Veganism is hitting the mainstream and leading the way as the future in business—especially in the realm of restaurants and fast food.

Purchasing a vegan franchise is now widely available around the globe. If you are interested in purchasing a franchise, it would be wise to follow the trends to set yourself up for a successful venture.

Why Vegan?

The rise in sales of plant-based foods has resulted in what is presently a $3 billion industry. The numbers are showing that consumers are becoming more interested in plant-based foods. Although only a small percentage of people identify as vegans, many are adopting diets that are largely focused on plant-based proteins. Light being shed on the environmental impacts of raising livestock has led households to integrating “Meatless Mondays” into their weekly routines to help do their part in reducing their carbon footprint with their diet. In addition to their diet, they are also evaluating the origins of their fashion choices, their body care products and other realms of their lives that may be causing harm to animals in the process.

The ease and convenience of fast food appeals to Americans and their busy schedules. If more vegan options were available, entrepreneurs may be able to sway the market away from fast food options that contribute to the obesity epidemic and poor business practices. Providing communities that live in food deserts with vegan companies that practice corporate social responsibility can also aid in setting a new standard for what we call “business as usual.” By investing in a vegan franchise you may just be playing a role in a major paradigm shift in the western world.

Weigh Your Options

When considering purchasing a franchise, you must do your due diligence to ensure that you are making a sound business decision. There are some companies that are well-known that offer brands you trust. For example, the food brand Amy’s has offered organic, non-GMO, and vegan foods in prepackaged frozen form for over 25 years. They take their food quality very seriously and have recently taken on the fast food industry by opening a flagship store in California.

It doesn’t necessarily have to be a restaurant either. There are now vegan vending machines that you can franchise as well. The great part about being a business owner is choosing your own adventure—franchises just give you a functioning outline of a tested and successful business model. Whether you invest in a vending machine or a restaurant, you are are given full ownership of that business.

Do the background research of whichever company you are interested in purchasing a piece of. Although vegan companies may be interested in plant-based foods, it does not mean all of their business practices are as clean as their food sounds. Look into their products’ ingredients and their sources to ensure that you are backing a company that you can be proud of owning a share of. There are pros and cons to owning a franchise. Although you may make a profit, if the overall brand receives bad publicity for poor business practices, all of the stores under their umbrella will suffer. Think of doing your research as insurance for your future.

Are You Franchise Ready?

With over 800,000 franchise opportunities to choose from, it is important to choose the right franchise for you. Take a moment to do an inventory of your level of interest in participation in the business, your finances, and what skills you can offer to ensure the success of your branch. There are no right parameters for the perfect franchise owner. Depending on your wants, needs, and expectations, owning a franchise can look differently from person to person.

If you are financially confident in your investment and build a solid team, it is possible that you could be an absent owner, if you so choose. If you are taking a big financial risk by diving into the vegan franchise industry in the belief that veggie burgers will dominate the fast food industry, you may want to participate as a full-time owner-operator to keep an eye on your investments. Be prepared to start considering your next franchise purchase if your first venture goes well. You will likely be tempted to continue to grow your business.

The competition is getting fierce among companies that are attempting to create the most meat-like plant-based burger. Some of the most successful business owners invested early into the uprise of their industry—establishing a strong business model has given them the return on investment they were hoping for. The vegan food industry is only going to continue to grow and evolve. If you feel strongly about providing plant-based foods to the masses, you may feel a great reward with setting on this business venture. If buying a vegan franchise aligns with your ethics and career goals, perhaps you should began the path to your investment today.

By Noah Rue

About the author

Noah Rue is a writer, a digital nomad, an ESL teacher, and an all around good dude, if he doesn’t say so himself.