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News / 12.11.2021

Plant Forward on the menu for Steamplicity

Steamplicity, the innovative steam cooking system created by Compass Group UK & Ireland, has launched its Autumn/Winter menu, bringing a range of new dishes to thousands of patients across the UK, with a focus on plant forward options.

Steamplicity meals, created by development chefs and nutritionists, are served at over 20 NHS Trusts throughout the UK. Steamplicity uses a unique steam system, which cooks fresh and raw ingredients, on the ward, close to the patient in under five minutes, meaning that nutritional value is maximised, alongside offering mealtime flexibility and consistency.

The new menu has an increased focus on plant forward concepts, with 35% of meals catering for vegetarian or vegan diets - in line with patient demand and Compass’ Net Zero and NHS Food Review commitments. These new options include the introduction of the Vegan Shepherd’s Pie, using du berry lentils and mung beans; and Bean Chilli, served with wholegrain rice.

The Autumn/Winter menu provides 30 dishes across lunch and dinner, with highlights including Steamed Wild Salmon in Hollandaise Sauce and a Chickpea & Spinach Curry. The concepts continue to cater for a wide range of dietary requirements, which are essential in a hospital setting. The Steamplicity team has also reviewed the labelling of meals, making information clear and concise for patients and healthcare teams. 

Steve Cenci, MD – Healthcare, Compass Group UK & Ireland, said: “Our team of dedicated chefs and dietitians work side by side with our partners and patients to create tasty, nutritious meals. It’s imperative we cater for a wide range of tastes and requirements and this menu delivers on that, but also provides a more sustainable menu than ever before. Food may be the only thing that patients really look forward to in hospital, so it’s vital we provide a wide choice to inspire their recovery.”

Bruce Toon, Compass Group UK & Ireland, Healthcare – Head of Culinary, commented: Our meals are based on feedback and research - over the past few years reducing meat intake has become a lifestyle choice for many people, especially as we are all more conscious of food choices, from a health, locality, seasonal, ethical and environmental perspective. The menu caters for this growing demand, alongside keeping our more traditional favourites on the menu too.”

Compass recently announced that it is rolling out an innovative packaging system, which uses a circular closed loop recycling system for Steamplicity. The trays will now be manufactured in a different type of plastic, making it easier to recycle, and will ensure all the plastic trays used are returned to a dedicated recycling plant. This significantly reduces the need for virgin plastic for the 5 million meals served by the Steamplicity team every year.

The system is proven to reduce food waste – typical health setting food waste levels run at over 10%, with Steamplicity reducing waste to below 2.5% of the meal served. The steam cook technology also means less energy is used at site level.

Following Compass Group UK & Ireland’s commitment to climate Net Zero by 2030, it launched Our Climate Promise and Roadmap to Net Zero, to provide more detail on the strategy to create a sustainable food system. This includes a promise to use 100% reusable or recyclable packaging by 2023 and a 40% switch from animal proteins by 2030.

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