Sustainability & Health: Making Change Happen

As a group, Menus of Change sponsors are driving important innovation in the foodservice industry. In their own words, here’s what a number of sponsors have told us are important, new developments to advance sustainability and health in their own companies, product lines, and growing/production practices.

Presenting Sponsor

Unilever’s purpose is ‘to make sustainable living commonplace.’ Under the Unilever Sustainable Living Plan, this is executed through three pillars: improving health and well-being, reducing our environmental impact, and enhancing livelihoods. We are working in partnerships where we can help create change on a global scale: deforestation, climate change, water, sanitation and hygiene, sustainable agriculture, and more.

At Unilever Food Solutions, we are focused on improving health and well-being by helping chefs make meals healthier through our service, Seductive Nutrition.  This service is focused on helping chefs create delicious meals that are more nutritious and have appealing menu descriptions. Learn more at

Platinum is actively working to increase the awareness and consumption of delicious and nutritious lentils in North America. High in protein and fiber, lentils are an economical and sustainable source of plant-based protein. Lentils, and other pulses, use less fertilizer and improve soil health by fixing nitrogen back into the soil during the growing process. Lentils and other pulses also have a low carbon footprint, are resilient in the face of climate change, and require relatively low water inputs. Working on behalf of growers who are committed to sustainable agricultural practices and respecting the environment, looks forward to supporting menu innovation using lentils. Learn more at

Premium Gold

  The Almond Board of California is committed to providing a safe and stable supply of almonds by supporting California’s community of more than 6,800 almond growers and their use of sustainable* agricultural practices that respect the environment, are economically viable, and protect their local communities. The California Almond community has invested more than $60 million to build a foundation of research on environmental, production, and other issues to continually evolve best practices and support almond sustainability. 

  Almonds’ powerful nutrient package makes them an ideal fit for plant-based, heart-healthy, weight-wise diets, and a deliciously easy way to snack—and eat—smarter.2 

  For more information on almonds and the Almond Board of California, visit

  * What defines California Almond sustainability? Sustainable almond farming utilizes production practices that are economically viable and are based upon scientific research, common sense, and a respect for the environment, neighbors, and employees. The result is a plentiful, nutritious, safe food product. 2 Scientific evidence suggests, but does not prove, that eating 1.5 ounces per day of most nuts, such as almonds, as part of a diet low in saturated fat and cholesterol may reduce the risk of heart disease.One serving of almonds (28g) has 13g of unsaturated fat and only 1g of saturated fat.


At Barilla, people and the planet have been at the center of our way of doing business for 140 years. We do it by trying to improve every day, from the field to the table. It starts with sustainable agriculture: working side-by-side with farmers carefully choosing raw materials, to make sure that they are good, high quality, and produced in ways that respect the people and the environment. We also source locally in the countries in which we produce: 80 percent of durum wheat and 100 percent of tomatoes, rye, and flour.We only choose suppliers that share our animal welfare values, with 80 percent of our eggs coming from cage-free chickens. We are committed to reducing our environmental impact: In the past five years we have reduced CO2 emissions by 23 percent and water consumption by 19 percent, and we intend to keep improving each year. For more information about Barilla’s sustainability efforts around the world, visit

Bush’s Best Beans is proud to be a sponsor of the Menus of Change Leadership Summit as well as its University Research Collaborative and continues to advocate for more inclusion of healthy, plant based proteins into the diets of all people. Beans are an excellent source of fiber and folate and also provide a good source of protein and nutrients such as manganese, magnesium, copper, iron, and potassium. Additionally, beans are an earth-friendly crop, requiring less water and fertilizer than many crops. Bush’s Best hopes to continue sharing helpful nutritional and sustainability information like this and expand upon the public knowledge of the benefits of the bean and pulse categories through the Menus of Change initiative.  For more information, please visit


Over 25 years ago, illy pioneered the direct trade model by cultivating personal, long-lasting relationships with the growers with whom it works. By working directly with coffee growers to produce the best of the best beans – purchasing them at prices substantially higher than market values—illy ensures the growers make a good profit. Through illy’s Università del Caffe, it provides hands-on instruction to our growers all over the world – helping them to develop skills and techniques, and to stay up-to-date on innovations in sustainability, all at no cost to the growers.

