Home Kitchen & Laundry Meeting the Demand for Vegan, Vegetarian Options

Meeting the Demand for Vegan, Vegetarian Options

Glenn Hasek

During my recent vacation in Ohio I had an opportunity to spend Christmas at a cousin’s house. Something was quite different this year. My cousin and his family had all become vegans. My cousin’s daughter had been having food allergy issues for quite some time and had become a vegan, so to make things easy the entire family switched diets.

More than a year ago my wife had half of a cancerous thyroid removed. Thankfully, she is doing fine now and is cancer free. What she has noticed since the surgery is that her body reacts differently to certain types of food—food with gluten in it, for example. It has not been confirmed yet, but we suspect she has developed some type of allergy to gluten.

If your property serves food I am sure you frequently get special requests from folks in situations similar to those described above.

Thanks to information released this past week by hotel management company Interstate Hotels & Resorts, because of the generational change driven by Millennials, the passion for vegetarian and vegan meals has progressed rapidly, with a 350 percent increase in the number of people consuming a plant-based diet within the last decade. More consumers today look to meat-alternative options for reasons supporting health and wellness, the environment, and animal welfare.

Vegetarian & Vegan Culinary Promotion Launched

Interstate Hotels & Resorts just announced the launch of its Vegetarian & Vegan culinary promotion for its managed hotels. This promotion meets the needs of today’s travelers for healthier eating through plant-based diets, incorporating high quality vegetarian and vegan lunch and dinner entrees in restaurants and banquets across its full-service hotels. Interstate created 27 new vegetarian and vegan menu items for this promotion, which launched on January 1.

“We recognized a shift in the growing demand of consumers craving healthier options and it is our job to cater to the desires of our guests and meeting attendees,” said Interstate’s V.P. of Food & Beverage Operations, Bradley Moore. “There is a clear need to offer plant-based menu items and we are thrilled about the quality, variety and benefits our hotels will be able to provide to travelers seeking healthy alternatives while on the road.”

Similarly, Six Senses Hotels Resorts Spas recently launched Eat With Six Senses. It is based on the guiding principles of natural ingredients, local and sustainable, and less is more. Six Senses chefs focus on quality, balance and fresh whole food made from scratch. Chefs indulge their love for hearty and healthy menus full of color and taste, while unapologetically avoiding the bad stuff (flavor enhancers, lectins, lactose, gluten and sugar). Instead they choose the ingredients and preparation methods that promote a healthy microbiome (the trillions of tiny gut buddies living in the body) to offer better digestion and absorption of nutrients while boosting the immune system.

Commitment to Local Farmers, Suppliers Reinforced

As part of Eat With Six Senses, each Six Senses resort is reinforcing its relationships with local farmers, producers and suppliers, who are committed to responsible sourcing and seasonality. Imported seafood could be farm raised with antibiotics and growth hormones. By working closely with local producers, Six Senses is assuring that ethical practices in raising animals and avoiding at-risk species are adhered to. Even closer to home, each Six Senses resort cultivates its own organic vegetable garden, one property already has its own free-range chicken farm to supply fresh eggs and two resorts have established mushroom huts.

Produce that has traveled a long distance is often gassed, irradiated and preserved with wax or exposed to toxic packaging. At Six Senses, the energy footprint of importing branded drinking water has been eliminated with each resort having its own reverse osmosis plant to produce top quality still and sparkling mineralized water, which is provided to guests in re-usable glass bottles.

According to Dr. Steven Gundry, American cardiac surgeon and founder of The Center for Restorative Medicine, “With the introduction of Eat With Six Senses, guests not only eat well, they feel better. They are also supported with valuable tools and information to help them make positive lasting life adjustments. To put it in a nutshell, Six Senses want guests to leave feeling better than when they arrived.”

Eat With Six Senses will also have a positive outcome for the resort’s hosts, as the philosophy will be implemented in all restaurants. It will create an internal culture of health and wellness through healthier meal choices as well as providing knowledge to support the well-being of hosts and their families.

Green Lodging News Adds Stern Engineering, Verdafero as Directory Partners

Green Lodging News welcomes Stern Engineering as a Green Product & Service Directory partner. Stern’s Touch-Free Electronic Faucets are operated by infrared sensor and automatically activate when users place their hands within the sensor range, providing cold or premixed water. The water efficient, touch free faucets automatically shut down after being used for more than 90 seconds. The faucets combine minimalistic designs with high quality materials to ensure washrooms remain hygienic, safe, cost efficient and sustainable. Customizable functions with optional remote control are sensor range, security time, delay in, delay out, on-off and reset to factory settings.

Stern also offers Touch Free Electronic Soap Dispensers. Stern’s Touch-Free Electronic Soap Dispensers are operated by infrared sensor and automatically activate when users place their hands within the sensor range, providing a measured soap dosage while preventing cross contamination. If the user removes their hands from within sensor range before the full dosage is dispensed, the soap dispenser immediately deactivates, ending waste. Any non-proprietary liquid soap, at the recommended viscosity, can be used, saving money. Customizable functions with optional remote control are soap dosage, soap tank refill, temporary off and reset to factory settings. Contact Stern at stern@sternfaucets.com.

Verdafero—Energy Efficiency Consulting is a professional energy efficiency auditing and property benchmarking firm with 10+ years of experience working with hospitality owner/operators to reduce operational costs and increase asset value through energy efficiency. Verdafero provides varying levels of fully documented energy audits/surveys or energy benchmarking services for use during the asset acquisition, operations and disposal process for maximum value. From a low-level energy survey to a detailed building audit the company’s experienced professional engineers can audit a building and provide in-depth reports with full financial analysis of each Energy Conservation Measure (ECM) so that one can make informed decisions based on “real-world” operational findings as well as project management services.

MyVerdafero—Utility Analytics Platform is an easy to use cloud-based software platform developed to provide hospitality owner/operators with the valuable insights they need to make informed decisions during the asset acquisition, operations and disposal process. Specifically designed for the hospitality industry, Verdafero runs automatic billing analysis on every bill for errors, helps identify saving opportunities and alerts one to problem areas within a single property or across multiple properties and multiple utilities (electric, gas, water usage, waste streams) while calculating real-time accurate CO2 calculations for the Hotel Carbon Measurement Initiative (HCMI) reporting. Call (650) 206-2441 for more information.

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Who is Your Sustainability Champion?

Green Lodging News is always looking to profile sustainability champions in our Personnel Profile section. If you would like to nominate someone for this section of Green Lodging News, contact me at (813) 510-3868, or by e-mail at editor@greenlodgingnews.com.

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Every two weeks Green Lodging News posts a new guest column on its website. (Click here for examples.) The guest column also appears in the weekly e-newsletter. Green Lodging News is currently in need of industry experts to contribute occasional guest columns. Experts may include consultants, architects, designers, suppliers and those who own or operate green lodging establishments. Columns may be articles that take a stance on a particular subject or be strictly educational in nature. Columnists benefit by having their photo included along with a one paragraph description of their company. Interested in writing a column? Contact Glenn Hasek, publisher and editor, at (813) 510-3868, or by e-mail at editor@greenlodgingnews.com.

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