Mama Gaia Academy | First online hospitality academy with a plant-based focus


  • Mama Gaia Academy - credits Boris HristovMama Gaia Academy - credits Boris Hristov

The unique Mama Gaia Academy recently launched, this academy prepares participants for a job in the hospitality industry for free and in just six weeks. This way, the academy wants to tackle the staff shortage in the hospitality industry. In a short online training course, people with little or no experience are trained for a job in the kitchen or operations. The English-language programme is easily accessible and participants can watch short informative videos on their smartphones at any time of day. In order to accelerate the transition to more plant-based options in the hospitality industry, vegan cuisine is central to all modules. The Academy was set up by the founder of social enterprise Dopper, known for the refillable water bottle that reduces the use of single-use plastic. The course is made possible by among others Gulpener.

2 minutes read

Mama Gaia Academy | Accessible for more equality of opportunity

The Mama Gaia Academy is aimed at people who have no catering experience and are open to being retrained. The modules are designed to be easily accessible so that they are suitable for newcomers and people from abroad who already have a work permit or can easily obtain one. Merijn Everaarts, founder of Dopper, is a mission-driven entrepreneur who used the pandemic to raise the bar even higher: “The idea for the Mama Gaia Academy arose during one of Covid’s lockdowns. Our plant-based restaurant Mama Gaia in the centre of Haarlem opened just before the corona crisis. At the time, we also opened our co-working space Oceans and, thanks to our creative approach, fortunately managed to keep our team on board. In addition to the takeaways we offered, we worked hard to create an online Academy. On the one hand, we offer a free and accessible solution to the rapidly increasing shortage of catering staff. At the same time, we see this as the opportunity to make more people at home in the plant-based kitchen.”

Plant-based revolution in restaurant kitchens

Plant-based cuisine is at the heart of the online Academy because eating plant-based is a simple and effective measure to positively impact climate change. Research shows that if we were to embrace a plant-based diet worldwide, food-related greenhouse gas emissions could be reduced by up to 70% by 2050*. This causal link is also clearly underlined in the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report. Everaarts: “In addition to basic skills such as cutting a carrot and opening a bottle of wine, the time is ripe to devote much more attention to the transition to a plant-based food system in the hospitality sector. We want to show how nice, easy and, above all, tasty it is to opt for plant-based food more often. With our online Academy we create more equality of opportunity and stimulate a serious system change in the hospitality industry by making plant-based food the norm on the menu.”

How the Mama Gaia Academy works

Details about the unique online Mama Gaia Academy:

  • Registration is free of charge via their website:
  • The Academy is aimed primarily at people with little to no experience, who are motivated to be trained for a job in the kitchen or service;
  • The English-language programme prepares participants for a job in the hospitality industry in just six weeks;
  • The programme is easily accessible: participants can watch short informative videos and follow the learnings on their smartphones at any time of the day.

Watch the teaser of the Mama Gaia Academy below:

Website: Mama Gaia Academy

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