Allina Health announced today (12/01/2015) that it will no longer offer sugar sweetened beverages and deep-fried foods in its hospital cafeterias, vending machines, cafes and other food-service areas effective January 1, 2016. Allina Health operates 13 hospitals and over 90 clinics in Minnesota and Western Wisconsin including Abbott Northwestern, Mercy, United and Unity hospitals in the Twin Cities metro area. Link

Essentia Health Voluntarily Phases Out Sugary Beverages in Statewide Wellness Model (7/1/2013)

Beginning July 1, Essentia Health will remove sugar-sweetened beverages from its downtown Duluth and Superior campuses, joining other health systems nationwide in creating models of health promotion. Essentia’s sugary beverage phase-out is a call to action for all Minnesota hospitals and employers” stated Jamie Harvie, Institute for a Sustainable Future Executive Director and Commons Health Hospital Challenge coordinator. “Essentia’s sugary beverage phase-out is landmark as it sets the statewide stage for “healthcare outside hospital walls” - comprehensive workplace and community healthy beverage policies.” See press release

Essentia Commits to 20% Local Food Purchasing (3/8/2013)


“Supporting local food production fits with our mission of making a healthy difference in people’s lives,” said John Vidmar, Essentia Health’s director of nutrition services, in announcing its pledge to buy local. “We’re not alone in believing local food is healthy food. The concept has also received support from the American Medical Association, the Minnesota Academy of Family Physicians and the American Nursing Association.” For article in the Duluth News Tribune

Grand Itasaca Hospital and Clinices Phases out Sugary Beverages (3/1/13)

“The evidence that sugar-sweetened beverages are hazardous to our health is overwhelming, and it shows that they contribute not only to obesity and diabetes, but to an increased risk for heart disease as well," says Dr. Lisa Owens, general surgeon at Grand Itasca. “While we acknowledge that consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages is only one of many factors contributing to obesity, reducing consumption is a fairly easy way to begin reversing the trend. As a health care leader in our community, we feel obligated to make the healthy choice the easy choice.”

St. Lukes Phases out Sugary Beverages (9/16/12)
"It became obvious that the sugar products are not helping our patients, they are not helping our population," says St. Luke's President and CEO John Strange.

9-17-12 Hospitals asked to practice what they preach

A coalition of doctors, nurses and other interested parties is calling on Minnesota’s hospitals to eliminate sugary beverages, serve locally produced food and promote breast-feeding. By: John Lundy, Duluth News Tribune