HCWH Europe launch Healthy & Sustainable Food in Healthcare Pledge

Oct 25, 2016

Two days after World Food Day 2016, on Tuesday 18th October, Health Care Without Harm (HCWH) Europe organised the first ever European Workshop on Sustainable and Healthy Food in healthcare. The workshop was held as part of CleanMed Europe, Europe’s leading conference on sustainable healthcare.

The workshop was hosted by the Gentofte Hospital in Copenhagen, a very progressive hospital in the procurement of fresh, seasonal, and organic food, and in the management and reduction of food waste. The workshop focused on sharing best practices between European and international hospitals and on showcasing national research programmes to develop food waste prevention and reduction methodologies.

The Gentofte Hospital has 2,418 staff members and 227 beds, welcoming approximately 20,000 inpatients and 200,000 outpatients per year, and serving about 328,500 meals annually. By purchasing fresh and seasonal food produced exclusively in Denmark and by preparing meals on-site, the hospital kitchen is practising a sustainable food policy.

During the workshop HCWH Europe launched its Healthy and Sustainable Food in Healthcare Pledge, which was signed at the workshop by Gentofte Hospital and Herlev Hospital from Copenhagen who have recently merged

HCWH Europe's Healthy and Sustainable Food in Healthcare Pledge is modelled on the HCWH US & Canada's Healthy Food in Health Care Pledge, which started 10 years ago and has been supported by over 500 hospitals and healthcare facilities across the US and Canada.

By signing the pledge, European hospitals commit to:

  • Improve the quality of the food they serve by procuring fresh, local, seasonal and organic food, as much as possible, to patients, staff and visitors.

  • Offer more plant-derived food.

  • Shorten the supply chain and strengthen the local economy.

  • Prevent and decrease food waste and explore other alternatives.

  • Raise awareness among healthcare professionals, patients and communities about the link between healthy and sustainable food in order to ensure a more resilient food system.

  • Influence and engage other actors to work towards better standards of food procurement while promoting healthy and sustainable habits and practices within and outside the healthcare sector.

The European healthcare sector still faces quite a few challenges in implementing sustainable and healthy food policies, including preventing and reducing food waste at their facilities. However, these challenges can be seen as opportunities for the sector to centre food at the heart of healing.

Join Gentofte and Herlev Hospital in making a commitment to healthy and sustainable food by signing HCWH Europe's Healthy & Sustainable Food in Healthcare pledge today 

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