The United States Healthful Food Council (USHFC) announced that four Guckenheimer cafés are the first contract foodservice operations in the nation to achieve REAL Certification. The announcement, which concludes a six-month pilot program, was revealed at the first annual Menus of Change leadership summit, co-presented by The Culinary Institute of America and Harvard School of Public Health in Boston.
Responsible Epicurean and Agricultural Leadership (REAL) Certification, a program of the USHFC,
first began as an assurance of nutrition and sustainability best-practices in restaurants, starting with
certified locations in Washington D.C., where the nonprofit is headquartered. These new REAL Certified locations mark the expansion of the program nationally, as well as with foodservice vendors running café operations within corporations, universities, hotels, senior living facilities, event centers, and more.
The four inaugural contract foodservice facilities to become REAL Certified are:
Blue Glass Café*, John Hancock Building Boston, (*open to the public)
Café Hive, Clorox Headquarters Pleasanton, California
W6 Café, Google San Francisco San Francisco
Union Pacific Café*, Union Pacific Omaha, Nebraska (*open to the public)
“These companies should be lauded for taking a pioneering position as champions of nutrition and
sustainability in the workplace,” says Lawrence Williams, president of the USHFC. “With
America’s increasing reliance on food prepared by others, the foodservice industry has
unprecedented influence over dietary choices which, in turn, has profound impact on our nation’s
health. Expanding REAL Certification into contract foodservice not only widens the scope of our
message, but shows that nutrition and sustainability is not only good for consumers, but good for
The pilot program began in December 2012 as Guckenheimer collaborated with accounts to
undergo USHFC review. Utilizing a flexible points-based model similar to the LEED green building
standard, USHFC’s registered dietitians audited and assessed the cafés across a range of criteria
determined by USHFC’s Panel of Experts, such as the utilization of vegetables, fruits, whole grains,
healthful cooking and preparation methods, moderate portion sizes, behavioral components that
encourage ‘better for you choices,’ and sustainable practices for food sourcing.
“We thank USHFC’s bold efforts and the dedicated individuals at each account who have worked to
make this certification a reality,” says Randall Boyd, Guckenheimer CEO. “The shift to nutritioncentric
food at work has tremendous impact for businesses that we are just beginning to quantify.
We are at the tipping point where data will verify that employee health and productivity are
inextricably linked, and food preparation, as well as its presentation, is a large component of that
cycle. Guckenheimer’s core offering aligns with USHFC’s objectives and the foodservice industry
should be ready to rise to the occasion.”
In addition to contract foodservice establishments, the USHFC certifies and promotes REAL
Certified restaurants as part of its Eat REAL initiative.