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Episode 561: Supporting Plant-Based Companies ft. Amy Trakinski

By Jasmin and Mariann — October 10, 2020

“Sustainability” is the word of the week, as Jasmin takes a trip to Vermont to check out a few Net Zero homes and consider her next move. Although Vermont was as lovely and progressive as expected, sadly the dairy industry is alive and well, striking a discordant note. Speaking of self-sustained living reminds Mariann of The Good Life, by Helen and Scott Nearing, which is about the couple’s sixty years of self-sustained, and vegan, living in New England.

In Our Hen House Supports Vegan Businesses we’re shouting out Demi Blue Natural Nails, a Black-owned vegan nail polish company in St. Louis, as well as Impact Veganics, a vegan deodorant company that’s currently donating 100% of profits to animal rights organizations. Last (but not least!), we’re promoting Honest Pastures which offers plant-based meat approved by happy animals. They’re offering a special discount for Our Hen House listeners — use code “ourhenhouse” for 10% off your entire order.

Our guest this week is Amy Trakinski, the Managing Director at VegInvest, a vegan investment fund that provides early-stage capital to companies striving to replace animal products. She is a passionate animal activist and lawyer who spent 18 years litigating on behalf of animal protection organizations as a partner in the animal law firm, Egert and Trakinski. Amy also serves on the boards of Animal Outlook and Animal Welfare Trust, organizations that align with her values of promoting the animal protection community, working to end animal abuse, and promoting a vegan lifestyle.

Amy joins the show to dive into the details of her role at VegInvest and their mission to invest in and support companies innovating in the alternative protein space. She discusses her personal awakening to animals and why she finds it so inspiring to work with small, mission-based companies looking to scale and bring a plant-based diet into the mainstream. Amy also shares what she’s most excited about in terms of upcoming vegan companies and products and where she thinks plant-based food will be ten years from now.

“The world is literally on fire, and animal agriculture is so harmful to us, to the animals, and to the planet, that we need to work as quickly as possible to address it. The clock is ticking.”
– Amy Trakinski

This Week in Our Hen House:

  • The dramatic growth of the alternative protein space
  • The companies that VegInvest has high hopes for
  • Why Amy finds it so inspiring to work with startups that are so motivated to scale
  • The elements VegInvest are looking for when deciding which companies to invest in
  • Some of the qualities they look for in founders, including a sense of a ‘meeting of minds’
  • Why big companies often look to small boutique companies as an example of possible research
    and development areas
  • Why Amy feels so optimistic about the fast uptick of interest in alternative proteins
  • The impact on your health of increasing whole foods in your diet
  • Amy’s role as the Board Chair of Animal Outlook and their current campaigns

Connect with Amy Trakinski:

Connect with Our Hen House:

This episode is sponsored by Forager Project, an organic, plant-based family-owned and operated food company creating innovative, delicious tasting products sourced from nature’s finest ingredients – nuts, seeds, ancient grains, fruits and vegetables. Crafted in its own unique purpose-built creamery – the only 100% organic, plant-based facility of its kind – Forager Project’s family of foods includes 100% vegan yogurts, nut milks, sour cream, kefirs, shakes and butter.

About Forager Project’s Vote Campaign: Forager ​is committed to helping cultivate democracy. During the next month, Forager Project​ will be shifting packaging on its yogurts, kefirs, and milks to encourage consumers nationwide to get involved and vote this November and launching a broader effort to encourage everyone to vote this November 3rd. Visit to check on your voting status and/or register!


This episode is also brought to you in part through the generosity of A Well-Fed World. A Well-Fed World provides the means for change by empowering individuals, social justice organizations, and political decision makers to embrace the benefits of plant-based foods and farming. Learn more at


You can listen to our podcast directly on our website, or subscribe on Apple Podcasts or your favorite podcatcher! Also, if you like what you hear, please rate it and leave us a comment on Apple Podcasts! Of course, we would be thrilled if you would also consider making a donation, or becoming a member of our flock (especially if you’re a regular listener). Any amount is hugely appreciated, and Our Hen House is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, so it’s tax-deductible! Thank you for helping us create quality content, and for helping us bring you a new podcast episode each week!

Don’t forget to tune into Our Hen House’s other two podcasts: The Teaching Jasmin How to Cook Vegan Podcast, and The Animal Law Podcast.

The Our Hen House theme song is written and performed by Michael Harren.

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