Tag Archives: food

New Report Details Growth of Sustainable Hospital Food Service Programs

Health care food service programs are rapidly becoming more sustainable, following a conscious decision to provide fresher, more sustainable foods to benefit patients and the planet.

A detailed accounting of these advances can be found in the 2011 Menu of Change report, published by the Health Care Without Harm (HCWH) Healthy Food in Health Care (HFHC) program. This report is the second in a series of reports tracking progress in this area and contains the results of a survey of U.S. hospitals and long-term care facilities that work with HCWH on implementation of sustainable food service practices.

“Many health care facilities are taking extraordinary and creative measures to make their food services more sustainable while providing fresh, nutritious food choices to patients, staff and visitors,” said Emma Sirois, MS, Oregon HCWH Program Director and co-author of the new report. “The 2011 Menu of Change shows that many hospital food service programs are quite far along on their sustainability journey and those that are not as far along are advancing rapidly.”

The survey was conducted in June 2011 and was designed to gather data on advances made in 2010. Eighty-nine facilities completed the survey including many that have signed the HCWH Healthy Food in Health Care Pledge, a commitment to work in a stepwise fashion to source more local and sustainably produced food among other activities. Facilities ranged in size from 11 to 1200 beds with an average size of 300. They served an average of 731 patient meals and 1650 cafeteria meals per day in 2010 and spent approximately $291 million total on food and beverages.

2011 Menu of Change Survey Highlights

Nutrition
Most respondents have taken one or more of the following steps to increase their offerings of fruits and vegetables and nutritionally dense and minimally processed, unrefined foods and to reduce unhealthy (trans and saturated) fats and sweetened foods.

Approximately 97 percent adapted menus to include non-starch vegetable options for lunch and dinner and provide a minimum of one protein-balanced vegetarian menu option during each meal:

  • 87.5 percent have completely eliminated trans-fats (partially hydrogenated/fully hydrogenated) and created a heart-healthy oils purchasing policy
  • 80.5 percent create soup from scratch
  • 74.7 percent serve fresh local produce when available

Sustainable food procurement
Many facilities are choosing to purchase and serve more locally sourced and sustainably produced food and beverages–

  • 94.1 percent purchased and served local food or beverages
  • 80 percent purchased sustainable dairy products
  • 45 percent purchased sustainable beef
  • 36 percent purchased sustainable chicken

Build direct relationships with local farms

  • 81.8 percent of respondents host a farmers’ market, farm stand or community-supported agriculture (CSA program on-site)
  • 60 percent purchased directly from a farm, ranch or farm cooperative

Waste Reduction

  • 66.2 percent of respondents used bio-based non-reusable food service ware and takeout containers
  • 50 percent use a room service model for patient food delivery
  • 39.5 percent had a program in place to compost organic materials (food waste and compostable paper and plastic food ware items)
  • 37.7 percent had a usable food donation program in place

“This Menu of Change report is an excellent introduction for anyone seeking to begin a sustainable foods program at their hospital,” said Marie Kulick, MSEL, HFHC Sustainable Procurement advisor and report co-author. “In addition to the survey data which can be used to set goals, the report includes lively, informative anecdotes from peers, cost cutting strategies, profiles of leading institutions and more.”

The 2011 Menu of Change report also summarizes major HFHC activities taking place in nine states; and describes the HFHC initiatives, including Balanced Menus, Non-Therapeutic Use of Antibiotics Prevention, the HFHC Pledge, the Green Guide for Health Care Food Service Toolkit, and recent efforts to reduce or eliminate Sugar-Sweetened Beverages, among other initiatives promoted by the HCWH. It also contains a listing of contacts for hospital and food service directors or activists to reach out to HFHC program staff for assistance.

“Hospitals are increasingly being seen as anchor institutions that are needed to support healthier communities and a healthier local economy,” stated Gary Cohen, President of HCWH. “If we are to solve the epidemic and escalating costs of obesity in American society, hospitals need to be critical partners in redesigning sustainable food systems and modeling the kind of food choices that the rest of us need to adopt. The Healthy Food Program is creating these models and pointing the way toward this systemic transformation.”

The 2011 Menu of Change report was co-written by Sirois, Kulick and Alyssa Nathanson, M.D., RD, HFHC Vermont coordinator. Results of the survey were used to determine the HCWH HFHC awards given at the organization’s 2011 FoodMed. And award winners are profiled in the report.

The HFHC Program is a national initiative of HCWH, developed in conjunction with its member organizations, which mobilizes advocates to work with hospitals across the country to help improve the sustainability of their food services. For more information about the HCWH Healthy Food in Health Care Program, visit www.healthyfoodinhealthcare.org .

