NEW YORK, July 11, 2017
After every Summer Fancy Food Show, there is a mass exodus from the Jacob Javits Center…and then a mass entrance. As the exhibit booths are broken down, carpeting is rolled up; and attendees leave in droves, it's time for 253 City Harvest volunteers, sporting bright green shirts and even brighter smiles, to enter.
The Summer Fancy Food Show, the largest specialty food trade show in North America, provides the largest single donation of the year through the Specialty Food Foundation to City Harvest. This year, exhibitor donations filled 175 pallets with food. Within a day or so, it was all delivered to 10 hunger relief agencies in Manhattan, the Bronx, and Queens just in time for the 4th of July weekend.
The process starts with the remarkable generosity of Show exhibitors. The Specialty Food Foundation facilitates donations and the amount of food given this year was up 9.4% over 2016. "Companies do good for the hungry of New York City while also taking advantage of tax benefits and saving on drayage and shipping," says Ron Tanner, vice president of philanthropy, government, and industry relations for the Specialty Food Foundation. "It's great for everyone."
"This year, we collected nearly 104,000 pounds of food from donors at the Fancy Food Show," said Racine Droz, Associate Director of Food Sourcing for City Harvest. "It was a tremendous effort on the part of all our volunteers, and we were thrilled to distribute these donations to soup kitchens and food pantries across New York City who usually don't see this quality of food."
West Side Campaign Against Hunger (WSCAH) was one of the recipients of the donated food. Within hours of the Show's closing, City Harvest trucks arrived, bringing hundreds of pounds of yogurt, cheese, meat, healthy snack foods, cooking sauces and other specialty foods. Says Chef Gregory Silverman, executive director of WSCAH, "Our customers look forward to the food from the Show. This amazing delivery of high quality and diverse foods is core to making sure we are working as a community to provide choices and options for all our community. And truthfully, the truckload of amazing food arrived at the end of month, when many of our customers SNAP benefits have run out, and they are hungry and feeling most vulnerable."
About the Specialty Food Association
The Specialty Food Association is a thriving community of food artisans, importers and entrepreneurs. Established in 1952 in New York, the not-for-profit trade association provides its 3,500 members in the U.S. and abroad with resources, knowledge and connections to champion and nurture their companies in an always-evolving marketplace. The Association owns and produces the Winter and Summer Fancy Food Shows, and presents the sofi™ Awards honoring excellence in specialty food. Learn more at specialtyfood.com.
About City Harvest
City Harvest pioneered food rescue in 1982 and, this year, will collect 59 million pounds of excess food to help feed the nearly 1.3 million New Yorkers struggling to put meals on their tables. Through relationships with farms, grocers, restaurants, and manufacturers, City Harvest collects nutritious food that would otherwise go to waste and delivers it free of charge to 500 soup kitchens, food pantries and other community food programs across the five boroughs. In addition, our Healthy Neighborhoods initiative addresses long term food insecurity through community partnerships that work to increase access to affordable and wholesome food. To learn more about food rescue, Healthy Neighborhoods and fighting hunger in New York City, visit cityharvest.org.
About West Side Campaign Against Hunger
West Side Campaign Against Hunger has been working for 38 years to change our perception of hungry people by working in partnership with them, providing food with dignity, and empowering customers to find solutions. Through a supermarket-style food pantry, West Side Campaign Against Hunger alleviates hunger and creates a culture that promotes self-reliance and works for change.