These partnerships are essential to illy – not just because they are the right thing to do, but also because they result in beans that are of unparalleled quality.

Land O’Lakes is a farmer owned co-op committed to creating better livelihoods, being good stewards of our natural resources, and building strong communities. Our conservation of land, water, and air with public and private partners is the foundation of creating high-quality dairy with fewer resources. From our entrepreneurial beginnings in 1921, Land O’Lakes has produced delicious, wholesome dairy products enjoyed by all. Our culinary team helps chefs keep an eye on flavor trends and transform classics into flavorful, satisfying dishes making healthful modifications to suit many diet requirements.

Learn more at

At The Wonderful Company, we’re passionate about growing high-quality, great-tasting fruit and nut products you’ve come to know and love. First and foremost, we’re growers. That means we control the land and have oversight over the entire process from planting to picking, from tree to table. We grow, market, and sell only wholesome, nutritious fruit, nuts, and beverages because we believe that what you put into your body matters.


The Alaska Seafood Marketing Institute (ASMI) is a public-private partnership between the state of Alaska and the Alaska seafood industry to promote its wild, natural, and sustainable seafood. ASMI works with foodservice operators to support their efforts to provide delicious, healthy, and sustainable meals to their customers. 

Wild Alaska seafood can boost health and wellness and is certified sustainable so you can feel good about serving it to your customers. ASMI works with fisheries scientists, chefs, nutritionists, dietitians, quality experts, and key industry influencers to stay on top of the latest seafood nutrition and culinary trends. ASMI is ready to help operators incorporate more seafood on the menu. 

Please visit for more information.

B&W Quality Growers embodies the truest testament to sustainability of all…the test of time. For over 145 years, caring for the land and people we depend on is at the heart of what B&W does every day.  The “Smart Farming” initiative yields healthy products grown sustainably and naturally. This includes seasonal farm rotation and utilizing water regeneration and recirculation systems that limit runoff to save our valuable water resources.

Watercress and arugula are members of the cruciferous vegetable family and are among the top 10 most nutritionally dense foods on the planet.”

Please visit for more information.

Chobani’s mission of “better food for more people” is a simple precept, but one that drives our company forward each day. As part of this commitment, sustainability has been embedded into the business since day one. From sourcing fresh milk from local dairies, to adopting technology in our manufacturing plants to be more efficient with our use of natural resources, we’re deeply committed to being a responsible steward of our environment and the communities where we live and work. 

The Chobani Nutrition Center is dedicated to positive nutrition that leads to happier, healthier lives. Its mission is to develop science-based tools to make good food choices actionable, relevant, and delicious. 

For more information, please visit

How we make our food is just as important as what we make. From the way our ingredients are grown to the recyclable materials used in our paperboard packaging, sustainability is a part of everything we do. It’s how we bring you all that tasty goodness while lightening the footprint we leave behind.  As the demand for global food resources grows, we remain focused on being part of a sustainable solution. Daiya is a delicious, plant-based solution that we believe is better for animal welfare, better for the future of our planet, and most importantly will make you feel better.

For more information, please visit

The Mushroom Council represents growers of cultivated mushrooms in the U.S., creating demand through education, promotion, and nutrition research. The Council plays a critical role in showcasing how mushrooms meet the culinary and nutrition challenges of today’s marketplace.

With the development of The Blend, in partnership with the CIA’s Healthy Menus R&D Collaborative, and the launch of The Blended Burger Project with James Beard Foundation, the Mushroom Council has created a movement that strives to make burgers, and other iconic foods, better by blending chopped mushrooms with ground meat—creating a more delicious, nutritious, and sustainable dish.

According to a new sustainability study, mushrooms are one of the most sustainable products grown in the U.S.

Go to for more information, fresh mushroom ideas, recipes and The Blend.

The National Peanut Board has helped America’s peanut farmers make dramatic improvements in environmentally favorable crop production practices by funding research – more than $21 million since 2000. As a result, farmers are increasing yields; growing more drought tolerant plant varieties with more efficient irrigation; using fewer pesticides, fungicides and other inputs; and using less energy.

