The Culinary Institute of America

A "GPS" to the Future of Food Mapped at Menus of Change™

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Media Contact:

Jan Smyth
Marketing Manager—Industry Leadership & Advancement
845-451-1457
j_smyth@culinary.edu

Cambridge, MA – Attendees at the first annual Menus of Change leadership summit, which opened yesterday in Cambridge, MA, are examining the future of food and the challenges facing our country in terms of health, health care, and our food systems. Co-presented by The Culinary Institute of America (CIA) and Harvard School of Public Health (HSPH), Department of Nutrition, the Menus of Change program and accompanying annual report, released today, provide a "GPS" for today's foodservice executives at a time when the food industry is being reshaped by concerns about obesity and health care costs, how food is produced and sourced, and declining global resources.

"It has been exciting to see the leaders from different sectors—foodservice, the environment, nutrition science, and business—interact with such drive and commitment," said Dr. Tim Ryan, president of the CIA. "Menus of Change is helping them find common ground at the intersection of some of the most pervasive issues that face our industry and our world, and we are setting a meaningful course of action toward solutions."

During the conference, experts in foodservice, health science, and social change are presenting information on topics relevant to what today's health- and environmentally-conscious consumers expect from corporations, foodservice operators, and business leaders:

  • "Connecting Culinary Excellence with Social Responsibility,"
    with Simon Marshall (Unilever Food Solutions); Nicki Briggs, MS, RD (Chobani); Harvey Hartman (The Hartman Group); and Michael Kaufman (Centerplate Restaurant Group)
  • "Technology, Investment, and Innovation and the Future of Food,"
    with Will Rosenzweig (Physic Ventures); Stephanie Chenevert (Google Food Services); Christy Consler (Jamba Juice); David Feller (Yummly); Danielle Gould (Food + Tech Connect); Ellen Kennedy (Calvert Investments); and Anthony Zolezzi (Pegasus Capital Advisors)
  • "Developing the Next Generation for Health, Sustainability, and Leadership,"
    with Gail Christopher, DN (W. K. Kellogg Foundation); Tim Ryan, EdD, CMC (CIA); and Julio Frenk, MD (HSPH)

The highlight of the three-day conference was the much-anticipated release of the Menus of Change Annual Report this morning, which includes an analysis of 13 issues at the convergence of public health, the environment, and the business of food. Developed in collaboration with leading scientists and business experts—the initiative's Scientific and Technical Advisory Council (chaired by Walter Willett, MD, DrPH of the HSPH Department of Nutrition) and Sustainable Business Leadership Council—the report provides groundbreaking, evidence-based strategies for foodservice executives. Its "Principles of Healthy, Sustainable Menus" section gives business leaders unprecedented guidance to navigate game-changing food-related issues.

"This first report presents the base and structure for the viable tracking of dietary quality in America," said Dr. Willett. "We will continue to research, review, and report on these important health and environmental issues, explore strategies, and offer promising solutions to food-linked environmental challenges, unacceptably high obesity and chronic disease rates, and other public health imperatives."

The Menus of Change Annual Report is available on www.menusofchange.org. Additional presentations from the conference will be posted over the next month.

Representatives from organizations as diverse as Panera Bread and New York Presbyterian Hospital, Darden Restaurants and Oregon State University, and McDonald's and Monterey Bay Aquarium are exploring opportunities for their future business success with sector leaders during break-out discussion sessions:

  • Putting more seafood on the plate while keeping more fish in the sea
  • The shifting role of proteins
  • Filling half the plate with fruits and vegetables
  • The challenges of protein size, calories, and sugar-sweetened beverages

"Many companies consider health, environmental issues, and business success separately," said Arlin Wasserman, chair of the Menus of Change Sustainable Business Leadership Council and founder of Changing Tastes. "The dialogue among top executives thus far at our first summit shows that the most meaningful innovation takes place when all three are considered as a whole. Embedding that view into the culinary profession over the coming years will be critical for accelerating the pace of change."

The highlight of the three-day conference was the much-anticipated release of the Menus of Change Annual Report, which includes an analysis of 13 issues at the convergence of public health, the environment, and the business of food. Developed in collaboration with leading scientists and business experts—the initiative's Scientific and Technical Advisory Council (chaired by Walter Willett, MD, DrPH of the HSPH Department of Nutrition) and Sustainable Business Leadership Council—the report provides groundbreaking, evidence-based strategies.

The 2014 Menus of Change conference will be held June 9–11, again at The Charles Hotel in Cambridge. Registration opens September 3, 2013 on www.menusofchange.org.


Photo Captions and Hi-Res Images

Certified Culinary Nutritionist Kristy Lambrou and Executive Chef Jeremy Bearman, both of Rouge Tomate restaurant in New York City, prepare Mushroom Farratto at The Culinary Institute of America's first Menus of Change summit in Boston, MA on June 10, 2013. Farratto is similar to risotto but made with farro, a healthier grain. (Photo credit: CIA/Phil Mansfield)
View hi-res image >


About The Culinary Institute of America

Founded in 1946, The Culinary Institute of America is an independent, not-for-profit college offering associate and bachelor's degrees with majors in culinary arts, baking and pastry arts, and culinary science, as well as certificate programs in culinary arts and wine and beverage studies. As the world's premier culinary college, the CIA provides thought leadership in the areas of health & wellness, sustainability, and world cuisines & cultures through research and conferences. The CIA has a network of 45,000 alumni that includes industry leaders such as Grant Achatz, Anthony Bourdain, Roy Choi, Cat Cora, Dan Coudreaut, Steve Ells, Johnny Iuzzini, Charlie Palmer, and Roy Yamaguchi. The CIA also offers courses for professionals and enthusiasts, as well as consulting services in support of innovation for the foodservice and hospitality industry. The college has campuses in Hyde Park, NY; St. Helena, CA; San Antonio, TX; and Singapore.


About the Harvard School of Public Health

Harvard School of Public Health brings together dedicated experts from many disciplines to educate new generations of global health leaders and produce powerful ideas that improve the lives and health of people everywhere. As a community of leading scientists, educators, and students, we work together to take innovative ideas from the laboratory to people's lives—not only making scientific breakthroughs, but also working to change individual behaviors, public policies, and health care practices. Each year, more than 400 faculty members at HSPH teach 1,000-plus full-time students from around the world and train thousands more through online and executive education courses. Founded in 1913 as the Harvard-MIT School of Health Officers, the School is recognized as America's first professional training program in public health. For more information on the School, visit www.hsph.harvard.edu.

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