Whitsons Culinary Group, which provides dining services to public schools in the Northeast US, has partnered with the Humane Society of the United States to introduce Veggabóls, a plant-based school meal program. As a part of Whitson’s commitment to offering at least 10% plant-based menus by 2024, Veggabóls are being piloted across 12 school districts this spring, with a full expansion possible in the fall.
“We applaud Whitsons for its work on plant-based foods”
Through Veggabóls, Whitsons is providing 10 healthy and sustainable recipes developed by HSUS’s team of chefs. The chefs modified several of Whitson’s most popular school lunch options to be fully plant-based, while creating brand new Veggabóls like Fiesta Rice and Beans and BBQ Chickpea and Rice.
To ensure a successful rollout, Whitsons and the HSUS plan to offer virtual culinary plant-based training for Whitsons’ pilot leads at all 12 school districts. They will also test new marketing materials, collect student feedback, and calculate the program’s greenhouse gas savings. Should the program prove successful, Whitsons intends to introduce Veggabóls to all of its school nutrition locations in Fall 2022.
A plant-based journey
Veggabóls marks the latest food service initiative for the Humane Society, which is also collaborating with catering giant Sodexo. In April, the two organizations partnered to make 42% of Sodexo’s university menus plant-based by 2025.
“Whitsons is pleased to be expanding our plant-based offerings through our new Veggabóls concept. It perfectly complements our Simply Rooted® philosophy of promoting wholesome foods, a healthy environment, and balanced diets,” said Kelly Friend, Chief Operating Officer of Whitsons.
She adds, “We started on our plant-based journey several years ago, with the Meatless Monday campaign, and now, with the support of HSUS, we are continuing to add to our menu offerings with these delicious and healthy new plant-based recipes that our student customers are sure to enjoy.”
“We applaud Whitsons for its work on plant-based foods and are looking forward to working together for years to come,” comments Kate Watts, Manager of Food Service Innovation with the Humane Society of the United States.