Fresh Ideas Food Service Management, a company that focuses on creating an exceptional fresh food dining experience, based in Columbia, Missouri, has received an “A” on the Humane Society of the United States’ Protein Sustainability Scorecard.
The goal of the scorecard is to establish what the nation’s largest food service companies are doing to obtain their goals to offer more plant-based meals and where they are on their sustainability journey. Participating companies completed a short survey focused on three main topics: transparency, goals and a plan of action to address their sustainability goals.
Fresh Ideas’ companywide commitment to showcasing plant-based proteins in its recipes and its collaboration with the HSUS on increasing plant-based menu options earned the company a third place spot on the scorecard. As part of its new, expansive line of entirely plant-based menu concepts, known as Mindful Fork, Fresh Ideas has committed that half of all menu offerings will be plant-based by 2025.
“As the first ever food service management company to make a robust commitment to plant-based menus, Fresh Ideas set off a much-needed domino effect for the rest of the industry. Without changing their menus to focus more on plant-based foods, food service companies cannot meet their sustainability targets,” said Kate Watts, manager of food service innovation for the HSUS. “The global food system is responsible for the mistreatment of billions of animals and a significant portion of greenhouse gas emissions. Plant-based foods have a smaller environmental footprint and their consumption reduces the number of animals suffering in intensive confinement systems. Transitioning half of all menus to be plant-based by 2025 should be a top priority for every food service company, and we’re pleased that Fresh Ideas is leading the way.”
In addition, Fresh Ideas has implemented several initiatives to increase and promote plant-based offerings, including:
- Implementing the 1:1 concept—offering one plant-based entree for every animal-based entree.
- Offering professional development opportunities to staff related to plant-based education, marketing, recipe development and culinary skills, including trainings where Fresh Ideas chefs receive plant-based menu training led by the HSUS.
- Providing plant-based education to customers and clients through blog posts, website and social media content, and virtual and in-person training.
Chef Carl Lovett, vice president of Culinary at Fresh Ideas, said, “Fresh Ideas believes in expanding flavor profiles, educating guests on new menu items and using plant-based ingredients to create delicious food for everyone. That is why we are so excited about our plant-based commitment and Mindful Fork concept.”