Hautels : Award Winning Halekulani Hotels Serves GMO-Free Cuisine

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Hybrid cars, CFLs, solar photovoltaic panels…Americans are making more efforts to be sustainable.

And now diners want healthier—read: eco-friendlier—options, too.

Which is why the Halekulani, an award-winning luxury property right on Honolulu’s famed Waikiki beach, started offering organic gourmet menu items free of genetically modified organisms (GMO). It’s the first U.S. luxury hotel to offer GMO-free cuisine.

The hotel introduced the modified menus in March “in response to its clientele’s growing desire to be provided this option in an era of increasing focus and awareness on product choices and wellness,” said Peter Shaindlin, the hotel’s chief operating officer. This option will be available at the hotel’s acclaimed ocean-side open-air restaurant, Orchids, as well as through its in-room dining service, with items conceptualized by executive chef Vikram Garg.

To ensure food items contain a minimal amount of chemicals and pollutants, Halekulani sources produce from local organic farms. All dairy, fish, meat, fruits and vegetables available are free of chemicals, preservatives, hormones food additives, enzyme flavorings and processing agents, including rennet used to make hard cheeses, meat, eggs, and dairy products from GMO-fed animals, not to mention fish are wild-caught. The hotel will even offer organically produced wines and USDA-organic juices.

According to a recently released survey of Hawaii restaurants by Zagat, 74 percent of diners felt it’s important that their food be locally sourced, organic or sustainably raised, and 62 percent added they would be willing to pay more for it.

“I have been a long time proponent of health conscious cuisine—’honest foods’—foods that are locally sourced, simple, pure and unprocessed—speak to the way so many of our discriminating guests live and eat,” Garg said. “That’s what we want to offer through our expanded menu items.”

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