Made with love in London, UK.
"All the latest vegan news & interviews with thought leaders in the vegan movement"
(c) Plant Based News LTD - Reproduction without explicit permission is prohibited. All Rights Reserved.
The former manager of NYC-based eatery Gust Organics has blasted rumours that it shut down because of a decision to stop selling meat.
According to Kiki Adami, it was actually a lawsuit which saw the premises shut it doors in 2015 - and not a fall in profits as previously suspected.
“We went vegan and really did see a loss of profit for about six months,” says Adami in an interview on the Vegan Business Talk podcast this week. “Our clientele who kept us afloat pretty much turned their back on us. Yelp reviewers went to town. I was at war with Yelp for two weeks trying to get reviews taken down from people who were just angry and didn’t eat at the restaurant or try the food. I got hate mail from the website. I got personal Facebook messages calling me a narcissist, saying I was like Hitler and forcing my agenda on people.”
The eatery had been popular with a paleo crowd, who stopped eating there once meat was off the menu.
After six months, however, the tide turned. “The vegan army came to our rescue: we got 7,000 Facebook likes in one night. That was the turning point for the business,” says Adami. “After six months, the numbers started going up, our food costs went down around 30 per cent, our Yelp reviews went up two stars and we started to make more money than we had in five years.”
Despite the upturn, Adami was served with a lawsuit in June 2014, from the investors of Gust Organics. The suit alleged that she had ruined the reputation of the business. She says it was this that resulted in the closure of the restaurant in 2015.
“In the end it was finally dubbed a malicious lawsuit,” says Adami, who now runs her consulting company Veganizer and has successfully veganized more than a dozen restaurants in the US.
“I’ve been quiet till now, but I want to be more vocal about it. Gust Organics didn’t fold because we went vegan, it folded because we were hit with a massive lawsuit and the CEO decided to close it. We were under so much stress and pressure from the investors, but we were making more money as a vegan restaurant than as an omnivore restaurant.”
The full interview on Vegan Business Talk is available on iTunes, Google Play, Stitcher Radio, iHeart Radio and Tunein and at http://veganbusinessmedia.com/vbt-070-interview-with-kiki-adami-of-veganizer/
Some of our articles are published as a team, which means the article has been produced by a collection of people rather than one author. If you have any questions regarding what is written above please contact us.
The adverts were created by Veganuary – the charity that encourages people to try vegan in January – and were crowdfunded by the vegan community. They feature three animals – Rocky the calf, a chick called Little Eric and a naughty but very loveable piglet named Ernie – who urge passengers to read their stories and join thousands of others around the world who choose to eat no animal products at all in January.
Since you're here...
...we’ve got a small favour to ask. Plant Based News is a FREE service that receives millions of views each week across Youtube, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, our weekly newsletter and this website. This takes a lot of our personal time, money and hard work. But we do it because we KNOW it makes a difference. If everyone who reads our reporting, who likes it, helps to support it, our future would be much more secure.
Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this article are prepared in the author's capacity and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of Plant Based News itself.