Kind Earth opened on July 12th 2019 as Llanelli, indeed Wales, first Vegan Supermarket. To cut a long story short, before you read on, without extra investment the stark reality is that Kind Earth will, most likely, not be able to survive long enough, in a market controlled by large organisations, to make the difference I hope it can. I’m hoping you feel this is a business that deserves a little of your time and, hopefully, money.
WHAT IS KIND EARTH ALL ABOUT?
The vision of the shop in its conception was to offer people a shopping experience where they know that they are not only able to shop safe in the knowledge that all the produce is vegan but also where they can buy good quality local, organic, gluten free and minimal waste produce without supporting the activities of the large retailers and manufacturers. In addition to, and alongside, the value added to the shopping experience offered by these ranges Kind Earth is committed to improving the local and global community both socially, environmentally and ecologically. Conducting due diligence on all suppliers, holding monthly community workshops, involvement in organising local litter picks, offering food donations to help local people and TerraCycle schemes are all strategies currently being utilised to ensure that Kind Earth is the place to #shoplovingly
THE INSPIRATION BEHIND KIND EARTH
If we are going to look after, indeed save, our planet and all the creatures living on it then businesses must act more ethically and I am a firm believer that committing to the well being of all of your stakeholders is not only the way businesses should be operating but financially can only benefit if we stop trying to maximise profits in the short term. Yes I need to break even, yes I need to pay myself a wage, but I want my ethics to be the reason for that not driven by it. If, ultimately, Kind Earth becomes profitable that profit can help make the world a better place again. How much money does one man and his family need after all?
Kind Earth is about community, I know what I want, need, and believe in, but I am here to provide for, and listen to, you on your journey through life's complexities and let’s be honest reducing our waste, and offsetting our carbon footprint whilst also trying not to fund animal cruelty and exploitation, isn’t easy. So yes you will be able to call in, or message me, so we can talk and I can hear your ideas. We can, and will, do this together.
THE MAN BEHIND THE VISION AND INSPIRATION
I’m Matt and I like hiding behind body brushes but apart from that I have a background as a business studies lecturer and one of the driving forces behind starting Kind Earth, my passion for veganism aside, was to be able to practice what I have spent so much time preaching for the last 15 years. It is these beliefs that drive the vision and inspiration behind Kind Earth and, with the amazing support from my family, leave the comfort of a safe and well paid career. I recently won the Carmarthenshire Local Hero Award for commitment to the environment but have aspirations to do so much more.
BUT WAIT YOU HAVE ALREADY STARTED THE BUSINESS?
Indeed I have but it is clear that in order to survive and grow as a business and to allow my customers to continue to #shoplovingly I need to offer more zero waste options, and reach a wider geographic base, so as a business driven by ethics and improving the local and global community I need to implement changes to the model now that were initially long term aims or not even part of the plan. Talking to my customers, recognising just how many of my products include single use plastic packaging, even from truly ethical suppliers, and sadly just walking in my local area or watching the news has made it starkly clear that, undeniably, if we don’t all act now there, literally, will be no time like the present sooner than any of us can predict. Single waste plastic is very hard to avoid, and I will remain an exclusively vegan outlet, but wherever alternatives can be used then it is surely mine, and your duty, to ensure we do so.
SO THAT’S WHAT MY MONEY WILL PAY FOR?
As with any aspiring young business there is an element of risk and Kind Earth has certainly not performed in the first 3 months, sales wise, as I would have liked, or forecasted, but I am working hard to remedy this and reach out to my target market. In just the next 4 weeks I will have a website going live for online ordering which will give me a potential market of millions rather than hundreds of thousands. I appreciate this is the 21st century and online shopping is the in thing but I avoided it initially because of my concern about carbon footprint. This is still a concern but I will do everything I can to offset the impact such as working with some amazing community projects locally to plant more trees along with national charities such as the Woodland Trust. Other marketing strategies I am employing are getting out in the local community with stalls at Christmas, food and craft fairs and distributing more flyers to geographic areas where the majority of my target market are situated as well as continuing with my social media presence. As mentioned already one of the main reasons I am looking for donations is to accelerate my plans to offer zero waste options is because it is what my customers have told me they want and I certainly hope that listening to those customers, as I do all my community, will be, ultimately, what makes the business a success. As with any business decision this investment carries an element of risk but ultimately I feel the extra working capital your donations will create, and customers I can attract with the new initiatives, will be vital in helping me navigate my first year in business and allow me then to help the local and global community for many years to come.
WHAT ELSE CAN I GET FOR MY MONEY?
Hopefully the knowledge that your money is going to help sustain such a business as Kind Earth is as good a reason as any to donate a pound or two but I will reward all pledges, from £1 upwards, with your name on a roll of honour in store and offer my eternal love and gratitude. If the motivation of helping Kind Earth survive and fulfil its mission to improve the world is not enough and you wish to receive a tangible reward (fair enough) please contact me before, or after, donating and I will let you know what you can get for your money with rewards on offer for donations from £30 (bee bombs) to £2500 (A Kind Earth Partner) and including shelving sponsorship, jute bags, holistic therapies, food and zero waste boxes, and the pleasure of my company for a talk to the group/business of your choice. I will also, for anybody, who requests it, or follows on social media, offer regular updates on the progress of the shop.
BUT, BUT, BUT……
Yes I fully understand you probably have a million other questions or want to know more about the business and I want to be completely transparent so please ask away or use my social media pages on facebook, instagram or twitter to find out more about the business.
Every penny you donate goes towards the future of Kind Earth, the planet and all the creatures on it.
It’s time for us all to #shoplovingly, I thank you for your time and money, and I look forward to the journey we are going on together….
- Matthew Williams
- Jason Dickinson
- Emyr Evans
- Valeh Warrey
- Ed Strain
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