The Veggie Connection
The Veggie Connection is a series of networking events in California and Georgia that aims to connect influential members of the plant- based community with the general public. Their goal is to create awareness, educate, and have fun through small, intimate gatherings. It’s an entirely different experience than the usual festivals and conferences where you will see speakers on a stage, but the audience is unable to ask questions.
The Veggie Connection is the brainchild of Lateefah Smith, a vegan mom and entrepreneur who saw a need in the plant- based community and was inspired to star t hosting events to bring like- minded individuals together. We had the chance to speak with Lateefah about her growing business and how it’s changing the vegan movement.
Hi Lateefah, thanks for talking with us today. For those who are unfamiliar with your events, what exactly is The Veggie Connection and how did it star t?
The Veggie Connection is a series of small, intimate events where people get a chance to connect with one another on a professional and personal level.
It all started when I did a twenty- day herb detox back in 2008 to help adopt a plant- based diet. I felt that people shouldn’t have to travel far to attend events that are usually only held in the major cities. It was something I experienced first hand living in [ a small town in] Georgia and I had to travel to the nearest city, Atlanta, for events. In 2015, the first The Veggie Connection was held in Smyrna, GA.
Being from Southern California, I noticed the same thing was happening in my own hometown of Rancho Cucamonga, so that’s where we held our second event, “The Inland Empire Edition,” in 2016.
What can one expect at a The Veggie Connection event?
We try to sit in a circle with the main guest speaker, giving everyone a chance to interact. It’s a relaxing and enjoyable experience, and suited for the veggie novice or the seasoned vegan.
Some of our past guests have included Gene Baur from Farm Sanctuary and Genesis Butler from A Vegan Child’s Journey. [ The experience] varies depending on the event you attend. We strive to make the events fun and inclusive, [ we try to touch on] all the diverse reasons people choose a plant- based lifestyle.
Our next event is in Rancho Cucamonga, CA in early 2019. You can sign up on the website for tickets and details.
To find out more about upcoming The Veggie Connection events visit: