Founder of Veganizer NYC says selling more plant-based food will save animals’ lives and boost restaurants’ profits.
Kiki Adami founded Veganizer NYC to pursue a very ambitious mission: convince every restaurant in New York City to make at least half of their menu items vegan. While Adami is driven by compassion for animals, her strategy for getting restaurateurs on board focuses on pragmatic matters such as attracting more customers and making more money. But rather than just tell restaurant owners that increasing their vegan options will improve their bottom line, she shows them by helping restaurants host vegan pop-up events. Adami has collaborated with five restaurants so far (including Pagani, Cabalito, Cafe Frida, and Keg 229) by connecting owners with vegan food suppliers and helping chefs veganize their existing menus, sometimes by simply replacing animal products with their vegan equivalents. Adami specifically targets meat-centric restaurants “to show people that if these restaurants can veganize, anything can veganize.” The pop-up events have brought in big crowds, persuading Veganizer’s partner restaurants to keep veganizing—and other restaurants to get with the program.