Month: August 2020

So-called “Fake” Leather is Real Deal

Washington (GGM) Analysis | August 27, 2020 by Sarah J. Kings

The freezer section of your local grocery store isn’t the only thing going vegan. The vegan leather industry- often misbranded as ‘fake leather’- is booming right now, and the world of fashion is getting a much-needed makeover! Sustainability and ethics have moved to the forefront of consumer consciousness, and brands are racing to be first in line to meet the high demand.

Twitter- @watsonandwolfe

Hill Report spoke with Helen Farr-Leander, CEO of the Peta approved brand Watson & Wolfe, about vegan leather and the future of eco-friendly fashion. Watson & Wolfe is a luxury vegan leather & accessories brand that offers ethical fashion alternatives. When asked about the future of ‘fake,’ Farr-Leander had this to say. “Leather alternatives are already attracting more attention, and with each new innovation, they are reducing impact and increasing sustainability. Within five years, we will see existing leather goods brands looking at these materials, not only to reduce their own impact but to attract new customers.” And she’s not wrong.

According to a recent study conducted by Infinium Global Research, the vegan leather industry will be worth  $89.6 billion by 2025. With the rise of veganism and consumer ethics, many are looking to vegan leather to resolve animal cruelty and carbon emissions problems. This is why it is no surprise that people are looking to change assumptions about what ‘fake’ leather is and isn’t. Jonathan Ohayon, Founder and CEO of the F.A.K.E. Movement, is rebranding the word to stand for Fashion for the Animal Kingdom and Environment. When interviewed he told Hill Report, “I created the F.A.K.E. movement, so we can proudly wear a  real vegan alternative.” 

Instagram- @fakemovement 

Farr-Leander echoed this sentiment by saying, “I would encourage those people to look at these materials objectively. The newer leather alternatives are materials in their own right, just like cotton or animal leather, with their own unique qualities and textures.” Vegan leather is the future and is the boost and innovation that the textile industry needs to combat the climate crisis. To quote Farr-Leander, “there is nothing ‘fake’ about [vegan leathers], they are future materials.” ‘Fake’ leather is the real deal!

Tl:dr

  •  Sustainability and ethics have moved to the forefront of consumer consciousness
  • Vegan leather industry- often misbranded as ‘fake leather’- is booming
  • According to Infinium Global Research, the vegan leather industry will be worth  $89.6 billion by 2025
  • Vegan leather is the future of the textile industry 

© Copyright 2018 – 2020. ALL Rights Reserved.

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US Vegan Climate Index Isn’t “Shackled to The Past”

Washington (GGM) Analysis | August 27, 2020 by Sarah J. Kings

European investing platform Beyond Investing– no relation to Beyond Meat– celebrated the second ‘birthday’ of its US Vegan Climate Index this summer. As the world’s first exchange-traded fund (ETF) focused on veganism and environmentalism, the US Climate Index (VEGAN) should be a ticker on your investor watchlist.  

Twitter- @BeyondInvest

The US Climate Index avoids companies and business models that pose a threat to the environment.  This means that they do not support animal exploitation or unethical business. In a press release published on June 16, 2020, Beyond Investing reported, “over its two-year live history, VEGAN has outperformed the S&P 500 Index…on a price return basis of 5.93%.” VEGAN outperforming the S&P 500 means big things for Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) funds. 

When questioned about the future of ESG investing, Claire Smith, Beyond Investing CEO, shared some poignant thoughts with The Hill Report. “ESG investing will become the primary driver for investment. Investors are holding companies to higher standards and questioning the viability of unethical and polluting business models. It represents the opportunity to invest for the future that you want to see, as opposed to keeping your money shackled to the past.”

Instagram- @beyond_animal

With a boom of awareness of veganism and sustainability in the US, and the success of companies like Beyond Meat and Tesla, new Initial Public Offerings (IPOs) are sure to be popping up. Investors in the US Climate Index can rest assured that each new IPO will be properly screened and vetted before being added to the fund. Smith said that she anticipates “more IPOs of ethical plant-based and cruelty-free food and lifestyle product companies.” She looks forward “to including them in our US Vegan Climate Index as replacements for those damaging companies that fail our screens.” As the demand for ethical investing soars higher, people looking to the stock market should consider the US Vegan Climate Index. 

Tl;dr

  • European investing platform Beyond Investing celebrates two years of the US Vegan Climate Index
  • As the world’s first exchange-traded fund (ETF),  US Climate Index (VEGAN) is a ticker to watch
  • VEGAN has outperformed the S&P 500
  • CEO, Claire Smith predicts that more IPOs of ethical plant-based and cruelty-free food and lifestyle product companies are on the rise 
  • US Climate Index screens companies to ensure that only ethical businesses are added to the fund

© Copyright 2018 – 2020. ALL Rights Reserved.

