Contact: Marcia Paulson, (701) 232-6219
Area chefs partner with the Great Plains Food Bank to end hunger
Proceeds from 16th annual Chefs’ Gala & Auction provide food for 650,000 meals to those in need
October 10, 2013 – Fargo, ND – Local chefs and beverage purveyors presented their signature dishes, finest wines and decadent desserts to a sold-out room of 600 guests at the 16th annual Chefs’ Gala & Auction held last night at the Ramada Plaza and Suites. Proceeds from the event benefit the Great Plains Food Bank’s perishable food recovery effort, Daily Bread. The Great Plains Food Bank is a program of Lutheran Social Services of North Dakota.
The Daily Bread perishable food recovery effort collects surplus food from more than 50 local grocery stores, restaurants, hospitals, colleges, hotels and bakeries and then delivers it to more than 40 soup kitchens, shelters, food pantries and other charitable feeding programs serving those who are hungry or homeless. Last year, Daily Bread recovered food for 1.7 million meals, providing emergency food assistance to one in 11 individuals in the Cass-Clay community – 37% of them children.
“Our mission is to end hunger through community partnerships,” said Marcia Paulson, director of marketing and development for the Great Plains Food Bank. “The Chefs’ Gala brings together hundreds of chefs, financial sponsors and guests who have a passion for both good food and meeting the hunger needs of our neighbors. Together, we are making a difference.”
For every dollar raised at this year’s event, the Great Plains Food Bank can distribute 10 meals to those in need, making it one of the most cost-efficient hunger relief efforts in the region. Preliminary figures indicate that funds raised at last night’s gala will provide more than 650,000 meals to children, seniors and families struggling with hunger.
New to this year’s event was the People’s Choice Awards, which were presented to the following businesses and their culinary teams:
• Best savory dish: Mezzaluna, a restaurant located on Roberts Street in Fargo
• Best dessert: Minnesota State Community and Technical College culinary arts students
• Best overall food presentation: Zest, a restaurant located in the Radisson Hotel
This event was generously supported by Merrill Lynch, which served as the event’s Platinum Plate sponsor, and by the Dakota Medical Foundation, which issued a $5,000 match challenge to guests who made an additional contribution to hunger relief.
About the Great Plains Food Bank
The Great Plains Food Bank engages community partners to end hunger. As the state’s largest hunger-relief provider, the Great Plains Food Bank partner network includes 266 charitable feeding programs operating in 104 communities across North Dakota and Clay County, Minnesota. Celebrating its 30th year of service, the Great Plains Food Bank and its statewide partner network of food pantries, shelters, soup kitchens and other charitable feeding programs have distributed food for more than 100 million meals to children seniors and families in need since opening its doors in 1983. The Great Plains Food Bank is a program of Lutheran Social Services of North Dakota, a statewide social services agency serving thousands of North Dakotans in need with affordable housing, food, disaster recovery, counseling and therapy and other programs that strengthen individuals, families and communities without regard to clients’ race, religion, gender or economic status; and a member of Feeding America, the nation’s food bank network.