Brunswick St has already established itself as a vegan hotspot with the Vegie Bar, Yong Green Food, Madame K's, Lord of the Fries and Berrissimo all clustered just south of Alexandra Parade. What better spot to set up the first bricks-and-mortar outlet of the Cruelty Free Shop?
The Cruelty Free Shop opens officially for business tomorrow, Saturday February 21, but we were lucky to get a sneak peek at their launch. Inside we found neat white shelves stacked with hundreds, if not thousands, of vegan groceries.
Fridges nearly groaned with the weight of vegan cheeses, icecreams, mock meats and frozen snacks like bao and spring rolls. Shelves were lined with convenience meals stocks and soups, including a few unfamiliar brands and products (ready-made coconut bacon! sample packs of Tartex!). Amongst the puddings, cake mixes and sweet flavoured milks I was delighted to discover a ready source of soy condensed milk.
There's stuff for vegan minds and bodies as well as their digestive systems - books, cosmetics and skin care, shoes, wallets and bags. I'm feeling a twinge of regret over the vegan leather wallet I bought a couple of months ago, 'cause these ones are real cute.
The Cruelty Free Shop aims to stock products that are intentionally vegan, and often made by vegan companies. It's not a place to source bulk biodegradable detergent or dried legumes - instead it's all about the luxury goods that confirm vegans aren't missing out on anything.
The Cruelty Free Shop
385 Brunswick St, Fitzroy
Accessilibility: I think the entry was flat, if a little narrow. Floors inside are flat and corridors should be clear and moderately wide when not crammed with people at launch time. Some stock is located on rather high shelves.