Quorn & Sodexo partner to create first carbon-neutral concept for foodservice

Top meat-free brand, Quorn has joined forces with catering solutions giant, Sodexo, to begin the global roll out of Carbono Cero, the world’s first carbon neutral solution for foodservice. This could save at least 7,296 tonnes of carbon each year.

This month sees the initial roll out of the Carbono Cero dishes at a number of Sodexo’s corporate client sites in the UK, with a plan to expand this globally to 1,500 sites by April 2023.

With over one-third of all man-made greenhouse gas emissions coming from the food system (IPCC), the Carbono Cero solution features recipes inspired by chefs at Quorn Professionals and Sodexo to help tackle the global climate crisis.

Carbono Cero is a range of ten carbon-neutral recipes which are created using three key elements:
- Quorn – accredited low carbon protein
- Seasonality / locality – low carbon ingredients
- Each recipe has been developed to reduce as much of its carbon footprint as possible before being offset to be carbon-neutral

Powered by four innovative Quorn ingredients (Buttermilk Style Burger, No Beef Pieces, Fillets and Wings), each recipe’s carbon is calculated using a globally accredited tool, Klimato. The remaining carbon is then offset using gold standard projects such as afforestation programmes.

Recipes include: Ancho Chilli Miso Mole (pictured), Asian Inspired Potato Chaat & Saag Dahl, Dirty Wing Burrito Bowl, Japanese Crispy Katsu, Louisiana Style Buttermilk Burger, Napoli Style Lasagne, Double Dip Korean Wings, Middle Eastern Style Shawarma, and Indonesian Satay Wing Goreng.

Paul Jennings, Head of Food Development for Foodservice at Quorn Foods, remarked, “Quorn is a company born out of sustainable values; it underpins everything we do. We want to be part of the solution that the planet needs so it was a pleasure to develop Carbono Cero with Sodexo.

'We share many of the same values and each have Net Positive strategies to ensure we’re having a positive impact on the planet.”

John Wright, Global Head of Food at Sodexo, explained, “Our guests want more and more plant-based dishes that taste great and help to reduce the impact on the environment.

'It’s an exciting opportunity to leverage the collaboration with Quorn and for our chefs to bring carbon neutral dishes that are authentic and tasty for our guests to enjoy, that are also good for the planet.”

As part of the global roll out, Quorn’s development chefs Paul Jennings and Mark Wetherill are providing culinary development sessions with Sodexo’s regional food platform teams. The sessions will focus on seasonality and sustainable cooking methods with toolkits and carbon saving reports for each site.

The training will help Sodexo’s teams engage guests, encouraging them to discover new ways of eating and bring to life the journey of what the solution is trying to achieve.

Paul added, “Aspirational meat reducers make up 55% of the meat free market and as environmental awareness skyrocketed in the pandemic and consumers of all ages recognised the impact of their meal choices, eating less meat is now a behaviour not a trend. We’re working hard with our partners, like Sodexo, to create delicious dishes that meet the needs of consumers.”

Quorn’s mycoprotein is naturally high in protein and fibre and low in saturated fat. It produces 90% less carbon emissions and uses 90% less land and water than beef production.

Quorn’s ambition is to become a Net Positive business by 2030 and achieve net zero emissions within its own operations by 2030. The company also aims to achieve net zero emissions across it’s whole supply chain by 2040.

Sodexo’s global target – validated by SBTi – to reduce carbon emissions by 34% by 2025 (against a 2017 baseline) forms part of Sodexo’s Better Tomorrow commitment.

Having already exceeded this, the UK and Ireland business – which employs in excess of 30,000 people – has set its sights on becoming Carbon Neutral in its direct operations by 2025.

By 2030, it aims to reduce carbon emissions across all three scopes by 50% and its long-term ambition is the decarbonisation of its business across all three scopes by 2045. Its net zero plan to achieve this includes increasing the number of plant-based meals and recipes to 33% by 2025.