Cruelty Free Investing Ideas For Vegetarians And Vegans
With the rise of ethical investment opportunities that exclude things like firearms, tobacco, and other businesses that can be harmful to humans, vegans and vegetarians and often left asking, "What about me?".
You're probably thinking, “okay, that’s great that I can avoid giving my money to corporations that contribute to the unnecessary suffering and deaths of humans, but I don’t want to fund the mass-execution of animals either.”
Vegan and vegetarian investing is a relatively newer trend, but if the first few months of Beyond Meat’s performance since their IPO is any indication, the markets are warming up to this idea.
Most major fund companies have some version of an ethical investment fund, but vegan options are still limited. Despite this, you can still buy shares of individual companies, and there is at least one ETF that focuses on veganism.
If you want to invest in companies that don’t run contrary to your own beliefs, or even if you see this trend as something that’s going to continue to grow regardless of your own life choices, there are some options available.
The VEGN Fund
Over a year ago, Beyond Investing started tracking a US Vegan Climate Index. You can invest in that index in the form of an ETF, which trades using the ticker symbol VEGN.
This index tracks companies that won’t profit off of animal cruelty, chosen from the Solactive US Large Cap Index. VEGN has roughly 300 different companies in the fund.
Does this make a real difference? According to Claire Smith, fund founder and investment analyst:
"An investor in this new index will avoid funding the slaughter of 13 animals a year for every $1,000 invested."
It’s more than just an ethical decision, though. At the end of the day, you need to earn a return on your investments, and veganism is growing in popularity which could ultimately result in less demand for meat, and higher demand for vegan-friendly businesses.
This is one of the top IPO stories of 2019. Beyond Meat has deals with many large food companies, and has quickly become synonymous with “meat alternatives”. They’ve recognized the popularity of the “flexitarian”, which is someone who still eats meat, but is more open to trying meat alternatives on a more regular basis.
As this segment grows, and as people who normally default to ground beef start to grab a Beyond Meat patty as a healthier alternative, their growth should skyrocket.
Other Investment Options for Vegans and Vegetarians
There are plenty of other options for investors like yourself that are interested in cruelty free companies. Here are the top 10 holding of VEGN. None of these companies expoit animals in any way.
- Bank Of America
You can download a full list of the funds holdings here.
It’s never a good idea to have all of your eggs in one basket, especially if you’re trying to avoid animal products altogether! So my advice would be to either invest directly in VEGN or diversify your portfolio by choosing from the list of holdings in the fund. As more funds emerge that track different indexes, along with more companies like Beyond Meat growing and going public, your options will increase as well.