( Courtesy Food Fight GA )

Food Fight GA, established during the COVID-19 pandemic to help Atlanta-area restaurant workers and farmers who supply the restaurants, is being recognized with a Produce Marketing Association Impact Award.

The organization sources fresh produce from area farms whose normal foodservice customers are closed, temporarily or permanently, or are serving fewer patrons, and makes it available to the restaurant workers affected from the blow the pandemic dealt the foodservice industry.

“It’s truly innovative to see opportunity where others cannot, but what I find most impressive and worthy of recognition is the dedication to growing a healthier world by ensuring that produce can find its way to those most in need,” Lauren M. Scott, PMA chief strategy and membership officer, said in a news release.

Georgia Organics, a program designed link local organic farms to chefs, spearheaded Food Fight GA.

Funding from the Jamestown Charitable Foundation and Ponce City Market makes the program possible, according to the release. The program has distributed 3,900 produce boxes to restaurant workers. More than half of the of the farmers who’ve participated are black, indigenous and people of color.

Deborah VanTrece, executive chef and owner of Twisted Soul Cookhouse & Pours, has had to cut back at her restaurant.

“We’re all struggling here,” VanTrece said in the release. “Quite often people are wondering where their next meal is coming from, or they’re making a choice to pay rent or to eat. That is not a choice that any of us should have to make. The Food Fight GA program provides food and closes that gap and takes worry off of our employees.”

The PMA established the Impact Award to recognize individuals and organizations growing a healthier world through produce and floral.

PMA has a video on Food Fight GA on its website.

The first recipient of the PMA Impact Award is Jones Valley Teaching Farm.

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