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HFHC July-September 2011 Newsletter

Oregon Healthy Food in Health Care
July-September 2011 Newsletter

HFHC Updates 

Registration for the Oregon Hospital Green Chef Challenge is now open!

Hospital food service professionals, clinicians and executives, community healthcare advocates, and public officials from across Oregon and SW Washington are invited to attend the Oregon Hospital Green Chef Challenge. This one day sustainable food education and promotion event highlights the efforts hospitals make to improve the health and sustainability of their food service.

What: Oregon Hospital Green Chef Challenge
When: September 20th, 2011, 11:00AM-4:00PM
Where:Oregon Health & Science University - Old Library Auditorium and Fountain Courtyard 
Cost: Registration $25, Parking $10

  •  Watch an exciting local, sustainable and nutritious cooking challenge
  •  Learn how to develop and manage a successful hospital farmers’ market
  •  Celebrate hospitals contribution to the local agriculture economy
  •  Hear speakers from the sustainable food and farming community
  •  Discover more about what hospitals in the area are doing to improve the health and sustainability of their food service
  •  Network with hospital food service professionals, healthcare executives, producers, distributors, and public officials

A number of hospitals from throughout the state will be participating in the event including involvement in the Challenge; a summer Local, Sustainable Procurement Tracking project; and a Sustainable, Healthy Hospital Poster Session. By attending the event, you will have the opportunity to learn from, support, and applaud the following hospitals:

  • Adventist Medical Center
  • Good Shepherd Hospital
  • Kaiser Permanente
  • Legacy Emanuel
  • Legacy Good Samaritan Hospital
  • Oregon Health & Science University
  • Providence Portland Medical Center
  •  Shriner's Hospital for Children
  • Silverton Hospital
  • St. Charles Medical Center

Oregon Hospital Green Chef Challenge Agenda:

11:00AM – 11:30AM– Registration
11:30AM – 12:15PM – Welcome & Educational Presentation
12:15PM-1:00PM– Farmers’ Market Lunch & tours
1:15PM – 2:45M – Hospital Green Chef Challenge
2:50PM – 4:00PM – Reception: Speakers, Winner Announcement & Poster Session

Space is limited and prepayment is required! Registration is required for all attendees and participants and covers the cost of food and materials.

Register for the event today!

To learn more visit:

Feel free to contact Gretchen Miller, Oregon 503.475.6256, with questions.


Providence Health & Services and the Oregon Healthy Food in Health Care Project Serve-Up Policy and Procurement talk at the Multnomah Food Summit

On June 3rdMultnomah County held the 2ndFood Summit at the Portland University Hotel and Conference Center. The Summit focused on implementing actions of the Multnomah Food Action Plan, Grow and Thrive by 2025, developed by the Multnomah Food Initiative. The Initiative started as an innovative community partnership to develop a shared food system vision, goals, and an action plan that will promote issues of health, social justice, economic vitality, and sustainability within our regional food system.

Emma Sirois, Health Care Without Harm Program Director, co-presented information on developing and implementing sustainable food policies in the Moving Towards Healthy, Sustainable  Food Policies &  Practices in Your Organization breakout session. Attendees learned about efforts in the community around nutrition and sustainability policies and guidelines, identified  challenges and barriers to establishing policies, and have the opportunity to attend a multi-agency workgroup working on food policy development.

Jim Bradley, Regional Director at Providence Health & Services, and Gretchen Miller, Oregon Healthy Food in Health Care Project Coordinator, were both part of the Leveraging or Collective Institutional Purchasing Powerpanel discussion. They provided information on the unique purchasing pathways of hospitals, barriers and opportunities to local, sustainable food procurement, and presented tools that can assist institutions in working collaboratively to track and articulate demand of sustainably produced products. The organizers of the panel hope to create a county-wide institutional purchasing workgroup to identify ways a cross-sector alliance could improve access to and use of healthy, local, sustainable products in their food services.

If you would like more details on the information presented at either of this sessions or are interested in learning more about the associated workgroups, please contact Emma Sirois, 503.780.9859 or Gretchen Miller, 503.475.6256.

Community Partner Highlight

Kristie Middleton is Manager of Corporate Policy and Supply Chain Strategy for The Humane Society of the United States. She presented on cage-free egg issues and hospital procurement at the June 17thOregon Healthy Food in Health Care Workgroup meeting. Contact her at


Cracking cruelty: The cage-free egg movement

Food sustainability seems to be on everyone’s mind these days. Best-sellers like Michael Pollan’s In Defense of Food and documentaries like Food Inc.(and others like them) have sparked a revolution that’s affecting the food world.

How farm animals are treated has become a central part of this movement, and the cage confinement of egg-laying hens is front-and-center. More than 90 percent of U.S. egg-laying hens are confined in barren wire battery cages so small the birds can't even spread their wings. Each hen has less space than a sheet of paper on which to spend her life and can't engage in important natural behaviors like perching or nesting.  The science is clear that these animals endure lives filled with suffering.