For more information, please visit

The Northern Canola Growers Association (NCGA) is a canola grower represented commodity group. Based in Bismarck, ND, it represents approximately 90 percent of all canola grown in the US.

The focus of the NCGA is to promote healthy, environmentally sound, and sustainable canola. By promoting Best Management Practices, canola growers ensure the land is protected for future generations by limiting inputs and adoption of the latest technology. This allows canola producers to meet the need of the continued population growth in the world, while producing more pounds of healthy canola oil per acre.

Canola oil is heart-healthy and has less than half the saturated fat of olive or soybean oil and is made up of 11 percent omega-3 fatty acids. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) authorized a qualified health claim for canola oil’s ability to reduce the risk of heart disease when used in place of saturated fat.

Given the nutritional profile of canola oil, it is the right choice for consumers seeking to eat healthier and more sustainably.

Learn more at

Ocean Hugger Foods, Inc. was founded to offer delicious and healthy foods that celebrate the culinary traditions around seafood, while protecting our vulnerable oceans. Every day, countless tuna and other endangered fish species are harvested to feed growing demand. Using only natural ingredients, Ocean Hugger Foods elevates simple vegetables to provide the exquisite taste and texture seafood lovers yearn for. All of our products are entirely plant-based and suitable for vegetarians, pregnant women, nursing mothers, and anyone seeking an innovative and eco-friendly dining experience. Learn more about Ocean Hugger Foods and our commitment to health and sustainability at

Olive Oils from Spain is the promotional brand of The Spanish Olive Oil Interprofessional, which is a non-profit organization established by the entities representing the different operators in the olive oil industry (olive growers, cooperatives, factories, bottlers, and exporters), with the aim of serving as an industry improvement tool. We work to ensure that the greatest number of consumers around the world appreciate the quality of our oils, a quality that is linked to their origin in Spain. We drive and lead R&D programs with the aim of promoting innovation in the areas related to olive oil: sustainability, biodiversity, growth, processing, consumption, and, of course, health.

The distinctive “Jaén Selección,” created by the Diputación de Jaén, includes the best extra-virgin oils from each harvest. With this label being an indicator of excellence, “Jaén Selección” oils are a safe bet for sustainability of this unique growing region, a healthy diet, and gastronomic innovation.

Learn more at

Pinnacle Foods is committed to doing business in a way that reflects our shared values. We seek to make a difference in the communities where we live and work, while reducing our environmental footprint. As a leader in plant-based nutrition, Pinnacle is committed to closing the vegetable consumption gap that exists today among Americans. Gardein™ plant-based protein products have superior taste and texture that set them apart and are light on the planet. Birds Eye® vegetables help families eat more vegetables and fruit.  At our manufacturing facilities and corporate offices, as well as in our transportation and distribution operations, we aim to reduce our use of energy and water and decrease the volume of waste generated. We do this through efficiency improvements, network consolidation, best practices, and technological enhancements. To learn more about Pinnacle’s corporate responsibility practices, visit

Truitt Family Foods makes Foods that Make a Difference®. Our products are culinary-driven, shelf-stable, all natural, and include beans -the original plant-based protein- as the central ingredient. We strive torevolutionize the way we think about satisfying nutritional needs by bridging the gap between convenience, flavor, and sustainability. We will not compromise the synergistic relationships between our ingredients, sourcing, and people. We are committed to our family of employees, partners, farmers, and consumers through honesty, collaboration, and stewardship. Our passion for clean, healthful foods is a reflection of our belief that a better food system – from process to product – is the foundation of better living.

At Wayne Farms, we work with our customers to make healthy poultry products for the world’s largest brands. Sustainable practices and principle-based leadership guide decisions, ensuring superior product safety and quality. Since 1965, we’ve built a cultural foundation of integrity and excellence where customers are valued, employees championed, and communities supported.

We employ leading-edge practices, processes, and science to meld stringent animal welfare and nutritional standards with safety and quality principles. Our vertically-integrated approach begins with local farmers supplying our processing facilities and feed mills, letting us control quality from farm to fork.

To learn more about Wayne Farms’ commitment to making chicken amazing, visit