Cindy Jewell, Hilary Long Reflect on Impact of Tour de Fresh
- by Jessica Donnel
WATSONVILLE, CA - Tour de Fresh is almost upon us, and before looking forward to the 2018 event, the produce industry is looking back on all the successes they have achieved hand in hand in bringing more access to fresh fruits and vegetables to the next generation. Presented by The California Giant Foundation, this year’s Tour will commence with riders embarking on the four-day excursion to support Salad Bars to Schools in placing at least 50 salad bars in schools around the country.
One of those produce industry members reflecting on this journey is Cindy Jewell, United Fresh Chairwoman and Vice President of Marketing for California Giant Berry Farms. Jewell has been dedicated to helping kids get fresh food for the vast majority of her life, and from these roots, Tour de Fresh has reached its fifth year of providing a vehicle for bringing salad bars to schools.
“One of the reasons I am passionate about this cause is because of the kids in my life and how thankful I am for their good health every day. When my kids were little, I donated to charities that benefitted kids on their behalf all the time,” said Jewell. “Giving back should be personal, and working in the fresh produce industry, we have a unique opportunity to give back to a cause that we all care about dearly—and we each have kids in our lives that we would love to see impacted by this event. Whether it’s our own kids, relatives, or even kids in the neighborhood, if each of us made a donation on behalf of one or more kids we care about it would have a huge impact on this event and the cause.”
Salad bars are an effective school-based strategy to increase students’ fruit and vegetable consumption and empowers them to make a choice to try new things, the United Fresh Start program touts. It’s all about creating more access to fresh fruits and vegetables to schools through salad bars and setting the tone for a healthier future, according to a press release.
“We have absolutely loved being an official sponsor of Tour de Fresh for the past five years. This is an event where some of the top companies in the produce industry come together, in a beautiful part of our country, to ride for a cause that’s so near and dear to all of us,” explained Hilary Long, Marketing Director at Tsamma Juice. “The money raised from each rider provides a salad bar to a school who’s been on a waiting list and will be so grateful. If you stop to think about the long term impact of Tour de Fresh, we’re providing fresh fruits and vegetables to thousands of students for years to come. That is something for us to all be very proud of...and we have a lot of fun doing it!”
Since 2014, Tour de Fresh has collectively raised more than $600,000 to provide 184 salad bars to schools across the U.S. To date, the 2018 Tour de Fresh has raised $93,836 and looks to raise another $82,000 to place nearly 50 salad bars to schools.
In addition to AndNowUKnow, Tour de Fresh works with the following sponsors: Americold, Atlas Produce, California Giant Berry Farms, CHEP, Church Brothers Farms, Coosemans Worldwide, Crunch Pak, C&S Wholesale Grocers, Del Monte, DMA Solutions, Duda Farm Fresh Foods, EBX Logistics, Emerson, Fight Like a Girl Foundation, Fruit Growers Supply, Good Foods, iTrade Network, JAZZ Apple, Lipman Produce, Mann Packing, Markon, Mission Produce, Ocean Mist Farms, Okanagan Specialty Fruits, Oppenheimer, Pajaro Valley, PRO*ACT, Produce Marketing Association, Renaissance Food Group, Robinson Fresh, Sakata Seed, Sunkist, Tanimura & Antle, Taylor Farms, Tsamma, TQL, United Fresh, Valley Produce, and Western Precooling.