The first 60 days of 2017 were busy, exciting ones for M Culinary Concepts – particularly for our M Catering by Michael’s team as they crisscrossed the country. We had the privilege of catering three of the nation’s most high-profile spectator events: the official CFP Championship Game Tailgate in Tampa, Florida, and Barrett-Jackson Collector Car Auction and the Waste Management Phoenix Open in Scottsdale, Arizona. We fed tens of thousands of attendees in catered hospitality areas and at a variety of concessions stands.
After these events, we gathered all the leftover food and determined what we would be able to donate to local organizations. In the weeks leading up to the CFP Championship Tailgate, we made arrangements with Feeding Tampa Bay, a member of the national group Feeding America (http://feedingamerica.org), to pick up what turned out to be 7,000 pounds of food! Feeding Tampa Bay distributed everything to several organizations who in turn prepared 5,700 meals for food-insecure area residents, as reported in the January/February issue of Catering magazine. After our Scottsdale events, we donated leftover food to Waste NOT! (http://wastenotaz.org) which distributed food to organizations throughout metropolitan Phoenix.
Food insecurity is a global issue, one that affects millions of people in every part of the world including right here in the United States. According to Feeding America, in 2015, 42.2 million Americans lived in food insecure households, including 29.1 million adults and 13.1 million children. Sadly 13 percent of households (15.8 million households) were food insecure, and five percent of households (6.3 million households) experienced very low food security. Food insecurity in Florida and Arizona is near the national average, and we at M Culinary Concepts want to do our part to help those in our community who need it.
We each as individuals can help, too. We can donate our own excess food directly to local organizations – we don’t have to wait for the next “canned food drive” at work! We can volunteer in a number of ways, from helping with a fundraiser to serving food to others. We can find information online about food insecurity and its impact on all of us, not just the hungry. We can research organizations in our communities and find ways to support them. The bottom line is…we can help those in need, so we will!