In this edition of 5 Things, Food Management highlights five things you may have missed recently about developments affecting onsite dining.
Here’s your list for today:
1. Sodexo Campus commits to 50% plant-based menu by 2025
Sodexo's Campus division is increasing its commitment of plant-based planned menus to 50% by 2025 after its internal analysis has shown that at least 70% of the company’s U.S. supply carbon footprint was related to animal-based food purchases in fiscal year 2020. Today’s college students are especially attuned to the environmental and physical benefits of plant-based eating, with 37% of Gen Z expressing an interest in eating more plant-based and meat-free foods, according to a 2020 GlobeScan study. Currently, 36% of Sodexo Campus’ menus are plant-based.
Read more: Sodexo Campus commits to 50% plant-based menu by 2025
2. Elior North America releases Social & Environmental Responsibility Report
Elior North America has launched its first-ever social and environmental responsibility report, which outlines its goals and performance in the areas of people, wellness, food and planet. Highlights of the report include noting that the company currently works with over 200 Minority/Women Business Enterprise (M/WBE) Certified supplier partners, that it scored an A grade in the Humane Society of the United States’ 2022 Protein Sustainability Progress Report and that it served 57,000 pounds of local produce in 2022 while diverting 91 tons of food waste away from landfills.
In other company news, Elior North America's Paris-based parent, Elior Group, announced that its shareholders have approved the previously announced merger with Derichebourg Multiservices to form one of the largest world's largest contract catering and multiservices firms. The combined company plans to offer a complete range of services to companies and public authorities in the areas of contract catering, soft facility management (cleaning, reception, green areas), hard facility management (energy efficiency, public lighting), security, as well as HR and temporary staffing services and subcontracting in aeronautics.
Read more: Elior North America Publishes Inaugural Social & Environmental Responsibility Report and Creation of a new international leader in contract catering and multiservices
3. NYC Mayor lauds city hospitals’ plant-based meals program
New York City Mayor Eric Adams applauded New York City hospitals for feeding patients plant-based meals in lieu of meat by default, claiming "what we eat is impacting our entire planet" as the health care system is apparently leading the charge in the administration's climate change initiatives to reduce carbon emissions. "It is easy to talk about the emissions that's coming from buildings and how it impacts our environment, but we now have to talk about beef," Adams said of his greens for green initiative at a press conference at New York City Health + Hospitals Culinary Center in Brooklyn. "And I don't know if people are really ready for this conversation. And we can't have a level of hypocrisy where we want to ensure that we do local laws to address the emissions that's come from fossil fuel, but not willing to have a real conversation on what food is doing to us."
Read more: Adams applauds NYC hospitals for feeding patients plant-based meals over meat by default in climate push
4. UMN pilots late night meal program
The Undergraduate Student Government (USG) has worked with the University of Minnesota to implement a two-week pilot program giving students living in residence halls access to prepackaged meals after dining halls have closed. The goal of the pilot program is to find out how many people utilize the late-night dining option, gather data on what meal options are most popular and get student feedback on the program, according to Gurasis Singh, a USG at-large representative who led the effort.
Read more: Late Night Dining Initiative increases food access
5. Colorado moves forward with Healthy School Meals for All initiative
The Colorado State Board of Education has approved rules required to implement the voter-approved Healthy School Meals for All program that will offer free meals to all students at districts opting in. The program also offers additional funding for districts to purchase local foods for school meals and to increase wages or provide stipends to school kitchen employees.
Read more: State Board of Education approves rules for implementing Healthy School Meals for All
Bonus: Food Management’s 2023 Top 50 Contract Management Companies in education, healthcare, business and sports/entertainment venues
Contact Mike Buzalka at [email protected]