Wholly Veggie, a trailblazing food company based in Toronto, Canada, is revolutionizing the way we consume plant-based products. Founded in 2016, the company’s mission revolves around the belief that good eating is a basic human right, and Wholly Veggie is here to make that possible with fun, creative and proactive plant-based solutions.
Wholly Veggie was conceived by founders Johnathan Bonnell and David Orr Gaucher, who were both previously meat industry executives. Their journey towards a more sustainable path led to the creation of a company that celebrates vegetables for what they truly are, rather than attempting to transform them into meat substitutes. This novel approach differentiated Wholly Veggie from other companies that were striving to create faux meat products, marking a pivotal point in their brand identity.
The company’s initial product range consisted of a line of patties filled with colorful vegetables like beets, spinach and carrots. These were first introduced in numerous stores across Canada; however, the founders promptly redirected their focus, identifying an exciting opportunity to translate trendy, fun vegetable-based snacks commonly found in restaurants and bars into retail offerings. The widespread use of air fryers in households in recent years further fueled the expansion of their product line.
Wholly Veggie’s current product offerings stand testament to their innovative approach. The company offers a vast array of appetizers such as Buffalo Cauliflower Wings, which are full cauliflower florets, lightly coated in a crunchy, gluten-free panko crust and paired with their popular buffalo sauce. More recently, the brand added dairy-free Mozzarella Style Sticks and Cheddar Style Jalapeño Sticks made with surplus or imperfect cauliflower.
As for entrees, Wholly Veggie’s offerings include a Thai Curry made with chickpeas and drenched in a coconut cream sauce, a dish of Cheezy Cauliflower & Broccoli that is accompanied by chickpeas and a sauce with a rich cheddar flavor and a Southwest Chili that features black beans, kidney beans and chickpeas, complete with a cheddar flavor sauce.
The company also offers an Açaí Smoothie Bowl, a fresh spin on a classic favorite. New product additions like Sweet Potato Popcorn only add to the allure, offering consumers a chance to eat healthy without compromising on taste. These products can be found in a broad network of 6,000 retail stores across the US and Canada, including prominent chains such as Walmart, Target, Sprouts Farmers Market and Whole Foods Market.
To further spread the word, Wholly Veggie collaborated with a Los Angeles-based creative agency to create an advertising campaign. A key highlight of the campaign was a 45-second commercial that portrayed parents cleverly persuading their mischievous children to consume cauliflower. This scene, set against a backdrop of energetic heavy metal music and punctuated by a cheeky voiceover proclaiming, “Ha-ha! You just ate vegetables,” perfectly encapsulated the brand’s playful identity and tone.
But like any thriving business, Wholly Veggie faces competition from other companies in the plant-based food market, including KEHO, Nuttin Ordinary and THEO’s Plant Based. Despite the competition, Wholly Veggie stands out with its unique product line that emphasizes the natural goodness of vegetables. The company’s innovative approach, coupled with a dedication to promoting a healthier diet and a more sustainable world, ensures that Wholly Veggie will continue to be a leading player in the plant-based food industry.