Upfield Foods, acclaimed to be the largest plant-based consumer products company in the world, has unveiled a new initiative and global advocacy platform to encourage people to eat healthy, plant-based diets towards attaining sustainable and healthy food systems.
Launched on June 5 2020 World Environment Day, the A Better Plant-Based Future initiative is in line with Upfield’s purpose to make people healthier and happier with great-tasting, plant-based nutrition products that are good for people and better for the planet, said the company.
“To responsibly feed a global population of 10 billion by 2050, a shift towards plant-based foods is needed, to protect biodiversity, limit global warming, and promote human health,” Upfield Chief Corporate Affairs and Communications Officer, Dr. Jeanette Fielding said at the launch of the campaign.
“For this shift to happen, plant-based eating must become accessible and familiar to people. This is why we are challenging as many people as possible to go plant-based for a day – as a start. If healthy, sustainable diets are accessible to all, we have a much greater chance of achieving the groundswell needed to lead a sustainable food system,” Fielding added.
To launch the new platform, four mini-documentaries showcase community leaders pioneering plant-based eating and plant-based living, emphasizing the idea that plant-based diets can be accessible to everyone. “The current pandemic has inspired creative home cooking and innovation from small businesses,” the company said in a statement. “These are exactly the actions needed to help us all choose plant-based diets that are healthier and have a lower environmental impact while enjoying the foods we have grown up with and love.”
The initiative and the one-day challenge will promote improved public health and environmental sustainability, according to Bamidele Moses Amao, Upfield’s Managing Director West Africa. “If everyone continues consuming dairy and meat at the current level, the resulting impact on the climate, land use, and water use, paired with the negative effects on human health, may result in environmental degradation and proliferation of non-communicable diseases like hypertension, diabetes and certain cancers. This is why our initiative “A Better Plant-Based Future” challenges us all to go plant-based for one day,” he said.
“Going plant-based for one day shows us that plant-based diets are not a complete reversal of our traditional diets,” Amao continued. “They can be accessible, affordable, and familiar. Through simple plant-based swaps for meat and dairy products, we are all able to make the long term shift required for our planet and our health, without giving up on taste or performance.”
Company Head for Corporate Affairs and Communication Africa, Motola Oyebanjo spoke more on the #ABetterPlantBasedFuture social media challenge. “Participants will showcase their plant-based diet for the day and challenge their family members and friends to also take up the challenge,” Oyebanjo said. “We are using this fun and engaging approach to communicate the essence of this initiative while we educate the people on the best ways to achieve a sustainable and healthy plant-based diet.”
Participants can visit the initiative website as well as Upfield’s social media pages to learn more, join the campaign and challenge their family and friends to share a photo of their plant-based meals on social media with the hashtag #ABetterPlantBasedFuture.
Upfield Foods is headquartered in Amsterdam and sells its products in over 95 countries with 17 manufacturing sites throughout the world. A foremost producer of plant-based spreads and cheeses globally with more than 100 iconic brands, including Flora, Rama, Country Crock, Proactiv, Becel, and Violife, Upfield entered the African market in 2018 with the acquisition of the iconic Blue Band spreads brand. The brand is currently produced and sold in several African countries including Ghana, Nigeria, and Kenya, with ongoing plans to extend the brand into other healthy and nutritious food products and brands in African markets.