Even outside of Veganuary, growing numbers of people are asking for plant-based options in restaurants, cafes and workplace cafeterias. Many places around North Lancashire have already responded to this growing demand, and are offering interesting and tasty food options for all kinds of dietary preferences. On the other hand, many catering providers and chefs don’t feel confident to create plant-based dishes from scratch, or are unsure how they can use locally grown, sustainably produced ingredients to do so.

FoodFutures is proud to partner with Made in Hackney to host a training workshop for head chefs, procurement managers, community groups and leaders in food service provision in early February. Made in Hackney is the UK’s first and oldest vegan cookery school. They have 10 years experience in plant-based cooking, and educated over 100,000 people about the benefits of a plant-based diet through thousands of cookery classes. The workshop is part of Made in Hackney’s Plant Futures programme which aims to support organisations, businesses and civil society to move towards a more plant-centred eating approach.

This doesn’t necessarily have to mean going all vegan. Eating more plants is good for everyone’s health, and for catering providers in particular reducing the amount of animal-based products they serve can free up resources to source less and better meat, eggs and dairy.

All chefs and procurement managers who would like their workforce and clients to eat healthier, more sustainable diets and to grow their plant-based offering are invited to join the half-day training. The workshop is equally open to charities, community groups and volunteer chefs who run community cooking activities and would like to learn new skills around plant-based cooking. Even for those already offering a good range of plant-based options, the half-day workshop will provide new inspiration, recipe ideas and a plant-based toolkit to take home.

Participants will learn how to cook tasty and balanced plant-based dishes and how to create cheesy, meaty and fishy flavours without the use of any ingredients of animal origin. They will also learn more about how this can be done affordably, as eating better should be available to everyone. Success stories from the sector will be used to illustrate what’s possible in practice and to inspire participants.

By offering more plant-based options and increasing the amount of vegetables served, catering providers can attract new customers and provide a better experience to people with various dietary needs. 

Catering providers who are looking to increase their local, seasonal and sustainable sourcing can take a look at the local food directory or get in touch with the Closing Loops team.

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