Interview with Juhea Kim, Founder of Peaceful Dumpling

Juhea Kim, photo by Nola Logan 

How did you start Peaceful Dumpling? 

I started Peaceful Dumpling in 2013. I had been vegan for a while and I really wanted to spread the word about veganism. At the time, I was focused on animal treatment. However, in the past 3-4 years, the message has been so much bigger than animal welfare because climate change has become an ever growing issue. Veganism is a huge part of the solution to climate change. l've grown more interested in sustainable fashion, and living a holistic, healthy, and positive lifestyle.

What were the biggest challenges you've faced with Peaceful Dumpling?

There are challenges for every startup or entrepreneur. It has been a challenge to set my own pace and to continue to push forward when progress is sometimes slow. In any business, accomplishments come later than you want and it takes far more work than you expect. It took a lot not to be discouraged. Staying authentic to my own vision was the biggest key. 

What do you see for the future of fashion? 

I would like to see consumers become more aware of how their choices can either support responsible talent or perpetuate the cycle of pollution and unfair labor practices. One of the biggest changes on how I purchase fashion is that I always support smaller independent designers or designers who use environmentally friendly fabrics. However time consuming, I seek out ethical designers. Something that's really valuable about JSONG is that designer Way Zen designs and manufactures some items in New York City. She's also promoting a lot of made to order, which cuts down on excess production. This is all really good for reducing retail pollution.

How do you incorporate sustainability in everyday life? 

  1. Eat plant based. A plant based lifestyle produces much less methane and related emissions. Methane traps I00 times more heat than carbon. Livestock and farming are among the biggest polluters in the world. I always advise people to try veganism. It helps you to be physically and spiritually healthy. If someone is suffering from depression or anxiety, I suggest trying veganism.
  2. Choose sustainable fashion. You don't have to buy a new. Wear what you own and wear it well. When you buy something, make sure you treasure it and wear it for a long, long time. Don't buy fast fashion and throw it away because it will wind up in a landfill.
  3. Reduce plastic. That can mean saying no to plastic bags and using your own tote bag. I don't use straws. I don't buy beverages in plastic bottles. Most of the plastic drink bottles that are produced and thrown out are plastic water bottles.
  4. Compost. Produces less methane.
Photo of Juhea Kim by Nola Logan. 



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