Increasing menu offerings that are healthy and sustainable, while also being exciting and delicious for customers is important to food service provider HHS, which is pledging to increase the number of plant-based options provided annually, with a target of reaching 20% plant-based menu items within the next two years.
The announcement comes after a trial run of a collaboration with the Humane Society of the United States’ professional chefs. Working together, the HSUS and HHS, which also offers a diverse set of support services for the healthcare, resort, senior living, government, aviation and education industries developed an innovative and sustainable plant-based menu program as part of HHS’ Global Bowls menu. This initiative, along with the company’s Meatless Monday program, launched last April at all HHS facilities across the United States. Both were a tremendous success with sales skyrocketing for the plant-based offerings.
Customers and staff tried dishes like the Bibimbap Bowl with seared tempeh over rice surrounded by a rainbow of fresh, seasonal vegetables and drizzled with gochujang sauce. In fact, the plant-based featured dishes sold out at many locations, including a hospital in Alaska.
“Every day, our chef-led teams prepare exceptional meals made from high quality, simple ingredients that are fresh, seasonal and sustainable. We seek out best-in-class recipes that provide delicious, nourishing and sustainable choices and increasing plant-based offerings was a natural fit,” says Dirk Notebloom, RD, president of operations and clinical nutrition services with HHS Culinary. “Through the pilot collaboration with the HSUS, we have seen firsthand that our guests are looking for more innovative plant-based dishes and we are committed to meeting that demand.”
The success of the plant-based initiative trial run gave HHS the launching point to announce its commitment to increase the number of plant-based offerings annually.
To support this commitment, the HSUS is excited to continue collaborating on innovative, chef-inspired plant-based recipe development. “By increasing plant-based offerings available to guests, initial data has shown people are more likely to choose these options. HHS proved offering dishes that are good for animals, good for the planet and good for health is also good for business,” says Karla Dumas, RDN, director of food service innovation with the Humane Society of the United States. “We applaud HHS for its work on plant-based foods and are looking forward to working together for years to come.”
Programs like Global Bowls align with HHS’ culinary philosophy and company mission of preparing meals that “guests crave using fresh, seasonal and sustainable ingredients that nourish and bring comfort to everyone served.”