NEW YORK — Thanks to the overwhelmingly positive response from bodegas and consumers in the Bronx and Brooklyn, Plantega announced today it is expanding its effort to help make plant-based easier to access, every day. Plantega is a community-powered food systems solution that equips New York City’s independent bodegas with the latest plant-based products via a unique retail and food service model. After a successful three-store pilot that launched last fall, the Plantega team today announced it will be expanding into at least 20 bodegas in 2021.
Joining the expanded mission are many of the industry-leading brands that also participated in the pilot, including: JUST Egg, Good Catch, Beyond Meat, Miyoko’s Creamery, No Evil Foods, Follow Your Heart, and Tofurky. The Plantega team also confirmed that Ben & Jerry’s has joined its mission and will be featuring non-dairy flavors in participating stores while also supporting community empowerment projects in New York City. In addition to those announced, Plantega also confirmed plans to onboard additional brands in collaboration with Ace Natural, New York City’s leading distributor for natural and organic ingredients.
Plantega works with bodega owners to customize in-store solutions that make it easier for them to offer neighborhood shoppers everyday plant-based essentials like burgers, eggs, cheese, deli slices, and non-dairy ice cream. Locations featuring the Plantega Grill Menu offer freshly prepared staples like a Chopped Cheese, Sausage, Egg, and Cheese, and Deli Slice Sandwich, all made with 100 percent plant-based ingredients. Plantega was created in November 2020 by Effect Partners and its food solutions incubator which works with a unique coalition of advocates to find innovative solutions to food systems challenges. In January, EFFECT announced the hiring of Nil Zacharias and Erick Castro, two prominent entrepreneurs and influencers in the plant-based movement, to lead the Plantega expansion efforts.
“For too long, the sustainable food movement has felt out of reach and culturally out of context for a large number of New Yorkers. Plantega is on a mission to change that,” said Nil Zacharias, leader of the Plantega initiative. “We use a unique community-powered food systems model that blends the latest food innovations with decentralized, local distribution. We partner with the city’s iconic independent bodegas using a turnkey solution that showcases delicious, high-quality, plant-based brands in formats that feel familiar and accessible to everyone. And we deploy community-led outreach efforts to build awareness and engagement locally,” he added. According to Nil, “Plantega is an all-round ‘win-win’ proposition for plant-based brands, local businesses, and New Yorkers who are hungry for better food choices at their local bodega.”
“Everyone should have the opportunity to nourish their bodies with food that’s good for their health and good for the planet. Plantega is working to make this possible. We’re thrilled to be a partner in Plantega’s continued initiative in bringing delicious, affordable plant-based foods to even more New York communities this year,” said Josh Tetrick, co-founder and CEO of Eat Just.
Plantega Opens in Four New Locations This Month, Expands Product Offering
Starting today, Plantega’s 4 new bodegas are now offering plant-based products, for a total of 7 locations. It plans to double locations by mid-summer. Plantega’s open locations are:
- Marinello’s Gourmet Deli at 114 Wyckoff Ave; Brooklyn, NY 11237
- 3rd Ave Deli and Grocery at 527 3rd Ave New York, NY 10016
- Sammy Gourmet Deli 169-03 Jamaica Ave, Queens, NY 11432
- Silver Moon Deli at 3840 Broadway New York, NY 10032
- 181 Gourmet Deli at 815 West 181 st New York, NY 10033
- “My Deli” at 1201 Castle Hill; Bronx, New York 10462
- Don Poli Meat Market at 3143 Fulton St; Brooklyn, New York 11208
In addition, Plantega will also be launching unique collaborations with mission-aligned chefs, local farms, and community organizations to bring more offerings to the bodegas and its patrons/customers.
“At Gathered Foods, we are on a mission to create positive change in the seafood marketplace and want consumers across the globe to have access to great-tasting plant-based products,” said Christine Mei, CEO of Gathered Foods, makers of Good Catch. “We’re incredibly inspired by the work that Plantega is doing and are thrilled to have a Good Catch tuna melt on deli menus in New York.”
“We’re honored to partner with Plantega as part of our combined goal to reinvent the food system and improve access to nutritious options that benefit the health of all living beings and the planet,” said Miyoko Schinner, founder and CEO of Miyoko’s Creamery. “For years, I’ve said that when we bring people to the table, they’ll experience how delicious vegan food can be and will come back for more. Plantega is a ground-breaking program in helping to realize this goal of bringing plant-based foods to all and we’re delighted offerings will include our butters and cheeses made from real plant milks.”
To learn more about Plantega visit www.eatplantega.com or follow @eatplantega on Instagram and Facebook. Join our community and conversation by using #eatplantega or #grabsomegoodstuff or sign-up for special deals by joining the VIP community by texting PLANTEGA to 474747.
About EFFECT Partners
EFFECT Partners builds climate solutions with food and entertainment partners. Founded originally as a non-profit called Concerts for the Environment in 1990, EFFECT has served as strategic advisors to some of the world’s biggest bands and brands including U2, Dave Matthews Band, Live Nation, Apple, and P&G. EFFECT launched a new food solutions incubator in 2020 in order to invent, fund, launch and support new concepts and organizations that tackle systemic challenges found at the intersection of food and climate justice. EFFECT is a Minneapolis-based General Benefit Corporation pursuing B-Corp Certification.