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Top 3 Elite Standouts in EVs

Washington (GGM) Analysis | August 26, 2020 by Sarah J. Kings

Vegan and sustainable are the new ‘it words’ in luxury right now. Fashion brands are phasing out fur and animal leather left and right, and high profile celebrities like Leonardo DiCaprio and Gisele Bundchen are calling for climate change action every day. Brands are listening and developing product lines that meet the demands of the growing population of socially conscious consumers. The automotive industry is no different. 

Twitter- @AmberWCC

Luxury car companies are trying to top one another in EV development and the inclusion of other sustainable features in their latest models. Here are the top three luxury automakers and vehicles that are standouts in vegan and sustainable EVs. 

2020 Tesla Model 3- Over the last decade, Elon Musk has worked every angle to get his fully electric brand on the road. In 2020, when people think of EVs and luxury, they undoubtedly think of Tesla. This sexy 5-seater has 322 miles of range and can go from 0-60 mph in 3.2 seconds. Boasting a 15 inch touch screen display with features like in-car video games, this electric vehicle will never fail to impress. 

2021 Lexus UX300e- Lexus delivers a classic and contemporary crossover in the development of the UX300e. The crossover uses a 54.3-kWh lithium-ion battery, and has a driving range of 248 miles. Lexus offers a vegan leather interior and the ability to control smart features through an app on your phone. The UX300e is currently available in Europe and Asia only, providing an added layer of exclusivity and allure.

2021 BMW iNext- Said to be available in 2021, this is an elite concept vehicle unlike any you have ever seen. The modern interior styling– inspired by the theme “boutique hotel”– is unmatched. With responsive tech woven into the fabric of the seats-that allows users to change the music or by interacting with textile surfaces in the car- stepping inside of one will feel like being transported to the future! BMW’s sleek Shy Technology is an element like no other— it is a must-see. The iNext is said to have 360 miles of range on a single charge. Making this an unmatchable elite driving experience. 

Twitter- @LelaHo6

If you are looking to the world of luxury to rev up your sustainable lifestyle, look to Tesla, Lexus, and BMW. Their newest EVs and breakthroughs in technology are the wave of the future!

© Copyright 2018 – 2020. ALL Rights Reserved.

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How to Use Your ‘Mom Status’ to Help Mother Nature

Washington (GGM) Analysis | August 25, 2020 by Sarah J. Kings

Think back to your childhood. If you ever had a problem that you couldn’t resolve yourself, who did you ask for help? Chances are, the answer is your mom. Had a pull in your ballet tights five minutes before your recital started? She had you covered with a spritz of hairspray. Couldn’t find your soccer cleats? Hall closet on the left next to the blue duffel bag no hesitation. Tiffany Saunders told everyone that you stuffed your bra in the seventh grade? She called her mom, and the rumor mill ended. Done. 

It’s ingrained in us from a young age— if you have a problem and need something done about it fast, ask a Mom. That’s why it is no surprise that ‘Mom’s in Movements’ make major headway. Whether it’s the hundreds of thousands of nutritious meals provided by Moms Against Poverty, the blockage of 3 million illegal gun sales due in part to Moms Demand Action, or the human shield provided to Black Lives Matter protesters in Oregon by the Wall of Moms— passionate mothers make a difference.

Twitter- @QCDCNY

These three celebrity moms are making big waves in sustainability and preserving the environment. Hear what they have been saying about protecting mother nature and preparing the planet for the next generation. You will definitely feel inspired!

Anne Hathaway The Les Misérables actress is more than just a Hollywood star. She is an activist, NYU graduate, and a Goodwill Ambassador of the United Nations. In an interview with InStyle, Hathaway explained how she is raising a ‘Zero Waste’ family. Anne said of the eco-friendly switch, “While working on The Hustle, I noticed disposable coffee cups, plastic water bottles, idling trucks, and food waste. When I finished the film, my family and I went zero waste.” 

Hilary Duff Mother of two little ones, this Lizzy McGuire actress was on the cover of the “Mother Earth” issue  published by Parents magazine. She regularly uses social media to share tips that any family can use to help combat the climate crisis. Of these seemingly small steps, she said, “at first, saving the environment sounds scary and overwhelming, but as we implement new rules, it becomes easier and easier.”

Instagram- @hilaryduff

Alicia Silverstone Author of The Kind Diet, this star is far from Clueless. Long-time plant-based mamma and activist, Silverstone makes her opinions known about climate action. In an interview with VegNews she stated, “our rapidly growing dependence on animals as a food source is one of the greatest threats to the climate.” She too regularly takes to social media to share eco-friendly recipes and tips. 

