thing would never happen. Just food for thought.

Darrell Sawczuk
Darrell Sawczuk
1 year ago

One could say donuts are Hole Food Plant Based … 😛

Sarah Santos
Sarah Santos
1 year ago

This is ridiculous. We have 3 donut places in town that have vegan options and are doing great. We also have a vegan cinnamon bun place that sells only vegan cinnamon buns. Hopefully OFFBEAT comes out of this stronger than ever.

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