Cruelty-free Portugal is rallying

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A country that still has a far too big number of people who consider bull-fighting a tradition, the cruelty-free lifestyle is gaining strength in Portugal.  There are new annual events, vegan cooking course, small business is beginning to adopt an eco-friendly approach to the workspace, and, new brands pop up every year, in cruelty-free fashion, eco-friendly home decoration, and, in the eco-tourism sector.




Like everywhere else, creative vegans are popping up around the world.  Portugal is no exception.  You might find a million recipes for the same dip.  But they’re never the same.  Each vegan food blogger adds a taste of their country to classic, well known recipes.  That’s the beauty of the vegan world.  It is so creative.


Some might say, a truck running about every day is just adding on to the already polluted city.  Lisbon is indeed a polluted city, boasting one of Europe’s highest pollution levels in the entire EU.

It’s easy to forgive, though, when you realise that this truck places itself front and centre in one of the city’s main arteries offering good, fresh, organic vegan food.  Easy access = business.

Potentially, there is a new clientele every day in big bustling city like Lisbon.  That’s great PR for the vegan diet.

My Green Truck in Lisbon, Portugal



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Being Portuguese myself, nothing makes me happier than to see so many people getting creative with local classics and giving it the vegan twist.  It’s the reason the Portuguese vegan community is growing.



A year ago, I’d go out for a meal and the best I could count on would be a salad or soup.  Hardly any restaurant had a reasonable vegan menu to offer me.  A year ago.

But a year later, the plant-based regime has gained traction and we, local vegans, are discovering new places – vegan bars, restaurants, vegan cafés.  Not only in Lisbon or Porto, but in Coimbra, Algarve, Aveiro!



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Like the rest of southern Europe, short-term rentals have taken over from mainstream hotel chains.  The younger visitor likes the homeliness of staying in a home rather than a hotel, while the more mature visitor enjoys  the simplicity of bringing the kids, the extended family and pets for all to stay together in a fully-equipped private home.  This trend has lead to another – the eco-friendly short-stay properties.



Portugal has always had a reputation for quality work in the shoe-making industry.  Up North, Portuguese factories have been producing for major global brands for the last 2-3 decades non stop.

For the last few years, old factories, feeling the bite of lower consumption worldwide, have taken a new approach to their inherited business and transformed the old factories from producing leather shoes to producing cruelty-free shoes.

That is what Rutz did. And this year, in 2020, the brand is investing heavily in showcasing their vegan shoes to the world at Macef, in Milan.  There is no bigger trade fair in the world for the shoe industry.


The Portuguese are getting creative and new cruelty-free businesses are popping up every day.

Rutz – Vegan shoes made in Portugal


To finish, food.  Every classical dish is getting its brand new take by veganistas across the country.  My personal favourite is the cod-less vegan dish, the vegan version of one of Portugal’s most loved dishes.  A clever mix of mushrooms and seaweed really does match or supercede the taste of the original.

[cooked-recipe-card id=”25342″]


Local eco-friendly business

Though still an original concept in the Portuguese eco-friendly market, this property boasts it’s surroundings as it’s selling point.  With more and more visitors and locals alike selecting nature for their holiday getaways, this spot boasts an untouched natural reserve as it’s neighbour.

Find local restaurants, hotels, or other services who serve with an emphasis on a sustainable, cruelty-free business model.

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