Health Care Without Harm is an international coalition of more than 508 organizations in 53 countries, working to transform the health care industry worldwide, without compromising patient safety or care, so that it is ecologically sustainable and no longer a source of harm to public health and the environment. For more information about HCWH, visit www.noharm.org .

SOURCE Health Care Without Harm

Anuga, the Fair

Anuga, the world´s leading food fair for the retail trade and the food service and catering market, will take place in Cologne (Germany) from next October 8 to 12. My scheduled attendance has been cancelled because I have been urgently required to fly to Dubai to discuss new DESITA and ECOFFEE projects.  As I wrote to all those who contacted me privately to set up meetings at Anuga, I will be more than happy to meet you during the upcoming events, just contact me at norman|at|ecoffee.it

Anuga this year this fair is expected to be very interesting not only for the many – 6.500- exhibitors but for the collateral events that will take place during the 4 days. I am particularly interested in the Wellfood Forum – showcasing the latest trends and the newest developments from all over the world in the areas of Wellfood and Functional Food – and the Fully Organic Special Show.

Organic foods will be expertly presented for the fourth time since Anuga 2003, in cooperation with the editors of bioPress. In addition to the approximately 1,600 exhibitors offering organic products and the more than 300 exhibitors of exclusively organic products in the Anuga Organic hall, visitors will also find more than 2,000 organic products for the food retail trade concentrated in the “Fully Organic” special show.

“Fully Organic” is now becoming the future agenda of food retail traders. And nothing reflects the latest developments in the organic product range of the retail food trade as clearly as the special show at Anuga Organic.

I will follow the Anuga Fair via web, but feel free to comment, send updates and news regarding the show posting comments on this post. Thank you!

Food displays in 800 co-op stores get Nualight LED lighting

A multi-million dollar deal has been recently signed between Co-op UK and Nualight,  a specialist in LED lighting for the food retail sector,  to install its LED lighting in freezers and ice-cream cabinets throughout 800 UK-based stores owned by the Co-operative Group.  LED lighting will be installed in the doors in low-temperature merchandising cabinets and in ice-cream display cabinets throughout the stores.

Liam Kelly, CEO of Nualight said, “Our lighting delivers significant energy savings of over 70% when compared with fluorescent technology and it is also maintenance-free. We’re delighted that our technology can play an important part in The Co-operative Group’s ambitious ethos of responsible retailing.”

“The motivation for introducing Nualight’s LED lighting solutions to our stores arose primarily from our unique commitment to sustainable retailing practices,” explained Alex Pitman, Energy and Carbon Manager at the Co-operative Group.

The Co-operative has over 3000 food stores and supermarkets around the UK. It focuses on quality with honest, ethically sourced products and has an ambitious Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) program. A survey in 2008 found The Co-operative to be Britain’s greenest supermarket. The company has the toughest carbon reduction targets of any major business in the UK. (Source: LEDsmagazine.com)

 

 

Welcome to the Organic Academy among ECOFFEE’s partners!

I am glad to announce that another great partnership has been recently signed between ECOFFEE by DESITA and the Italian leading project about Culinary Knowledge and Environmental Respect, the Organic Academy.

The Organic Academy is based on the foundations of a respect and nurturing of one’s self, others, and the surrounding Nature, which can be found also in its willingness to elevate the vegetarian cuisine to its best thanks to the incredible receipts of Executive Chef Simone Salvini, whose amazing curriculum shows experiences at the Joia Restaurants (Michelin starred), at the Italian Camera dei Deputati (Parliament) and at the Italian Association of Vegetarians.

The Organic Academy is supervised by Chef Pietro Leeman, Joia restaurant owner.

This respect and nurturing is also manifested by development and practice of culinary arts, nutrition, and hospitality, development skillfully managed by Organic Academy’s Managing Director, Enrico Buselli, successful restaurant owner and sustainable tourism consultant.

ECOFFEE and the Organic Academy are also collaborating to develop the Organic Bistrot, following the ECOFFEE’s protocol.

I am sure that this partnership will lead to great innovative –and delicious- projects having sustainability at its core!

Stockholm hosting the upcoming FCSI Europe–Africa–Middle East Conference

Next September, from 16th to 18th, 2011 Stockholm, the very first Green Capital  will host the FCSI Europe–Africa–Middle East Conference.

