Pioneering food service company’s donation on behalf of clients enables national nonprofit to help 4,000 kids form healthy food habits
PALO ALTO, CA – January 14, 2014 – At Bon Appétit Management Company, we believe that making a positive difference in the food system — one that pays dividends long past the holiday season — is the best gift to give.
Every December, we make a sizable annual holiday gift to a nonprofit in honor of our clients at corporations, universities, and museums — among them Google, Johns Hopkins University, and the Art Institute of Chicago — in lieu of hundreds of physical tokens of appreciation. Our 2013 recipient is FoodCorps, a 4-year-old national service organization that places emerging leaders in underserved communities to teach kids about real food and help them grow up healthy. Through its partnership with AmeriCorps, it recruits, trains and places young people into limited-resource schools for a year of service dedicated to transforming the school food environment.
As a result of Bon Appétit Management Company’s gift, FoodCorps is able to fund five service members. Living in the communities of Boston, MA, Oakland, CA, Portland, OR, Santa Fe, NM, and Wake County, NC, these individuals will teach approximately 4,000 kids about healthy eating and a healthy food system, connect them to local farms, and plant gardens with them.
Bon Appétit Management Company CEO Fedele Bauccio first met FoodCorps cofounder Debra Eschmeyer in late 2011, when both were honored with an inaugural James Beard Foundation Leadership Award. A few months ago, Fedele had dinner with dozens of FoodCorps members in our café at Lewis & Clark College in Portland, OR, where they were having their annual week of training.
“I was so deeply impressed by the passion and energy these young people had as they set off to change the food system in America,” said Fedele. “Helping K-12 kids form healthy food habits before they head to university or get a job — which is the soonest Bon Appétit is able to begin to feed them — is absolutely essential. I’m proud to join FoodCorps’ Corporate Council, and I hope other corporations will join us in investing in the health of the next generation.”
In the 2012-2013 school year alone, FoodCorps:
- reached 67,584 children
- recruited 3,289 new community volunteers
- built or revitalized 411 school and community gardens (over 13 football fields worth of gardens)
- donated 29,556 pounds of produce from those gardens
- conducted over 880 cafeteria taste tests with kids
- got 207 healthy recipes added to school cafeteria menus
- made 1,849 farmer/producer connections for their schools
- helped get over 46,000 pounds of local produce served in school meals
FoodCorps is thrilled with Bon Appétit Management Company’s sponsorship, said Debra Eschmeyer, now vice president of external affairs. “What Fedele has made possible in corporate, college, and university cafés across the country is a great inspiration to our service members,” she added. “Now Bon Appétit is helping us provide high-quality food and nutrition education to limited-resource schools nationwide.”
Past recipients of Bon Appétit Management Company holiday gifts include Wholesome Wave, which helps bring healthful, locally grown fruits and vegetables to low-income families; the Farmer-Veteran Coalition (FVC), which helps recent military veterans transition to becoming farmers; and the Agriculture and Land-Based Training Association(ALBA), which provides educational and business opportunities for farmworkers and other would-be farmers to grow and sell their own organic crops.
About Bon Appétit Management Company
Bon Appétit Management Company (www.bamco.com) is an on-site restaurant company offering full food-service management to corporations, universities, and specialty venues. Based in Palo Alto, CA, Bon Appétit has more than 500 cafés in 32 states, including eBay, the University of Pennsylvania, and the Getty Center. All Bon Appétit food is cooked from scratch, including sauces, stocks, and soups. A pioneer in environmentally sound sourcing policies, Bon Appétit has developed programs addressing local purchasing, the overuse of antibiotics, sustainable seafood, the food and climate change connection, humanely raised meat and eggs, and farmworker welfare. It has received numerous awards for its work, from organizations including the International Association of Culinary Professionals, the James Beard Foundation, Natural Resources Defense Council, Seafood Choices Alliance, and The Humane Society of the United States.
FoodCorps is a nationwide team of leaders that connects kids to real food and helps them grow up healthy. FoodCorps places these leaders in limited-resource communities for a year of public service where they conduct hands-on food education, build and tend school gardens, and facilitate getting high-quality local food into public school cafeterias. Funding for FoodCorps is provided by the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, AmeriCorps, and a diverse array of private and public donors.