A One-stop Shop for All Things Vegans and Vegetarians – EatRoamLive

Being a vegetarian in 2005 Singapore didn’t come with many options – a realisation that Pooja Bakhshi soon had when she arrived on our shores. At the time, few eateries provided vegetarian-friendly options, and even fewer were fully-vegetarian. 

“I used to go to restaurants and have french fries,” she recounts. “Sometimes, at Burger King, I would get a Whopper Jr. and ask them to remove the patties, and it would come with a couple of slices of pickles… we would be excited over that.” 

Today, things couldn’t be more different.

Plant-based restaurants are aplenty and available across all types of cuisines. Being a vegetarian is a much less solitary experience today, as restaurants and eateries have begun integrating vegetarian options into their menu. 

As veganism and vegetarianism is gradually becoming more popular, alternative meats and dairy options have also exploded in Singapore.

But as options expanded, vegetarians in Singapore ran into a different conundrum: what should they eat? While the typical omnivore population has access to a whole host of resources and blogs dedicated to discovering the best food options across different cuisines, budgets, locations, and so on, the vegetarians among us were left in the dark. 

Pooja, Founder of EatRoamLive

As a self-declared foodie, Pooja decided to take matters into her own hands. She started her own platform to cater to vegetarians in the market, and thus, EatRoamLive was born. 

EatRoamLive: A vegetarian platform made vegan-friendly

EatRoamLive was started back in April 2017 with a mission to promote and facilitate a healthier, ethical, and environmentally-friendly veg(etari)an way of life. It’s not just about the food either, the platform was created to support all aspects of a vegetarian lifestyle; food, travel, fashion, and skincare, all-inclusive.  

While EatRoamLive started as a platform for vegetarians, it has since expanded to include vegan-specific content based on changes in Pooja’s own lifestyle from vegetarian to vegan. Interestingly, this change was very much catalysed by EatRoamLive.

READ: An Imperfect Vegan: Mansi’s Journey

Pooja shared with TheHomeGround an incident that occurred soon after EatRoamLive was launched. She had written an article about vegetarian pizzas in Singapore, and soon found herself fielding questions about whether the cheese included with these pizzas was vegetarian. 

She was befuddled by these questions. All this while, it had never occurred to her that cheese could be non-vegetarian. 

Upon further research, Pooja learned that a lot of cheeses actually contain animal rennet, a set of enzymes derived from the stomach of animals (in this case, cows). She was dumbfounded. 

Despite owning a platform for vegetarians, Pooja was led on her own journey to re-educate herself on food and the ingredients they contain. She soon realised that even when not visible, a lot of the food we eat contain ingredients that are of animal origins in the form of preservatives. 

As she slowly learned more, it dawned upon her that if she held true to the essence of her beliefs – promoting an ethical, healthier, and more environmentally-lifestyle, then the natural course of action would be a transition into veganism. 

READ: Can Going Vegan Really Improve My Mental Health?

And so, she made the switch, and her platform morphed with her. As she embarked on a vegan lifestyle, EatRoamLive likewise took on a more vegan focus, a move she firmly stands by today as the “healthier and environmentally-necessary choice”. 

A vegan platform that inspires

Damian's Demo from Singapore Vegan Festival 2019
Singapore Vegan Festival 2019. EatRoamLive.

Even though EatRoamLive started as a platform to share vegan and vegetarian resources and recommendations, it has since grown into something more: a movement. 

This was helped by one of Pooja’s newer initiatives, the Singapore Vegan Festival (SVF), which she launched back in 2019. SVF has one simple goal: to spread awareness about plant-based food products and prove that vegan doesn’t mean boring. 

In their inaugural festival, the SVF saw over 2,000 visitors show up in a true celebration of veganism. By offering a plethora of delectable food items, high-quality and sustainable products, and educational talks and panel discussions, SVF drew the intrigue of vegans and non-vegans alike. 

While the camaraderie displayed by the vegan community was heartening, Pooja shares that her most memorable moment since starting EatRoamLive occurred during the festival, when individuals who had simply been curious to learn more about veganism were convinced to take the leap and try out veganism for themselves. 

She recalled that two individuals had come up to her during the first vegan festival and shared that they had been looking to go vegan. At the festival, they finally knew where to start.

Moments like these are what pushes Pooja to continue building on the SVF year after year. Despite the pandemic potentially derailing their plans of a second iteration of SVF, Pooja faced up to the challenge and launched SVF online to much success. 

Moving forward, Pooja looks forward to staying the course. Through the festival, she is on a mission to debunk myths, support local vegan brands and businesses, and educate the public at large on how they, too, can make more ethical, healthier, and sustainable choices. 

READ: Mythbusters: Unravelling the Vegan Lifestyle at Singapore Vegan Festival

A one-stop shop for vegans

Pooja’s ultimate goal? To see EatRoamLive become the one-stop, go-to resource for all vegans and aspiring vegans. 

“They should be able to find everything in one place,” she said.

And by “everything”, Pooja really means it! On EatRoamLive, you won’t just be able to find all the resources and education you need, you’ll be able to purchase them too! 

To complement EatRoamLive and SVF, Pooja started Nourish so that vegans will be able to purchase vegan-friendly ingredients and products all in one place instead of having to scour the entire nation for them. 

With Nourish, Pooja takes veganism one step further. Beyond just being plant-based, all the products available on Nourish are also curated to ensure they are healthier and more sustainable. They are also continually expanding on their product range to give vegans a wider variety to choose from. 

Vegan Cheese Platter by NourishSG
Vegan Cheese Platter. NourishSG.

In fact, they’ve recently added cheese platters to their catalogue, a dish that many would think vegans will never be able to eat considering the main ingredient – cheese – is thought to be inherently a dairy product. 

READ: Host Like a Pro with This Delectable Vegan Cheeseboard

While interviewing Pooja, I personally got to try some of the vegan cheeses available on Nourish. As a self-declared cheese lover, I was thoroughly impressed by how closely these vegan cheeses resembled typical dairy cheese. Don’t just take my word for it; try them out for yourself here

There’s no better time than now to go vegan

Vegan-friendly options are growing every day, and they will continue to. With dairy-alternatives, meat-alternatives, and more being so readily available, going vegan today has never been easier. 

“Do your own research,” Pooja advises, “information is out there. [Veganism] is a healthier choice and sustainable choice. It’s absolutely necessary; animal agriculture at the scale we’re doing today is not possible (to maintain). We have to make these changes for our sake and for our children’s sake as well.” 

Whether you’re vegan-curious, a new vegan, have been vegan for a long time, or are just looking for delicious food options, EatRoamLive has got your back when it comes to information, reviews, and more. 

Looking for a vegan community? Stay tuned to EatRoamLive’s Instagram (@eatroamlive) for updates on this year’s (hopefully in-person) Singapore Vegan Festival.

Otherwise, if you’re just looking for a convenient place to get some of your vegan ingredients, Nourish is the place to go. Psst, some of these ingredients can also be integrated into this simple and incredibly refreshing Summer Rice Rolls recipe!

Special thanks to:
EatRoamLive (@eatroamlive)

This is a prelude and the first part of an introduction to TheHomeGround Vegan Channel. Over the coming months, we will be releasing additional content about vegan lifestyles and introducing resources for rookies and established vegans alike.

Join the conversations on THG’s Facebook and Instagram, and get the latest updates via Telegram.




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