Currently, almost three-quarters of the sodium in the U.S. food supply is estimated to come from processed foods. Often these processes include high levels of sodium and ingredients that have not been sustainability sourced. Lower levels of processing can be used to extend the season of local and sustainably grown produce, create healthy spice mixtures and offer up whole grains in enjoyable snacks. Many minimally processed foods - wine, nut butter, frozen fruits and vegetables, mayonnaise, dark chocolate, 100 percent whole-grain crackers, fresh-cut vegetables, yogurt, reduced sodium canned goods, among other things - can be incorporated into healthy meals.
Foodservice operators have the opportunity to help consumers make better food purchasing choices by incorporating minimally processed foods into their menus and making those choices transparent. This will not only benefit people’s personal health but the health of the planet. Whole and minimally processed foods are typically higher in micronutrient value and less likely to contain high levels of added sugars, saturated or trans fats, and sodium. Fresh foods are also typically slowly metabolized, preventing sharp increases in blood sugar that over time may lead to insulin resistance.
At entegra, we work with suppliers and manufacturers who seek to create a more sustainable future through contracts that include a Supply Chain Code of Conduct and a commitment to animal welfare and sustainable sourcing programs.
To view the Menus of Change principles for a more sustainable world, visit MenusOfChange.org.
Entegra Procurement Services regularly publishes blog posts on food trends and innovations in food services. Entegra is more than a group purchasing organization (GPO): Our team of procurement specialists implement strategic sourcing to bring the most value to your business. We help our clients, in many segments ranging from the healthcare supply chain to restaurant supply, to cut costs and consolidate their portfolios.