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The United Fresh Foundation has unveiled a new Let’s Move Salad Bars to California Schools campaign to donate salad bars to 350 Golden State schools at the United Fresh 2013 convention in San Diego. United Fresh members are encouraged to support the charitable commitment that will culminate in a milestone donation.
The Lets Move Salad Bars to California Schools campaign is spearheaded by four California produce industry leaders passionate about increasing children’s consumption of fresh fruits and vegetables with school salad bars: Karen Caplan, president and CEO, Frieda's Inc; Margaret D'Arrigo-Martin, VP of community development, Taylor Farms; Lisa McNeece, VP of Foodservice and Industrial Sales, Grimmway Enterprises, Inc.; and Dick Spezzano, president, Spezzano Consulting.
"All four co-chairs of the Let’s Move Salad Bars to California Schools Task Force are dedicated to making fresh produce more accessible to the children of California, which is why we are volunteering our time to chair this awesome campaign," said Karen Caplan.
Caplan, McNeece, D’Arrigo-Martin, and Spezzano will co-chair United Fresh’s Let’s Move Salad Bars to California Schools Task Force, which includes 25 produce industry leaders from throughout the state of California:
• Jerry Butt, Mixtec Group
• Mark Carroll, Gelson's
• Greg Corrigan, Raley's
• Marty Craner, B & C Fresh Sales
• Jan Delyser, California Avocado Commission
• Natasha DiPretoro, True Organic Products
• Sue Foerster, California Dept. of Public Health
• Phil Henry, Henry Avocado Corporation
• Cindy Jewell, California Giant Berry Farms
• Lorri Koster, Mann Packing Co.
• David Krause, Paramount Citrus
• Wes Liefer, Pura Vida Farms
• Carissa Mace, Fresh Produce and Floral Council
• Angela Nardone, N2N Global
• Sheri Normandin, MCL Fresh, Inc.
• Gina Nucci, Mann Packing Co.
• Marty Ordman, Dole Food Co.
• Gordon Robertson, Sun World International
• Roger Schroeder, Stater Brothers
• Bob Spence, Ready Pac
• Abby Taylor-Silva, Grower-Shipper Association/GSA Foundation
• Al Vangelos, Novelle Consulting
• Josh Waters, Safeway
• Fred Williamson, Andrew & Williamson Fresh Produce
• Mary Wright-Rana, PRO*ACT, LLC
“This is truly a win-win for all involved. Childhood obesity has become a serious problem in the United States and by providing salad bars to schools, students will develop healthy eating habits and influence their parents to purchase more fresh produce at the grocery store,” noted Dick Spezzano.
The United Fresh Foundation set a goal to donate 350 salad bars based on the large number of requests from California schools. The Task Force will raise funds from produce and retail industry colleagues, related businesses and foundations. Over the last two years, more than 180 California schools have already received salad bars through contributions from United Fresh members and other Let’s Move Salad Bars to Schools contributors.
“I’ve seen the success salad bars have had in my local schools. The demand for salad bars is driven by students, parents and educators that recognize a trip to the salad bar is an effective way to help our nation reduce childhood obesity,” said Margaret D’Arrigo-Martin.
Let’s Move Salad Bars to California Schools supports Team California for Healthy Kids, a program started by California State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson to increase access to fresh foods and salad bars. United Fresh is collaborating with the California State Department of Education to achieve these shared goals.
At United Fresh 2013 in San Diego, a May 15 press event will celebrate the salad bar donation to California schools. Sponsors will be recognized at the event and featured prominently in signage and printed materials at the convention, as well as on the United Fresh and Let’s Move Salad Bars to Schools websites. Most importantly, the salad bars highlight the produce industry’s commitment to improving child nutrition and combating childhood obesity and recognize the important health benefits of increasing fruit and vegetable consumption. The donation of salad bars to schools at the United Fresh convention has become a tradition: in 2011, 43 salad bars were donated to New Orleans schools, and last spring at United Fresh 2012, salad bars were donated to 100 Texas schools.
"This is not about today, tomorrow, or the next couple years. This is about impacting the health of current and future generations. Early exposure to fruits and vegetables is the only true way to create healthy lifestyle changes that become the norm, not the exception,” said Lisa McNeece
Let’s Move Salad Bars to California Schools is a program of the United Fresh Foundation, a founding partner of Let’s Move Salad Bars to Schools, a national initiative that has donated more than 1,600 salad bars nationwide, increasing children’s access and consumption of fresh fruits and vegetables in school lunch every day. The program supports First Lady Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move! initiative to end childhood obesity in a generation.
For more information, contact United Fresh policy and grassroots manager Andrew Marshall at: 202-303-3407 or [email protected].