Stockholm has been chosen by FCSI for its long-term target green policy, set to make the Swedish capital a fossil fuel free city by 2050.
The Conference speakers are highly recommended and the opening keynote speaker has been awarded speaker of the year 2009.
The program will be of course focused on the relation between sustainability and the Food industry, dealing with important subjects such as “Water and Waste. About water footprints and solutions to global water crisis. Solutions to the lack of sanitation”. Attendees will also have the chance to participate to interesting workshops such as “Food for thought on climate change: Saving our planet one carbon bite at a time!” or “ Why should a SPA be “green”.

Unfortunately, because of previously planned meetings, I will not be able to attend the Conference but I am sure it will be a great successful event and I wish to our FCSI Italia President Mr. Luciano Cattaneo a nice, enjoyable and profitable journey- feedbacks and updates about the Congress are welcomed!.

I also would like to remind all the FCSI members visiting the Milan HOST exhibition (October 21st – 25th ) that FCSI Italia will welcome all of you at Stand A03-C02 – Hall6.

Fairtrade Italia and ECOFFEE: a sustainable partnership for a better future

I am very happy to announce that last Tuesday, July 19th DESITA and Fairtrade Italia have signed a bilateral agreement providing mutual support for the dissemination of the principles of environmental sustainability, fair trade and social responsibility on the entire Italian market  through a focus on in-store actions.

DESITA, thanks to its ECOFFEE project, will promote Fairtrade products and will support  Fairtrade licensees through its wide range of retail-oriented services and solutions: from architectural design, branding, process analysis, franchise creation. The Fairtrade certified products will also find a privileged placement among the products available at the ECOFFEE franchise cafés.

On the other hand, Fairtrade Italia has committed to share with its stakeholders- Retail business licensees, Association members and consumers – all the services offered by DESITA and   ECOFFEE.

“I am very happy to have reached this agreement,” states Paolo Pastore, Managing Director of Fairtrade Italia “This agreement is very different from the usual one and I am  sure that it will bring a much wider scope and visibility to Fairtrade certified products, the only Fair Trade certification that has deserved consumers’ trust all around the world. “

Being supported by such an important organization as Fairtrade Italia has once again confirmed that what I have created, the ECOFFEE service platform, is a requirement for a better future.This gives me the strength to keep on working in what is still an immature industry, that of sustainability in the Italian Retail and Horeca panorama. I am convinced that this partnership will actually contribute to the creation and dissemination of a more responsible consumption on the Italian market.

A cool interactive system projects food onto restaurants diners’ plates

When dining at new restaurants, trying to select a meal from an unfamiliar menu can often place patrons in a quandary. A new projection system in London’s Inamo restaurant, however, hopes to alleviate some of this uncertainty by displaying images of meals on diners’ tables as they browse the menu.

The pan-Asian restaurant uses unique technology called E-table, which is designed to give patrons more “control over their dining experience”. Projectors are installed in the venue’s ceiling, which turn the tabletops into the equivalent of a computer monitor. Using a touch mousepad on the table, diners can navigate the interactive ordering system, with images of each meal being projected onto their plate as they browse the menu. The system also enables diners to place their orders themselves, change the pattern of the projection to function as a virtual tablecloth, view a live webcam feed of the kitchen, play games with other diners, find out more about what’s happening the neighborhood, and order taxis. A video with Inamo co-creator Noel Hunwick can be viewed below:

The versatility of the system means there is plenty of potential here both to make the dining experience more entertaining and immediate, as well as for sponsorship and themed events and launches. Whilst we’ve seen numerous restaurants create apps and install tablets on-site, Inamo have bucked that trend to create a dining experience that is truly unique. Food for thought! (Source: Springwise)

Coffee and tea drinking habits in Asia: when culture matters.

Evening drinking habits differ from country to country, and this is very important when creating customer-centric food Retail concepts, as our DESITA and ECOFFEE projects are. In Singapore, for example it’s not unusual to see coffee shops packed at 11pm/12 midnight every night of the week including weekends. This experience is replicated across many countries in the region from India to Malaysia, Vietnam to Indonesia.

The culture of drinking in Asia is not about alcohol it’s about coffee and tea. It’s still about friends but it’s sober conversation as oppose to drunken ones. There are more coffee shops in Singapore than bars. Coffee shops are growing at a faster rate in India than any other form of F&B outlet. This appears to be down to more affluence, a desire to eat and drink out and a predominantly non-drinking culture. Of course there are a mass of bars in Singapore and across Asia but these tend to be filled with expats and Chinese and focused on certain areas and linked to Karaoke.