If you are feeling empowered to use your ‘mom status’ to make positive changes, follow these stars on Instagram, or get involved in the movement by visiting Mothers Out Front.  Mothers Out Front is dedicated to impacting the way the world responds to climate change. They provide resources for families and lobby for green initiatives. Right now, they are fighting for electric school buses for children. Who knows what they could accomplish with your help!

© Copyright 2018 – 2020. ALL Rights Reserved.

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Why You Should Pay Attention to Beyond Meat

Washington (GGM) Analysis | August 21, 2020 by Sarah J. Kings

Beyond Meat is a US-based vegan alternative meat company that focuses on sustainability and animal welfare. They are the makers of the beet juice burger that “bleeds” like beef. With 20 grams of protein per serving, this new backyard barbecue staple does more than just drip red juices on the grill.

In May of 2019, when Beyond Meat first became publicly traded, the market exploded with excitement. According to Forbes, the stock closed that day at a 43% increase. People around the country finally saw what CEO Ethan Brown knew all along— alternative meat is an industry that will change the world. 

Instagram – @beyondmeat

Despite the plummet that most traded companies felt during the months of quarantine, in May of 2020, Beyond’s share values reportedly grew 82%. And the company continued to grow and forge deals to further their infiltration into the lives of average people. 

On August 4th, Beyond reported a net loss of a whopping $10.2 million— but don’t let the word ‘loss’ fool you.  Brown has made it clear that Beyond will continue to push through these unprecedented times and provide an affordable, more sustainable, and healthier plant-based alternative to beef.  During the second quarter, Beyond partnered with megastores Target and Walmart, making this vegan burger more accessible than ever. The partnership helped the company reach $113.3 million in net sales.

Beyond Meat is already at T.G.I.Friday’s, Dunkin’, and Carl’s Junior, and each partnership helped launch the company’s success further.  On August 12th, Aramark announced that they, too, will be partnering with Beyond. As one of the largest food providers in the US, this is a big deal that will positively impact Beyond’s stock in the future. When America ‘reopens’, and people return to schools, college campuses’, and stadiums Beyond will be there— and you can count on stock values to reflect that.

Twitter – @Ceo_topcvstudio

Tl;dr

  • Beyond Meat is an alternative meat company that focuses on sustainability and animal welfare
  • Beyond stock closed at a 43% increase on its first day on the market
  • May of 2020, Beyond’s share values reportedly grew 82%
  • Despite a reported a net loss of $10.2 million, Beyond made relationships with Target & Walmart during quarantine 
  • The company reach $113.3 million in net sales in Q2
  • On August 12th, Aramark announced a partnership with Beyond
  • Expect to see Beyond Meat in schools, college campuses’, & stadiums
  • When America ‘reopens’, the stock value will increase

© Copyright 2018 – 2020. ALL Rights Reserved.

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No Protein Problems Here — 10 Vegan Athletes Crushing It!

Washington (GGM) Analysis | August 20, 2020 by Sarah J. Kings

There has been a significant boom in the accessibility and inclusivity of veganism over the last decade. We are in the midst of a culture shift. The same people who once asked, but where do you get your protein from, are now filling their shopping carts with brands like Gardien, Beyond Meat, and Impossible. Athletes all over the globe are dispelling myths that paint vegans as anemic weaklings suffering from malnutrition. Below are just ten of the world’s vegan athletes who are crushing it in their field. 

Twitter – @Kaepernick7

  • Colin Kaepernick – Activist & Former NFL Quarterback
  • Tia Blanco – Pro-Surfer to Represent the USA in the 2021 Summer Olympics
  • Kyrie Irving – Brooklyn Nets Point Guard
  • Hannah Teter – Snowboarder & Olympic Gold Medalist
  • Serena & Venus Williams – World-renowned Tennis Legends
  • Novak Djokovic – 5 Time Wimbledon Champion
  • Ed Templeton – Professional Skateboarder
  • Austin Aries – Professional Wrestler
  • Kendrick Farris – Olympic Powerlifter

With each gold medal placed on a vegan athlete’s shoulders, more and more people are seeing the truth about plant-based diets.  By avoiding animal products, people can take control of many of the problems facing the world today.  A vegan diet saves the lives of countless animals, protects the environment, and promotes overall health.  This simple dietary and lifestyle change can lower your chances of heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and certain cancers. It can also drastically reduce greenhouse gas emissions as well as water and land usage.  A 2016 study released by the University of Oxford found that the planet’s food-related emissions would drop by 70 percent if the world were to go vegan.

