Follow Your Heart Dairy-Free Cheddar

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Savannah Jimenez
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Follow Your Heart Dairy Free Cheddar has been one of my go to products since going vegan. Discovering their commitments to sustainability has made me admire them more. However, it's important to keep in mind that this company was recently bought by a large corporation and has goals of expanding globally. Although this means that accessibility to plant-based products could increase, there is a possibility that harmful impacts could be made if sustainability isn't kept as a value of this company. I hope Follow Your Heart remains transparent about upcoming plans and sustainability commitments for the future. 

What it's made of:


Unlike traditional cheddar cheese that is made from cow’s milk, follow your heart cheddar is 100% plant-based. The main ingredients are water, coconut oil, potato, and corn starch and canola oil. This product is not only great for people with dairy intolerances but also for people looking for a more sustainable option for cheese. 99% of animal products in the United States come from factory farms. Factory farming is a form of intensive agriculture that produces cheap animal products by confining large numbers of animals in small, crowded living spaces. Choosing a product with plant-based ingredients like Follow Your Heart is one of the best ways to avoid these practices. 

How it's made:


One of Follow Your Heart’s first projects when moving into their current facility in 2003 was to install over 750 solar panels on their roof. These solar panels generated about 100 kilowatt-hours (kWH) of green energy per year. This was more energy than they used back then and allowed them to sell the excess back into the city grid. As of today, their facility has grown and they now have over 2,000 panels which are generating over 300,000 kWh of energy per year. Follow Your Heart also diverts over 98% of their waste from landfills through recycling, composting, reduction, or reuse. Each year they divert about 200 tons to recycling, compost over 100 tons, and re-purpose over 200 of materials. Because of these commitments, they are the first plant-based manufacturing facility in the United States to achieve a Platinum Level Zero Waste Certification by TRUE certification. TRUE’s mission is to help buildings, businesses, and communities strengthen their commitment to resource management by measuring, improving, and recognizing zero waste performances. Follow Your Heart makes it clear that sustainability is an important part of being a responsible business and has proof to show it.

Who makes it:


Follow Your Heart was recently bought by Danone North America which is the world’s largest Certified B Corporation. Certified B corporations are legally required to consider the impact of their decisions on their workers, customers, supplier, community, and the environment. Looking at former employee reviews on, it looks like many people have been satisfied working under Danone North America. Out of the 2.7 thousand reviews, the average rating is a 4.2 out of 5. Follow Your Heart also states that their employee's engagement is vital to their success. They mention that they offer free electric car charging for employees and organize volunteer events to help local non-profit organizations. Unfortunately, this information gives vague insight about what the work environment and policies look like for their employees.