AN animal welfare group has created a guide to help residents find 'fair trade'-based and animal-friendly products in their local area.
Caroline Springs Animal Welfare Group president Rana Hales says the Cruelty-Free Guide to the West features a comprehensive list of eateries, specialty shops and supermarkets that sell fair-trade, animal-friendly and vegan products.
"People were contacting us, asking if there was anywhere they could purchase organic food or products that were not tested on animals,"
"We found that lots of people who were passionate about animal rights or had a strict vegan diet were
travelling all the way to the city to shop because they didn't realise it was already available in their own backyard."
The guide features businesses in Moorabool, Brimbank, Melton, Wyndham, Hobsons Bay and Maribyrnong.
Among those that made the
cut was Bacchus Marsh's Fruits
of Life. "We grow all our fruit and vegetables on site except our tropical line which we import," proprietor Belinda Dellios (pictured) said.
Ms Dellios and husband Sam started the business in 1998 in an old tin shed that has since been converted into bustling retail business.
"We just love fresh, organic food," Ms Dellios said.
"When we first opened the store we were growing fresh fruit and vegetables on our own property and wanted to share them with people."
The Cruelty-Free Guide to the West is available online at