Instagram – @vegan_truthbomb

Whether it is the 150 billion animals that are killed each year in ‘animal agriculture’, or your own personal health that has started you on your plant-based mission, we can all agree that Mother Nature will benefit from this change. Look to these athletic legends for inspiration on your path towards veganism.  Who knows, maybe you will be the next vegan athlete to win a gold medal at the Olympics!

Come back every Thursday to learn more about the role veganism plays in combating climate change!

© Copyright 2018 – 2020. ALL Rights Reserved.

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2021 Mustang Mach-E & Ford Promise Plan

Washington (GGM) Analysis | August 19, 2020 by Sarah J. Kings

Many eco-conscious consumers are looking to electric vehicles, EVs, to help combat the climate crisis. EV’s are responsible for much lower emissions than their gas-powered counterparts, and they cost less overall to maintain and drive. Still, with starting prices ranging from $29,000 to upwards of $100,000- depending on the make and model- some people may be hesitant to switch to electric as economic concerns grow.

On July 29th, Ford announced the start of the Ford Promise plan. Under this new initiative, any new financed Ford can be returned without penalty to the buyer, if the buyer loses their job within one year of purchase.  Ford is the only major automotive company making this type of commitment to its customers. With this added safety net, getting an EV is more in reach for the average consumer than ever.

Instagram – @wasatchfrontford

Ford offers eight hybrid models on its lineup, but the car to look at is the 2021 Mustang Mach-E. This all-electric vehicle has 300 miles of range and can get up to 61 miles of range in 10 minutes when charging with a 150kW DC Fast Charger. Ford boasts the inclusion of FordPass for purchasers this gives owners of Ford EVs, or Hybrids, access to over 13,500 charging stations nationwide. 

Instagram – @ford

This all-electric mustang is said to come out for sale in late 2020. The stylish and sexy design, topped with exciting new tech features, has people lining up to pre-order their own. With substantial federal rebates and the Ford Promise’s added security, owning a 2021 Mustang Mach-E is a viable option for those searching for a new EV. Help combat the climate crisis purchase of this cutting-edge car!

Tl;dr

  • EV’s are responsible for much lower emissions than their gas-powered cars
  • July 29th, Ford announced new initiatives under the Ford Promise plan
  • Any new financed Ford can be returned without penalty to the buyer, if the buyer loses their job within one year of purchase
  • Ford offers eight hybrid models on its current lineup
  • The 2021 Mustang Mach-E is all-electric and has 300 miles of range
  • The Mach-E gets up to 61 miles of range in 10 minutes when charging with a 150kW DC Fast Charger
  • With the FordPass Ford owners have access to over 13,500 charging stations nationwide

© Copyright 2018 – 2020. ALL Rights Reserved.

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Leave No Trace — A Parents Guide

Washington (GGM) Analysis | August 18, 2020 by Sarah J. Kings

You are trying your best to head an eco-friendly family.  You are recycling and upcycling like a champ, you’re careful not to waste water or gas, and maybe you’ve even incorporated Meatless Mondays into your routine. With all the planet conscious talk around your house, your kids are probably starting to show a little love for Mother Nature too.

Twitter- @NatureKidsBC

Inviting your children to the conservation will inevitably lead to more time spent outdoors.  When you and your loved ones ‘get out’ and try to make the most out of summer, it is essential to remember: Leave No Trace. Leave No Trace is an outdoor ethics initiative that has helped people preserve and protect the environment for over 25 years.

The 7 Principles of Leave No Trace

  • Plan ahead & prepare
  • Travel & camp on durable surfaces
  • Dispose of waste properly
  • Leave what you find
  • Minimize campfire impacts
  • Respect wildlife
  • Be considerate of other visitors

As a parent, it is important to take these principals with you when venturing into parks or woods with your kids.  Even if you are only going for the day and won’t be camping- you can still make sure to Leave No Trace.  

Before your outing, be sure to bring water and snacks in reusable containers.  It is also a good idea to bring a small satchel with you to collect any waste. You may find that other people have left behind water bottles or wrappers— help out by getting it out of the woods. Instead of bringing home trinkets like rocks, flowers, or bugs, bring a camera. Encourage your children to photograph what they see, so as not to disrupt the natural ecosystem. Make sure that you and your family members stay on the trails so that growing plants and small wildlife are not disturbed. Also, be sure that no one in your group breaks branches or carves initials into tree trunks.

Instagram- @texaskidsadventures

There are so many ways you can teach your children to respect Mother Nature while giving her a visit. The most important thing you can do is talk about it. Tell your children about Leave No Trace. Doing so will open up an avenue for their own personal interest in conservation to thrive. 

