Three onsite segment chefs were among six culinarians selected as winners of the 2013 United Fresh Produce Excellence in Foodservice Awards. They include...
• Kevin LaPittus, director of child nutrition services for the Encinitas (CA) USD;
• Joshua Distenfeld, executive chef at Oriole Park at Camden Yards in Baltimore; and
• Chad Tyler Brodkin of the Inn at Virginia Tech and Skelton Conference Center in Blacksburg.
Sponsored by Pro*Act, LLC, and now in its sixth year, the program honors chefs and their companies for their innovative and influential use of fresh produce in the culinary arts. The United Fresh Produce Association will formally recognize the six winners at United Fresh 2013, the association's annual convention and expo in San Diego, May 14-16.
"These winners have made extraordinary dishes that feature fresh fruits and vegetables mainstays on their menus, and for the important role that they play in showcasing our industry, we are proud to honor them," says United Fresh CEO Tom Stenzel. "We appreciate their tremendous commitment and recognize Pro*Act's generous support in honoring these winners and their positive impact on our nation's dining habits."
The six winners were selected from nearly 120 nominations submitted by produce companies and foodservice operations across North America. A panel of produce and foodservice industry leaders reviewed each nominee's demonstrated incorporation of fresh produce into menu development, use of protocols for correct storage and handling of produce, leadership in produce related community service and special events and recognition by their company and industry peers.