Forward Food

Creating healthy, sustainable menu options

Humane Society International

  • Culinary training taking place at Magdalene College, University of Cambridge. HSI

  • Jenny Chandler presenting plant-based products to chefs from BaxterStory. Claire Bass/HSI UK

  • One of the delicious dishes created at a culinary workshop at CompassGroup UK/Ireland. HSI

  • Chefs from Compass Group UK & Ireland showcase their creativity. HSI/Helen Harwatt

What is Forward Food?

Each day, millions of meals are eaten by millions of customers up and down the country, in hospitals, educational establishments, workplace restaurants and food courts. Forward Food is a campaign to encourage and enable the catering industry to shift the focus of menus away from meals centered primarily on animal products and put more plant-based food on plates.

Working with foodservice providers is incredibly important, because reducing the amount of meat and other animal products that are bought and served is critical if we are to make the global food system more sustainable.

Serving fewer animal products and more plant-based meals will help combat climate change and conserve precious planetary resources such as water. It will also benefit people’s general health and wellness. And, of course, serving less meat, eggs and dairy will help to spare animals from suffering in factory farms, creating a more healthy and humane world for all.

Participating in Forward Food is not only good for people, planet and animals – it’s also good for business. Everyone can eat and enjoy plant-based food regardless of their dietary requirements (health, ethical or religious), so making menus more plant-focused makes them more inclusive. It can also help to reduce costs, because nutritious meat-free foods such as fresh vegetables, grains and pulses are cheaper than animal products.

In its broader communication to the public, Humane Society International advocates compassionate eating – or the Three Rs: “reducing” or “replacing” consumption of animal products with plant-based foods, and “refining” our diets by avoiding products from farms with abusive practices, such as the confinement of hens in cages and choosing products from sources that adhere to higher animal welfare standards.

What services do we offer?

Plant-based culinary training & support

  • A one- or two-day workshop in partnership with renowned chef and author Jenny Chandler.
  • A portfolio of plant-based recipes, which can be tailored according to specific dining establishment needs.
  • Advice on menu presentation and dining hall display, plus on- and offline marketing materials.
  • Information on sourcing plant-based products.

Sustainability analysis and reporting

  • Assistance with a strategy to integrate meat reduction interventions into sustainability plans and targets.
  • Monitoring and evaluation of, and reporting on, the impact menu changes have on greenhouse gas emissions.
  • Guest presentation on sustainable and healthy food systems (from our research and sustainable food policy advisor and published scientific author, Dr Helen Harwatt).

What have participants said about Forward Food?

‘The two days went well! All the chefs who attended really enjoyed the experience and gained some good insights from the course.’ -Nick Vadis, Culinary Director, Compass Group UK & Ireland

‘The day was excellent—all of the guys took a huge amount from it.’ -Rik Razza, Head of Chef Development, BaxterStorey

‘The senior sous chef said that the course was very good and that he had learnt a lot from it.’ -Lee Corke, Catering Manager, Clare College, University of Cambridge

‘Sarah thoroughly enjoyed it and has come in enthused. I look forward to more courses, as other staff are also keen.’ -Rob Clarke, Head of Catering & Events, Fitzwilliam College, University of Cambridge

Interested in learning more?

Email with questions or to get involved.

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