About the Pledge
We urge institutions and businesses to commit to transitioning 20% of their current, overall menus to plant-based.* This achievable and impactful goal demonstrates a strong commitment to better, more sustainable food, and helps you tell a story about your efforts to reduce your operation’s carbon footprint.
When you take the Forward Food pledge, you can take advantage of our free-of-charge services and resources. We will help you to make this target a reality, and work with you to get your customers excited about your new plant-based options. We offer:
- Menu and recipe development
- Plant-based culinary trainings for your team (available online and in-person when possible)
- Educational workshops about the sustainability, health and/or animal welfare benefits of plant-based foods
- Marketing tips and best practices
- Greenhouse gas emissions assessments
Take the Forward Food Pledge
Please contact Alex Wichert, program coordinator, at firstname.lastname@example.org to get started.
Frequently Asked Questions
*How do I measure progress towards the 20% target?
The 20% transition can be measured by the proportion or number of dishes you introduce that are 100% plant-based, or by the proportion of ingredients you purchase that are plant-based. We recommend the latter approach of measuring food procurement data because it accounts for any 100% plant-based new dishes you introduce, which contain no animal products or by-products, as well as new plant-forward dishes, which are mostly but not exclusively made from plants.
For example, if 50% of your overall ingredient purchases (by volume or weight) are already plant-based, we would work with you to increase that to 70%. Alternatively, if 10% of your menu (1 out of every 10 dishes) is currently 100% plant-based, we would work with you to increase that to 30% (3 out of every 10 dishes). We encourage institutions and businesses that sign onto the pledge to share select food procurement data with us, so that we can measure their progress and the environmental impact of any changes they make to their menus.
If my company or organization takes the pledge, does this mean we need to transition our menu to being completely plant-based or vegan?
No. While we think it would be great for all menus to be mostly plant-based, we recognize this is not always possible. Instead, we recommend a plant-forward approach to menuing. For example, you can make plant-based items the default on your menu, with options for adding animal protein, or change traditional meat-based dishes to use recipes that blend plant and animal proteins. This pledge is about putting more plants on the plate as recommended by the new Canada Food Guide, for our health, the planet and the animals we share it with.
What is the timeline for implementing the pledge?
The 20% commitment should be achieved by December 31, 2022.
What is the cost to participate?
Nothing! The only possible costs would be if you would like us to do an in-person culinary workshop, since that would require a small investment (to cover the cost of ingredients, your staff time, etc.).
What kind of support do I get access to?
Our team of culinary, sustainability and nutrition professionals will help you make your plant-based offerings a success. We offer culinary trainings, recipe and menu development, marketing support, educational content, and assistance with marketing.
What happens if I do not achieve the target?
We will do everything we can to help you reach the 20% goal by the end of 2022. If circumstances arise that prevent you from fulfilling the pledge, we can work with you to set a new goal and/or timeline.
Where can I learn more about what Forward Food does?
Please visit our main webpage to learn about our program and the services we offer.