The Banyan Tree Group has announced that it will launch a range of organic, plant-based menus at its resorts around the world, starting with Thailand later this year.

The Singapore-based group revealed it has embarked on several collaborations covering different areas of the food chain, such as championing local procurement and sustainably sourced food through a partnership with two-star Michelin Chef James Noble. Together, they have broken ground on ORI9IN – a 350-acre gourmet organic farm in the fertile mountains of Chiang Mai, northern Thailand.

Aside from supplying no fewer than 15 Michelin-starred chefs at some of Bangkok’s most elite restaurants, chef-turned-sustainable farmer Noble said the joint venture will also include an on-site farm-to-table organic restaurant slated to open in October this year.

Banyan Tree currently has three hotels in Thailand – in Bangkok, Koh Samui and Phuket, with a fourth, Banyan Tree Krabi, due to open in October. The group has also formed a partnership with Grassroots Pantry, a pioneering brand in Hong Kong, which is at the forefront of plant-based cuisine in Asia’s fine dining scene.

A capsule menu focusing on plant-based, immunity-boosting foods and sustainable kitchen practices is set to launch later this year, and the menu will debut at Banyan Tree’s Phuket venues, followed by a roll-out across all its properties.

“In the ‘new normal’ world of hospitality, guests at luxury hotels will expect healthier options for dining,” comments Rainer Roersch, Banyan tree Samui’s Head Chef. “Our partnership at ORI9IN ensures we are sourcing the best, freshest and most nutritious produce available, and our new plant-based recipes will include some of the finest Asian recipes. Guests can look forward to dishes prepared with ORI9IN’s organic fare – everything from coriander, dill and basil to aubergines, kale, chillies, pumpkin and lemongrass.”

Roersch, who oversees Saffron at Koh Samui, says he envisages that Banyan Tree outlets can focus on import substitution and reducing carbon footprint without sacrificing flavour.

In 2019, Banyan Tree Group implemented a Code of Conduct for suppliers to map supply chain transparency in ingredients sourcing and promote socio-environmental practices to develop a sustainable supply chain. To date, over 900 suppliers have registered.

For 2020, in line with marine conservation goals, the group implemented a 25% benchmark of sustainable seafood sourcing by 2025 from sustainable fisheries. Banyan Tree Global Foundation says its experts will review seafood species served at each location and support identification of sustainably certified alternatives and opportunities for its properties.