© Copyright 2018 – 2020. ALL Rights Reserved.

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What You Need to Know to Go Solar During Pandemic

Washington (GGM) Analysis | August 18, 2020 by Sarah J. Kings

While solar power has previously been thought to be a beacon of hope for the environment and the economy, the industry is currently in crisis.  Amid COVID 19, the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) published a press release availing quarter two outcomes.  

Prior to the pandemic, it was projected that solar energy projects would offer 302,000 Americans jobs by June of 2020.  Instead, the industry saw a job loss of 114,000 workers. SEIA  states, “The Q2 solar deployment losses are equivalent to powering 288,000 homes and $3.2 billion in economic investment.”  This type of down-turn sets the solar workforce back to levels seen in 2014. 

In the same press release, SEIA blames a lack of “strategic government action” for this setback.  However, they also state, “with the right policies in place, the solar industry is poised to lead the U.S. out of this economic recession and create jobs for thousands of Americans.”

Just recently, the association published a COVID 19 resource guide for the solar industry.  Alongside this guide, they have launched a social media campaign, #RebuildBetter,  to build awareness and advocate for the necessary policies to support solar energy.

Now is the perfect time to jump in and switch to renewable energy for your household. It’s super simple to get started. Just click on EnergySage.com to get a free quote and learn about the incentives and rebates in your area. EnergySage will calculate the costs and benefits. Check it out today. It can’t hurt to find out more information about this critical technology. To take advantage of rare incentives, get a free quote today.

There are five main things you can do to support the solar industry in this time of need. 

  • Submit a Solar Power Testimonial to the SEIA
  • Make a personal or company-related donation to support solar-related COVID 19 relief efforts
  • Submit company project-level data to EIA
  • Support the campaign #RebuildBetter
  • Go to EnergySage.com for information and a free quote for installing solar panels to your house. 

© Copyright 2018 – 2020. ALL Rights Reserved.

Eco-Friendly Fashion & Green Brooklyn Brand

Washington (GGM) Analysis | August 14, 2020 by Sarah J. Kings

America has a skeleton lurking in her closet— or rather, a skeleton leaving the closet. It is estimated that each person in the US throws away an average of 70 lbs of unwanted clothing annually. Keeping in mind that a shirt or a pair of jeans is worn only seven times before ending up in a landfill, this is a problematic amount of unnecessary consumer waste. The solution: more thoughtful consumerism, upcycling, and recycling old clothes. Yes, you can recycle clothes. According to the Secondary Materials and Recycled Textiles Association, SMART, up to 95% of all used clothing is recyclable.  

Keep your eyes open for brands using ethically sourced and recycled fabrics!

Twitter- @GreenBrooklynbd

The Green Brooklyn Brand, owned by New York Native Antoine Jackson, is definitely a brand to follow. They focus heavily on bringing environmentalism and sustainability to the streetwear conversation. In an exclusive interview, Jackson told the Hill Report that the brand plans on “revolutionizing the way we see fashion…[with] simple techniques that will help to heal the world.” All of Green Brooklyn Brand’s clothes are made with eco-friendly fabrics like hemp, Eco-Triblend, and RPET. RPET stands for Recycled Polyethylene Terephthalate— simply put, this is a fabric that is composed of recycled polyesters and plastics.  

The clothing line is designed to be comfortable, recyclable, and reusable.  The durability and ingenuity of the brand speaks directly to its consumers, and changes the way the world looks at streetwear. Jackson stated, “Green Brooklyn Brand garments are meant to be strong, just like the common Brooklynite.”  

Instagram-@greenbrooklynbrand

Even more exciting, Jackson hinted at an upcoming fusion of technology and fashion for the brand.  Without giving too much away, he said, “I believe we are on to something very chic and revolutionary in the world of wearable tech.”  While we are not sure exactly what is coming down the pike, we can imagine that this will be big in the world of eco-friendly fashion.

If you want bold fashion that takes a strong position on sustainability, wear Green Brooklyn Brand, and post your eco-friendly fashion on social media with #greenbrooklynbrand or #gbb!

Tl:dr

  • Each person in the US throws away an average of 70 lbs of unwanted clothing each year
  • 95% of all used clothing is recyclable
  • The Green Brooklyn Brand brings environmentalism and sustainability to streetwear
  • Green Brooklyn Brand’s clothes are made with eco-friendly fabrics like Hemp, Eco-Triblend, and RPET. RPET 
  • Owner, Antoine Jackson hinted at an upcoming fusion of technology and fashion for the brand

© Copyright 2018 – 2020. ALL Rights Reserved.