Religiously Muslims, Hindus and Buddhists – the main religions across the region – actively prescribe non-drinking of alcohol to their followers. Singaporean’s are just not brought up to get drunk in the way their English and American counterpart’s inparticular are. This in turn leads to a more civilized society, there are no drink related injuries for hospitals to deal with and society to pay for. There is not the violence that happens every weekend in most towns in the UK, no alcohol means that it just doesn’t happen, it’s just not accepted and not desired.

From a marketing point of view it means that if you want to target these people you have to think in a more sophisticated and creative way. Starbucks may be much maligned but they, Costa and other Western brands are growing in Asia at a rate of knots and along with the monster Asia coffee brands like Gloria Jean’s,Café Coffee Day and Coffee Bean are more effective at reaching many Asians than marketing through bars and alcohol. (Source: BrandRepublic; Picture: 4theloveoffood).

Green Certification Awarded to French Supermarket in China

China Certification & Inspection Group has reportedly issued the Green Market Certification to Carrefour’s six stores in Beijing, making the French supermarket one of the first retailers to gain the certification in the Beijing region.

20110607-135536.jpg

Liu Shengming, chairman of CCIC, told local media that the Green Market Certification has been fully launched in the retail sector of Beijing. Green Market Certification is a national certification system co-developed by the Ministry of Commerce together with the Certification & Accreditation Administration of China. Organizations that have obtained the Green Market Certification are allowed to use the uniform certification board. The Green Market Certification logo can be used in their marketing materials or other relevant information.

Luc Vandevelde, chairman of the Supervisory Board of Carrefour, has revealed the plan for Carrefour’s first green shopping center, where rainwater and energy can be recycled. Compared with a regular architecture, the green shopping center can save up to 30% in water and energy. In addition, it will use efficient materials to reduce the consumption of resources.

China Certification & Inspection Group, Shenzhen Company Ltd. operates a wide network of over 300 offices and laboratories which are located in major ports and cargo distribution centers around the world. With over 20 years’ experience in the inspection and certification field, CCIC has established cooperation relationships with more than 120 inspection and certification companies in over 60 countries and regions, including foreign organizations such as UL, CSA, and TUV Rhineland.(Source: China Sourcing News)

Social responsibility, food and Government: the responsibility deal

The responsibility deal signed by the UK governement, backed by 170 companies such as Tesco, Unilever, Sainsbury’s, Carlsberg and Mars and Diageo, is going to rise a lot of controversy for a long time.

A key pledge outlined in the deal is the development of a new sponsorship code on responsible drinking while McDonald’s, Pizza Hut and KFC have agreed to place calories on their menus from September this year.

Other pledges include:
– Reducing salt in food so people eat 1g less per day by the end of 2012
– Removal of artificial trans-fats by the end of the year
– Rolling out Change4Life branding to 1,000 convenience stores

Achieving clear unit labelling on more than 80% of alcohol by 2013 is also pledged but this was a commitment made last year by drinks brands under work initiated by the last government.

Health secretary Andrew Lansley said: ‘Public health is everyone’s responsibility and there is a role for all of us, working in partnership, to tackle these challenges.’ He claimed that regulation is ‘costly and is often only determined at an EU-wide level anyway’.

ISBA’s director of public affairs Ian Twinn also adds “It has also been inclusive – businesses have volunteered to reinforce public health through their product development and marketing and health pressure groups have pledged to contribute through their campaigning activities.

The responsibility deal seems a great step toward the introduction of a more socially responsible fast-food industry, but not all the companies do have the same advise. Cafe Rouge, Bella Italia and Strada are expected to follow Subway and PizzaExpress by not signing up to the government’s health initiative. Subway, which already provides calorie counts on in-store posters, said the scheme was unsuitable for its stores. It is conducting a trial intended to establish the most effective way of displaying the information.

Meanwhile, a PizzaExpress source argued that displaying calorie levels is not consumer-friendly and clutters its menus.

One factor that will no doubt deter businesses, particularly smaller inde-pendents, is the costs involved. London restaurant chain The Real Greek says that, on average, it costs about £100 to test and certify each dish.

Being one of the first to make a move has its risks, not least the fear of being criticized in the press for selling high-calorie-content food. On the other side, being part of a movement that gives consumers greater transparency can deliver positive press coverage.

Toby Southgate, managing director of branding agency The Brand Union, believes the risks are worth taking. ‘Those brands that adopt early could win out, provided they handle the move carefully,’ he says.

Southgate cites McDonald’s, which has made efforts to ‘re-educate’ its con-sumers about healthier eating, arguing that disclosing calories on its menu board could provide incentive to consumption. (Source: BrandRepublic)