The Scoop: Looking for a compatible date in the vegetarian community? You can go with your gut and sign up for Veggie Connection, a free dating site for singles who maintain fruit-and-vegetable diets. A Silicon Valley engineer named Ken launched the website in 2003 as a passion project, and it has become a global social network and matchmaker. Veggie Connection currently has over 50,000 members in its online database, and the high-tech platform is poised for future growth in the post-COVID era.
Ken Greer ran a high-tech company for years before selling it and getting into website development as a retirement hobby. He taught himself web design so he could build niche websites that he would want to use.
For instance, Ken is a competitive dancer, and his first website was called DancePartner.com. This site connects people with — you guessed it — dance partners. He has also been a vegan since he was 20 years old, so the idea for a vegetarian dating site seemed natural to him. He launched Veggie Connection in 2003 and has been running it ever since.
“I didn’t like the offerings for vegetarian dating, so I decided to create Veggie Connection as a gift to the community,” Ken explained. “The goal was never to be a big moneymaker but to provide a service to fellow vegetarians.”
Veggie Connection is a free dating service where singles can connect based on shared values and lifestyles. Its targeted tools assist in the search for a vegetarian friend, date, or significant other.
The dating website has an array of community-driven and mobile-friendly functions. Its profiles include photo and video galleries with adjustable privacy settings. The public discussion board fosters conversations between like-minded people around the world. Plus, sending direct messages is free for all members, so it doesn’t take much to spark a new connection.
“As a techie and geek, I love to add value to the website, so it’s got so many features,” Ken told us.
A Feature-Rich Platform for Finding Date Prospects
Veggie Connection is not your typical dating site. It dives deeper than photo swiping and uses sophisticated matchmaking to inspire more lasting relationships and friendships in the vegetarian community.
Ken described the match system as flexible and AI-driven. An algorithm finds matches by assessing user preferences. The website aims to deliver 100% matches, but it will also feature profiles that are close to perfect matches and have a lot of compatible characteristics. For example, a single person could be a year or two outside the user’s age range but have similar interests and live in the same area. That match is promising enough to be worth a look, so it’ll appear as an option in the search results.
Users can input all sorts of dating criteria for a potential partner. And they can also specify if they’re looking for dating opportunities or a new friendship.
“We have two directories: one for dating and one for friendships,” Ken explained. “We found vegetarians are sometimes lonely and just want more friends who are vegetarians.”
Singles have used Veggie Connection to meet hiking buddies, travel companions, and pen pals as well as traditional dates. The website offers free communication tools to help these budding relationships grow. The options include prewritten greetings and icebreakers, in case you’re new to online dating and not sure how to get the ball rolling.
There is no charge to send and receive emails. Users can also spend tokens on T-mails (like emails), which come with an alert system for when the message has been read.
Veggie Connection has several galleries available on its dating profiles. A member can add up to 52 photos onto his or her free public photo gallery, and premium subscriptions also have a Private Gallery and Video Gallery where users can decide who gets to see the content. The Credentials Gallery is also a premium feature and is private because it features uploaded copies of IDs such as driver’s licenses, passports, and COVID vaccine cards. Uploading credentials is optional, but many users choose to do so to prove their worth to an online match.
Additionally, the dating site has a discussion board and user polls where people can express their opinions, beliefs, and values. In a recent poll, about 56% of Veggie Connection users said they are fully vaccinated or will be soon.
Users Can Explore a World of Romantic Possibilities
Over the years, thousands of vegetarian singles have embraced Veggie Connection and used it as a hangout, chat room, and matchmaking service. This dating hub reaches people in the U.S., Canada, Australia, and Europe. Ken said it also has a surprisingly robust following in Singapore.
User ages range from 18 to 80, and a sizable chunk are single professionals in their 30s and 40s. These people know who they are and what they want in their next relationship, and Veggie Connection helps them achieve their goals.
Veggie Connection can expand a single person’s horizons and make introductions that can only happen online.
“People write me thanking me because they’ve met someone who lives far away — often in another country — and they say they would never have met except for this dating site,” Ken said. “It’s really very rewarding for me to see that the site is improving people’s lives.”
Veggie Connections allows members to conduct searches in other countries, and they can even set travel dates if they’re planning a trip abroad. The dating site will coordinate with the dates and showcase the profile to nearby matches during the trip.
The website features success stories from couples who hit things off online and then met in real life. Some started dating and got engaged, while others found a friendship that took them to foreign shores.
Keith and Yvonne met on Veggie Connection on the first of December and became fast friends and pen pals. Within a few months of chatting, Keith booked a flight from his home in the U.S. to Indonesia to see Yvonne in person. He spent three weeks meeting her family and getting to know her better. Now they have overcome the long distance and are happily married.
“We’re looking forward to many adventures together and to spend the rest of our lives together,” Keith said.
Other testimonials tell of more local love stories, and some couples say they are celebrating engagements or anniversaries.
“I have met the love my life! About five months ago, we met on VeggieConnection.com. Wayne and I have continued to talk for hours every day,” said Traye in a testimonial. “I hope you guys know how much I am grateful to you for allowing me to find such an incredible guy who is perfect for me. Thanks for changing my life.”
Veggie Connection Helps Like-Minded People Meet Online
Since its launch, Veggie Connection has become a hub of romantic activity. Many vegetarian and vegan singles hang out in the forum and engage in friendly conversations in hopes of it growing into something more.
Veggie Connection has proven its worth as a reliable wingman to singles around the world. Even a global pandemic cannot slow its matchmaking game for long. Singles on the site are looking for a meaningful connection, and they can send private messages or publish posts to get to know people in the vegetarian community.
As far as features are concerned, Ken said he has added just about everything he could think of — including private galleries and user polls — and the user experience is as streamlined as he can make it. Therefore, his primary concern is growing the Veggie Connection community and facilitating more friendships and relationships around the globe.
“My goal, now that we’re sort of getting out of the pandemic, is to improve the exposure of the website,” Ken told us. “I want to get more people on board.”