A New Plant-Based Innovation ETF for Those Who Want to Invest in the Vegan Future
We are getting a step closer to the vegan world. The US investment management firm VegTech™ Invest Management Advisory has launched on the New York Stock Exchange a new Exchange-Traded Fund (ETF). It is being marketed as the first global ETF of publicly-traded, plant-based innovation companies. This is the Plant-Based Innovation ETF (Ticker EATV). It includes 40 publicly traded companies that are reported to be actively innovating with plants and plant ingredients and producing primary products that are animal-free.
VegTech™ Invest advisors are Sasha Goodman and Elysabeth Alfano, a frequent collaborator to UnchainedTV through her Plant-Based Business Hour channel. Elysabeth also has her own channel on the UnChainedTV streaming network. They believe the companies they have chosen positively impact climate change. They maintain these companies also help to solve some of the world’s most pressing problems such as food insecurity, deforestation, animal cruelty and public health. Jane-Velez Mitchell could not wait to interview Elysabeth, CEO of VegTech™ Invest, about this exciting new project.
How the First Plant-Based Innovation ETF Was Created
It seems it all came about by trying to find something that did not exist:
“It was about a year and a half of research and then about nine months of paperwork. I was looking, along with my partner Sasha Goodman, for an ETF in the market that was supporting the companies that were innovating for change in our food supply system. I didn’t want to pick the individual companies. Of course, you could go and pick things like Oatley. But, I wanted to support the whole chain: ingredient companies that were innovating for change, technology companies, material companies. We always think plant-based is food, but you have plant-based makeup companies, plant-based shampoo companies. I couldn’t find an ETF, and I said: ‘well, if I can’t find it, I am going to make it myself.’ And that started the journey.
“If we’re ever going to really protect ourselves for a clean and healthy food supply system, you’re going to have to add more than Beyond Meat and Impossible — those are the only things that people think about. So, I wanted to start investing in companies that are innovating with plants to change our food supply system: fermented proteins, for example, or ingredient companies. And, home care products that are really going plant-based with no animal products.
“We are the very first to market with a plant-based innovation ETF. We are sort of defining an entirely new investment sector: the companies that are innovating with plants to create animal-free products for sustainable consumption.”
A Shift in the Food Supply System
Elysabeth told Jane what VegTech™ Invest cares about:
“At VegTech™ Invest, we believe these companies positively impact planetary health, human health, and animal health. We also believe that we are on the cusp of a long-term, secular trend of plant-based innovation that will result in the disruption of the global food and materials supply chain for a more efficient, climate-friendly and cruelty-free system.
“I remember when the pandemic came along and I was so mad because I could see the connection between the pandemic and our food supply system.
“You’re not going to impact climate change until you change the food supply system. This is why the word ‘climate’ is at the end of our ETF: VegTech Plant-Based Innovation and Climate ETF.
“When you look at our current food supply system, it’s extremely inefficient. And business doesn’t like that. Business rewards efficiency. So, we’re going to see a lot of innovation. This technology works with plants that require less land and less water to make better foods that maybe have more protein because all protein really comes from plants. That’s the secular trend of creating sustainable products that don’t have animal products in them using this new technology.”
According to a 2020 study by Aramark, 65% of people from Generation Z want a more plant-forward diet. While 79% would eat meatless meals once or twice a week, either now or in the future. The State of Consumer Spending reported that 68% of Millennials are willing to pay more for sustainable products.
“What we’re talking about here today is a global shift of the food supply system because it has to be, no matter what you believe in — animals, your health, whatever.” –Elysabeth Alfano, CEO of VegTech™ Invest
Vegan Investing Is Growing
Vegan investing is a reality. It started in May 2019, when Beyond Meat made history as the first fully plant-based food brand to go public. Soon after, The Very Good Food Company, which owns The Very Good Butchers, went public on the Canadian Securities Exchange. Then, others followed: Modern Meat, Laird Superfood, Globally Local Technologies Inc. and Oatly. And, news reports speculate that EAT Just, Impossible Foods and Perfect Day are preparing to go public. The list keeps growing.
Now, Sasha Goodman and Elysabeth Alfano have created a new ETF with a new twist. It only chooses companies that produce innovative alternatives to animal products. In other words, its focus is: companies building the vegan world.
The EATV ETF is not only plant-based, though. Fungi, bacteria, and cell cultivation are also included. I asked Elysabeth if this also involved animal cells, and she replied: “We currently have one company that is researching printed meat and cultivated meat and not yet putting out any products. As the tech grows, we will have companies that are innovating with animal cells from a database, but not actually using animals.”
It’s Not Only About Food
Alfano says the good thing about investing in vegan-friendly ETFs is to support the many companies that cover various aspects of ethical veganism. It’s not just food, but also clothes, hobbies, cosmetics, etc. Elysabeth explains how the Plant-Based Innovation ETF can do that:
“I anticipate that we are going to see a lot of growth in plant-based materials. It might come to the public markets. It might still just be growth and venture in the private arena. But, I think you’re going to see a lot of vegan fashion. Right now, we have several plant-based materials companies in the fund. But, you’re going to see a lot more because, ultimately, you don’t have change if you just have Impossible Foods and Beyond Meat. You only get real change in the system when you change the whole way from the start to the finish. It’s a huge secular trend.
“It’s great if people can invest alongside their values. That’s why we made this product. But, more than anything, I’m hoping that this prompts people to educate themselves about the impact of our current food supply system and why we have to change it.”
“This change is already happening. The wheels are already in motion.” –Elysabeth Alfano, CEO of VegTech™ Invest
“The fund’s investment objectives, risks, charges and expenses must be considered carefully before investing. The prospectus and summary prospectus contain this and other important information about the investment company, and it may be obtained by visiting EATV.VegTechInvest.com. Read it carefully before investing.” – VegTech Invest
The above article is informational only. It is not a recommendation. Your investment decisions are your own.