Sodexo Canada has created the new, 100% plant-based eatery in collaboration with HSI/Canada’s Forward Food program, as part of Sodexo’s plant-based pledge

Montreal, QC, Nov 1, 2022 — On this World Vegan Day, Sodexo Canada and Humane Society International/Canada are excited to announce another milestone in their national collaboration: the launch of Verde, a 100% plant-based dining concept. The first-ever Verde location has just opened at Confederation College in Thunder Bay, Ontario, and is being operated by Sodexo Canada. 

Martin Lapointe, Senior Vice President of Operations for Sodexo Campus said

“Our new Verde offer is a game changer in the food service industry where Sodexo Canada continues to commit itself to the well-being of its students and the planet through an innovative plant-based, plant-forward concept.”

We’re very excited for the opportunity to grow our relationship with HSI by opening the first Verde location in Canada,” said Kyle Mason, Senior Manager of Culinary Development for Sodexo. “The increased demand for plant-based food has been dramatic over the past few years and HSI has supported us through this exciting transition. The training sessions have not only provided our chefs with the skills to add more plant-based items to their menus, but they’ve also become a networking opportunity where our chefs can connect and collaborate on ways to further increase the number of plant-based items on their menu.

The introduction of Verde is part of Sodexo’s nationwide commitment to transition 20% of its protein purchases across Canada to plant-based by Dec. 31, 2024—a pledge made in conjunction with HSI/Canada’s Forward Food program last year. Forward Food works with leaders in the food service industry to make plant-based options more widely available, meeting consumer demand for more ethical, sustainable, and nutritious food choices. 

Riana Topan, Senior Campaign Manager for HSI/Canada’s Forward Food program said

“We are overjoyed to see Verde come to life, making it easier for students and staff at Confederation College to enjoy plant-based meals. Working with Sodexo’s leadership on this initiative has been a dream and we are so proud of their progress to date in making more compassionate and environmentally friendly meals a bigger part of their menus.” 

Sodexo and HSI/Canada began collaborating in 2018, and since that time they have co-hosted a series of plant-based training sessions for the food service management company’s culinary staff. A star participant in those trainings was Chef Leanne English, Sodexo Canada’s National Director of Culinary Experience for Campus and the creative culinary mind behind Verde.

The concept’s initial offerings include dishes such as an avocado sushi bowl, black bean and sweet potato burrito, plant-based meatball sub and cheesy tofu scrambled toast. Chef English’s launch menu makes use of a wide variety of ingredients, from staples like chickpeas and quinoa to dairy-free cheeses and a dark chocolate spread made from scratch.

Sodexo plans to open other Verde locations in the future, continuing to elevate the company’s plant-based menu options at their Higher Education, Corporate Services and Energy and Resource accounts. Sodexo Canada and HSI/Canada will also co-host their ninth culinary training session this month, and Sodexo’s Sustainability Manager, Davide Del Brocco will participate in a webinar hosted by HSI/Canada at the end of November.

The collaboration between Sodexo and Humane Society International spans the globe, including in Singapore, Europe, the United Kingdom, and the United States. HSI praises Sodexo's Corporate Social Responsibility strategies that help people eat healthier, lighten their footprint on the environment and deliver improved animal welfare standards across the food service industry.

Media Contacts

Stephanie Aubin, Director of Communications, Sodexo Canada
Riana Topan, Senior Campaign Manager, HSI/Canada

About Sodexo Canada

Sodexo delivers a wide range of customized solutions, designed to optimize work and living environments. Sodexo has been providing food and facilities management services in Canada for over 40 years, with a focus on enhancing safety, work process and well-being. Sodexo is a market leader in Canada. Sodexo has been recognized as a top employer for the past seven consecutive years. Sodexo is proud to have created the Sodexo Stop Hunger Foundation, an independent charitable organization that has raised over $3 million to fight hunger and donated more than one million meals to at-risk youth across Canada since 2007. Sodexo is included in the CAC Next 20, CAC 40 ESG, FTSE 4 Good and DJSI indices.

Key Figures

  • 10 000 employees
  • Recipient of Canada's Greenest Employer Awards 2021
  • Recipient of Canada's Diversity & Inclusion Employer Awards 2021
  • 1 million consumers served daily

About Humane Society International/Canada

Humane Society International/Canada is a leading force for animal protection, with active programs in companion animals, wildlife and habitat protection, marine mammal preservation, farm animal welfare and animals in research. HSI/Canada is proud to be a part of Humane Society International which, together with its affiliates, constitutes one of the world’s largest animal protection organizations. Celebrating animals and confronting cruelty worldwide and on the web.

HSI/Canada’s Forward Food program is partially supported by Friends of HSI, a registered charitable organization working to protect animals through public education and awareness, rescue, sheltering, provision of veterinary services and other direct care programs. HSI/Canada’s Forward Food program helps institutions and businesses across Canada increase their offerings of delicious and nutritious plant-based options that are better for the animals, the environment and human health. HSI/Canada’s Forward Food program provides culinary trainings, recipes and menu development support, educational sessions and help with marketing and communications.

Back to the list