Cleveland, OH restaurant commits to using only non-GMO ingredients

By Ken Roseboro
Published: January 30, 2015
Category: Non-GMO Initiatives

TownHall Restaurant in Cleveland Ohio

TownHall Restaurant in Cleveland, Ohio

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Fast-casual TownHall aims to become Non-GMO Project verified

TownHall restaurant in the Ohio City neighborhood of Cleveland has announced a commitment to using only non-GMO ingredients.

TownHall has been working to source only non-GMO ingredients, including breads, dairy, oils, and meats, since it opened in the summer of 2013.

Going non-GMO is no easy task for TownHall since it sources ingredients from some 100 suppliers. Still, co-owner Bobby George is committed to the initiative, which is called TownHall 2.0.

“We set out to create a GMO-free menu not because it would be an easy feat, but instead because we knew that it was the right thing to do,” George said. “We believe that human beings should not be used as a science experiment.”

In addition to its non-GMO commitment, TownHall focuses on using organic, sustainably grown, and locally sourced foods.

TownHall’s “fast casual” daily dining menu consists of 36 menu items, 10 fresh pressed juices, and six smoothies, plus several desserts and rotating menu items that are all non-GMO.

TownHall’s commitment to serving health food has garnered awards including Best of Cleveland award from Cleveland Magazine and Best New Restaurant by Cleveland Scene magazine.

TownHall plans to have its restaurant Non-GMO Project verified. Because of the strong demand for non-GMO verification, the Project has not yet been able to verify TownHall.

“We are unfortunately not Non-GMO Project verified yet, but we are definitely ready for an inspection when they are caught up and ready to work with us on verification,” said Kayla Barnes, TownHall’s spokesperson.

Only two other restaurants in the US have achieved Non-GMO Project verification: Berkeley-based Nature’s Best and Mighty-O Donut in Seattle, Washington.

TownHall joins a growing trend of restaurants making non-GMO commitments. Others going non-GMO include Chipotle Mexican Grill and California-based Mexican restaurant chain Sharkey’s.

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