The Partnership for a Healthier America (PHA), which works with the private sector and honorary chairwoman First Lady Michelle Obama to solve the nation’s childhood obesity crisis, announced today at its inaugural Building a Healthier Future Summit that it has partnered with Hyatt Hotels and Resorts, a leading global hospitality brand, to improve the nutritional profile of food menus at full-service managed Hyatt properties across the country.
Menus at all Hyatt hotels and resorts in the U.S. and Canada will be enhanced following the most recent U.S. Dietary Guidelines for Americans and the MyPlate federal guidance, which targets children’s menus. In the next year, Hyatt will implement adjustments to its children’s menus, such as offering fruits or vegetables as the default side item and making nonfat or low-fat milk available with free refills. The new children’s meals will meet MyPlate standards and will ensure that food illustrations on all menus depict healthier options.
In addition to Hyatt’s healthier approach toward children’s menus, the company is also committed to helping travelers stay healthy by making improvements to its full service restaurant menus and catering menus, with a significant emphasis on reducing calories, sugar and sodium content.
“Hyatt sets a new standard for leadership in the hospitality industry,” said Lawrence A. Soler, Chief Executive Officer of Partnership for a Healthier America. “In the last decade, Americans have spent about half of their families’ total food budgets, and consumed nearly a third of all their calories away from home. Making healthier options available wherever families are eating is critical in the fight against childhood obesity. Hyatt’s ability to impact nearly three million meals annually is a strong addition to PHA’s efforts to end childhood obesity.”
“We are honored and humbled to be recognized for our efforts to create healthier options for children at our hotels across the country,” said Chuck Floyd, Chief Operating Officer, North America, for Hyatt. “We frequently hear from our guests that it’s quite difficult to maintain a healthy lifestyle while on the road. We are committed to changing that, and by working with PHA, it gives us the momentum we need and moves us another step closer toward making a positive impact on the guests that we serve every day.”
Hyatt’s commitment to health and wellness is part of Hyatt’s global corporate responsibility program, Hyatt Thrive, which is creating programs that enhance the health and wellness of associates, neighbors and guests. These efforts range from promoting active lifestyles in the hotels to supporting programs that empower the people in Hyatt’s communities to live more healthy lives. Through Hyatt Thrive, the company’s operating philosophy focuses on delivering more healthful food and beverage choices, using fresh ingredients, and serving authentic dishes that are reflective of the local community and culinary heritage surrounding each hotel.
Hyatt has already made significant changes to its menus in U.S. and Canada, including the use of cage-free eggs in all restaurant and room service menu items, as well as sourcing beef from Meyer Farm, which is known for raising their cattle humanely and naturally.
Changes to menus will be implemented at all restaurants managed by Hyatt in the U.S. and Canada as well as on menus for room service, catering, bars, lounges and pools.
Menu changes will include the following:
Children’s Menus – changes starting now and to be fully implemented by the end of November 2012
- Offer a fruit or vegetable as the default side item with all children’s meals;
- Make 8 oz. servings of nonfat or low-fat milk available with free refills. Promote milk or water prominently on the menu with other beverage options displayed less prominently;
- Offer at least one children’s menu meal option that meets the MyPlate federal guidance: one to two servings of fruit and vegetables, a whole grain serving, a lean protein serving, and a low fat dairy (or dairy substitute) serving, which together have a nutrient composition equal to or less than 600 calories, 30 percent of total calories from fat, 10 percent total calories from saturated fat, 600 mg of sodium, and no more than 10 grams added sugar. Position and feature that meal as the first on the children’s menus;
- Ensure any food illustrations on children’s menus depict nutritious options, including milk or water as the beverage of choice if beverages are depicted.
- By 2016, reduce the calorie footprint by at least 10 percent across all food menus, with an endeavor to have at least 50 percent of U.S. Hyatt properties meeting this standard within three years;
- By 2016, reduce the sodium content of its food by at least 10 percent across all food menus, with an endeavor to have at least 50 percent of U.S. Hyatt properties meeting this standard within three years;
- By 2016, reduce the added sugar content of food by at least 10 percent across all food menus, with an endeavor to have at least 50 percent of U.S. Hyatt properties meeting this standard by within three years;
- At least two healthy menu meal options will be equivalent to or lower in price than less healthy menu meal options. This pricing parity will appear on all menus by 2016, with an endeavor to have at least 50 percent of menus reflecting this change within three years.
Every company that works with PHA is required to agree that PHA will monitor and report on progress toward their commitment. Hyatt has agreed to allow PHA to provide annual progress reports and to facilitate the measuring and monitoring of each established benchmark regarding its commitment.