The CIA and Harvard Chan School Launched the Menus of Change initiative as a way to integrate a long-term practical vision for optimal nutrition, and public health, environmental stewardship and restoration, and social responsibility concerns within the foodservice industry and Culinary Profession. At its core is the 24 Principles of Healthy, Sustainable Menus which provide chefs and food service leaders with menu and recipe guidance for health and sustainability, along with business strategies that integrate both environmental and nutrition science imperatives. This Menus of Change guidance material is free for any institution to use and begin their journey towards sustainable nutritious and appetising menus.
The CIA also co-leads with Stanford University the Menus of Change University Research Collaborative (MCURC). This network involves a number of college and university foodservice and academic programmes across the United States and also includes the University of Reading and the University of Bristol who successively joined the MCURC after a very rigorous application process. The MCURC conducts research on multisectoral food systems, drawing on academic support from within the group to create and share strategies for implementing the 24 Menus of Change principles. Hospitality and catering at Reading now work very closely with a variety of their academic teams to provide their customers, students and staff menus which fully embrace the 24 principles.
If you are interested in joining the Menus of Change movement, you can start by benchmarking yourself against the 24 principles using their self-assessment tool:
Click on the image below to view the 24 principles:
We are encouraging TUCO members to pledge that they will adopt the Menus of Change principles (please note you do not necessarily need to adopt all 24) and share a contact so we can build a wider community of support within the membership. You can do this here:
Starting on this journey may feel complicated and a little overwhelming. There are a number of TUCO members who are at different points in their own MOC journey and we are building some training opportunities with the CIA. In the meantime you can review the following recommendations from the TUCO Menus of Change Steering group:
Issue Briefs to study and share
Menus of Change in Action guidance from institutions who have been through the process, their biggest obstacles and solutions to them!
If you have any queries or feedback, please contact Sarah Mcloughlin [email protected]