Battery cage factory farms—where hundreds of thousands of animals may be crammed into one shed—also cause environmental degradation and food safety threats. There have been sixteen studies published in the last five years comparing caged and cage-free egg operations, and they all found higher rates of Salmonella in the caged facilities. For these reasons, numerous environmental and food safety organizations are in favor of switching to cage-free systems. Hospitals across the country are taking heed by switching their shell and liquid eggs to cage-free. In Oregon, St. Charles Bend, Legacy Health System, and Shriner's Hospital for Children are some of the hospitals now using cage-free eggs.

The Humane Society of the United States has assisted these facilities, as well as companies like Burger King, Kraft Foods and more, in switching to cage-free eggs. The HSUS provides these services for free because we believe in helping find practical solutions that work for everyone. We’re happy to work with your facility on making the switch to higher welfare products that are good for the world around us, including the animals who inhabit it.

Northwest VEG and Adventist Medical Center Sponsor Professional Conference: Enhancing Health With Plant-Based Nutrition

Date:September 16, 2011
Time: 8:30AM-5:00PM
Location: Adventist Medical Center, 10123 SE market Street, Portland, Oregon

This is a golden opportunity for you to find out the latest information on plant-based diets with respect to clinical nutrition and the effects of diet on chronic disease prevention and control. Interest in plant-based diets is growing, and Portland, Oregon has become a center for that developing interest. This is a professional conference offereing continuing education credits for many medical professional, but others with strong interest are welcome to attend. Keynote speaker will be Dr. Neal Barnard of PCRM. Cost is $95 ($125 after September 1, 2011), $65 for health care students. A $10 discount is available for facilities associated with Oregon PSR's Healthy Food in Health Care Project. To get the discount select Oregon Phsicans for Social Responsibility from the membership/affiliation dropdown menu. Lunch is provided. Sponsored by Nortwest VEG and Adventist Medical Center with support from Oregon PSR. Registration now open at:


Tools and Resources

  •  Food Alliance “Find Good Food Search Tool – A new online search tool that can help you find businesses or organizations that are committed to supporting sustainability in food and agriculture. Your hospital, organization or businesses can be listed in the Find Good Food search tool by joining the Food Alliance Network.
  •  Environmental Working Group has two new online resources. Decoding Meat and Dairy Product Labels – helps consumers better understand the myriad meat and dairy labels currently found on the market – and Meat Eater’s Guide to Climate Change and Health provides information on and ranks the health and environmental impact of different food categories.



House moves to bar genetically modified salmon. The House voted Wednesday to prohibit the Food and Drug Administration from approving genetically modified salmon for human consumption.

From the fields to inner city, pesticides affect children.New York City's low-income neighborhoods and California's Salinas Valley could hardly be more different. But scientists have discovered that children growing up in these communities share a pre-natal exposure to pesticides that appears to be affecting their ability to learn and succeed in school.

Groups sue FDA to stop addition of antibiotics in livestock feed. Several environmental and public health groups filed suit against the Food and Drug Administration on Wednesday to try to force the government to stop farmers from routinely adding antibiotics to livestock feed, saying the practice is compounding a public health crisis.

Pfizer suspends sales of chicken drug with arsenic. Farmers have for decades fed chickens an arsenic-containing drug that promotes growth, but after a government study found trace amounts of this poisonous carcinogen in chickens, its maker will suspend its sales.

Food for thought: US squanders energy throughout food chain.From the diesel fuel tractors that harvest our crops, to the refrigerated trucks that transport products cross-country, to the labor-saving technology found in the home such as toasters and self-cleaning ovens, the U.S. food system is about as energy inefficient as it gets. And it’s only getting worse.

Cans bring BPA to dinner, FDA confirms.Federal chemists have confirmed what everyone had expected: that if a bisphenol-A-based resin is used to line most food cans, there’s a high likelihood the contents of those cans will contain at least traces of BPA.


Upcoming Events

9th - Friends of Family Farmers
InFARMation – 5:30PM-8:30PM (Portland, Oregon – Holocene, 1001 SE Morrison)
Northwest Discovery Tour (Portland, Oregon)
Oregon Healthy Food in Health CareWorkgroup Meeting – 10:00AM-11:30AM (Portland, Oregon – Portland Providence Medical Center)

13th – Friends of Family Farmers InFARMation – 5:30-8:30PM (Portland, Oregon – Holocene, 1001 SE Morrison)
16thEnhancing Health through Plant-Based Nutrition – (Portland, Oregon – Adventist Medical Center, 10123 SE Market)
20thOregon Hospital Green Chef Challenge – 11:00AM-4:00PM (Portland, Oregon – Oregon Health & Science University, 3181 SW Sam Jackson Park Rd.) 

11th - Friends of Family Farmers InFARMation – 5:30PM-8:30PM (Portland, Oregon – Holocene, 1001 SE Morrison)
14th -
Oregon Healthy Food in Health CareWorkgroup Meeting – 10:00AM-11:30AM (Portland, Oregon – Portland Providence Medical Center)
18th-19th FoodMed - (Seattle, WA – Hyatt Olive 8 Hotel,
1635 8th Avenue)