Webinar | Transforming hospital food towards a more sustainable future


Climate change continues to exacerbate global challenges such as food security, infectious and non-communicable diseases, poverty, and the loss of biodiversity. Providing sustainable and healthy food that is accessible and affordable to everyone is part of the social responsibility of the healthcare sector to reduce the impact of a warming climate, to ensure the health of patients and communities, and to inspire leadership by example.

This vision of sustainable and healthy food policies in healthcare, however, is still a challenge to many hospitals; and many institutions do not procure food with environment considerations and social value as part of a holistic approach..

Webinar outline

This webinar highlighted the challenges and opportunities around the co-development of a food hospital vision where the value of food is recognised in its broad sense. Furthermore, this webinar explored the opportunities to work with your organisation, suppliers and key policy stakeholders to get more value from procurement, design your menus, and measure patient expectation. With this interactive webinar we wanted to inspire other hospitals and health centres to start building a food culture that prioritise health and well-being along with sustainability, and to have a constructive debate.


Speakers and presentations 

Dr Susannah McWilliam, Programme Manager – Food for Life Hospital Leaders (Soil Association) UK

 Presentation: Co-designing a vision for a good food hospital

Dr Susannah McWilliam’s work supports NHS Trusts to transform their approaches to food for the benefit of patients, staff, and visitors and to ensuring a health-promoting approach to food in hospitals. Using a multi-disciplinary approach, Susannah supports the development and delivery of meaningful and effective food and drink strategies. Susannah is also an expert in ward-level food waste and is currently running food waste pilots in NHS Trusts. Previously she ran Big Lottery funded hospital pilots working intensively with three NHS Trusts over an 18-month period. Susannah has a PhD in sustainable hospital foodservice systems, was a member of the Hospital Food Standards Panel’s expert reference groups, and regularly presents at national and regional conferences.

Hayley Lapalme, Program Designer/Facilitator - NOURISH, Canada

 Presentations: Transforming hospital food toward a more sustainable future

NOURISH is a national leadership program for Canadian healthcare innovators working to build a culture and practice of ‘food for health.’ As Facilitator, Hayley supports the national cohort of practitioners to conduct experiments and collaborative projects, at both organisational and systems levels, to advance understanding about the impact of food in healthcare on patients, staff, and communities. Hayley has worked with public institutions and municipalities to create more resilient food systems for nearly a decade. She has authored papers and given numerous conference presentations on the power of public procurement. She holds a Masters of Adult Education and Community Development from the University of Toronto where her research was on Systemic Design for Learning, with a focus on the role of food systems communities of practice to build the social economy.  

Dan MUNSHAW, Co-lead - Values-Based Procurement project, NOURISH

Dan Munshaw is the Manager of Supply Management for the City of Thunder Bay. A seasoned supply professional with 35 years of experience in government, mining, and manufacturing - Dan is a strong proponent of strategic application of public spend advancing and social, sustainable, and economic causes. In 2017, he was recognised by Ontario’s Greenbelt Fund as a Provincial Food Champion. He is a national Nourish cohort advancing healthy and local foods within healthcare and Thunder Bay & Area Food Strategy Executive member advancing local food & economic development. Dan also participates on the Northern Food Distribution Network trying to bring affordable and healthy foods to remote northern Ontario communities.  

Annie Marquez, Co-lead – Sustainable Menus project, NOURISH

A registered Dietician and Manager of Menu Management and Nutritional Information System at the Centre-Sud-de-l’ile-de-Montréal (CIUSSS) in Quebec. She graduated in 2008 and has worked as a dietician while studying Sustainable Development in Nutrition. Her studies have taught her the importance of making food choices that have a reduced environmental impact and that are beneficial for her health and the health of others. She has been manager for ten years now and has tried to introduce new products and ways of reducing waste and energy consumption, whilst maintaining meal quality and client satisfaction.

Stephanie Cook, Co-lead - Measuring Patient Food Experience project, NOURISH

A registered Dietician with a Master’s of Science from the University of Alberta Stephanie is the Director of Nutrition Services for the Saskatchewan Health Authority. She is passionate about food and nutrition and has spent close to three decades leading initiatives aimed at improving nutritional well-being, such as programs for overweight children, developing healthy food policies, and combating malnutrition in hospitalised patients. Stephanie, like many living in the Prairies, has ties to the farming community and is committed to shortening the distance food travels and redefining the value of local food.