Elemeno Partners with Nido de Montessori to Launch First Plant-Based Kids Food Program in Canada
The first-of-its-kind food program will consist of healthy lunches, interactive demonstrations, and nutritional summaries for families.
August 18, 2021
VANCOUVER, BC —
Elemeno, Vancouver’s provider of plant-based kids lunches, is excited to partner with Nido de Montessori in Richmond, BC to launch the first plant-based kids lunch program in Canada. The menu, designed in consultation with a registered dietician, is made from scratch using plant-based ingredients. Each month, families receive a nutritional summary, while the children are guided through an interactive demonstration aimed at building relationships, igniting curiosity, and inviting exploration.
“We’re so pleased to partner with Nido de Montessori to provide their children with a best-in-class food program,” said Ryan McKee, founder of elemeno. “People are becoming increasingly savvy about nutrition - reading labels, shopping locally, and embracing ‘clean eating’. By using a strictly plant-based menu, we can maximize their child’s nutrient intake in the midday meal.”
Tarah Feldman-Lloyd, Principal at Nido de Montessori, is thrilled to bring this program to her community:
“We desired a food program that would not only provide nutritious and delicious food for our young ones, but that aligned with our values and mission: one that would nourish our bodies and our minds. Bringing children together around a healthy, wholesome meal each day supports
the relational framework that we nurture. And we love that elemeno is bringing monthly interactive demonstrations to their service, fostering community, inquiry, and independence: pillars of the Nido philosophy.”
Chef Ivan Chung brings a diverse culinary background, including roles at Nemesis Coffee, Bishop’s, Le Marche St George, and Michelin star Pied a Terre in London, England. His menu balances creativity with familiarity, and with names like Macadoodles, Zelda Bombs and Berried Treasure - where kids literally find a treat hidden under a pile of fresh berries – he uses fun and discovery to win over kids and their oft-fickle palates.
“We’re excited to show kids just how delicious and versatile plants can be,” said Chung.
One of the unique aspects of this program is what McKee calls ‘food inclusivity.’
“Food allergies are on the rise among children and the stats don’t fully account for those with mild sensitivities. Too often, children with these intolerances are relegated to a few items at the end of a menu - or worse, a stripped down version of the ‘regular’ item, resulting in a dish that lacks flavour, texture, and consideration. When we built elemeno, we asked ourselves: ‘what if we just made food without the common allergens so that everyone can enjoy the food together?’
Added Feldman-Lloyd: “At Nido, we adhere to the philosophy of ‘come as you are,’ and elemeno’s focus on food inclusivity supports us in forwarding this mission.”
Nido recently announced a second location, on Adanac Street in Vancouver, that is set to open in Fall 2022. Families who are interested in either of their locations are invited to an open house event on September 1, 2021. In addition to meeting Nido staff, families can get pictures taken by photographer Annie Chen and elemeno will be on-site with treats for all. To RSVP, visit https://nidodemontessori.com/eforms/open-house-tour/22/.