It's a turnkey, third-party evaluation of your foodservice operation, recognizing your commitment to sustainability and nutrition and importantly, your customers' health and well-being.
SPE certification demonstrates that in addition to taste, a restaurant or foodservice operation values health, sustainability and a commitment to the greater good. When choosing where to eat, consumers can be confident that an SPE establishment will offer sustainable, balanced choices.
SPE’s operational certification is a tiered scoring system that awards one, two or three stars to foodservice establishments. The more an establishment is aligned with SPE’s guiding principles, the higher they will score.
Evaluating the operation
Using a scientifically-grounded questionnaire, operational practices are evaluated across three key areas:
- Sourcing and Sustainability
- Nutrition and Menu Balance
- Training and Transparency
Evaluating the plate
To ensure that a diner can find healthy options, SPE also prioritizes the execution of our health through food philosophy on the plate.
SPE-certified establishments are required to offer dishes that meet specific criteria for a balanced plate. Higher scores are achieved by including more dishes on the menu that:
- Use nutrient-dense ingredients
- Use minimal quantities of saturated fat
- Adhere to portion guidelines
- Utilize healthy cooking techniques
- Use antibiotic-free animal proteins
- Minimize high-sodium ingredients
How does SPE certification work in my industry?
Our operational certification has been adapted to apply to any foodservice establishment. Choose a link below to find out how SPE certification works in your industry:
What's in it for you?
As part of the certification process, you have access to our team of culinary nutritionists, chefs, and marketing experts to ensure you get the maximum return on your investment. Each certified operation receives:
- License to feature SPE’s logo on site and on websites and menus
- Practical recommendations on how to further commitments and achieve more stars
- Webcast training on what it means to be SPE-certified for your front-of-house staff and culinary team
- Marketing support, including a customized page on SPE’s website, social media engagement and marketing assets
- Access to SPE’s culinary nutrition newsletter and webinars, featuring recipes, cooking demos, ingredient spotlights and relevant industry news
In addition to the training and marketing support included with certification, SPE also offers a suite of consulting services that leverage our culinary and nutrition expertise. If you aren’t currently eligible for certification, we can help you get there!
To find out more please fill out the contact form on this page or call Andrea Canada at +1,646.553.3808.
Our quality control process
We are committed to maintaining the standards of quality behind our certification and ensuring that they are continually met by certified establishments.
We implement a rigorous quality control process that ensures SPE-certified operations meet the requirements of certification and represent SPE’s principles. Our quality control process includes:
- Onsite visits by quality control specialists
- Purchasing and menu reviews
- Process improvement and corrective action plans, when necessary
Our quality control process is not meant to police partner restaurants and foodservice providers. Rather, it serves as a reminder of how the principles of SPE are put into practice and provide constructive feedback. Through the periodic follow-up of SPE Certified chefs and dietitians, the process provides us additional opportunities to assist partner chefs in successfully applying the principles of SPE.
For more information about our turnkey program, levels of certification and other benefits of SPE's new Operational Certification®, please contact us using the form below:
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VP, Culinary Nutrition & Sustainability