United Fresh Announces Winners of 2021 Produce Excellence in Foodservice Awards

WASHINGTON, D.C. – United Fresh is proud to announce nine of the country’s most innovative chefs and foodservice professionals representing an array of culinary styles and backgrounds to be honored this June during the United Fresh 2021 Convention & Expo as part of the United Fresh Produce Excellence in Foodservice Award Program, sponsored by FreshEdge™.

The program honors chefs and their companies for their creativity in highlighting fresh produce on their menus, introducing diners to new flavors, and presenting creative ways to enjoy fresh produce.

“It’s always a privilege for us to recognize culinary stars who are creating Instagram-worthy dishes that thrill customers and lead to a renewed interest and excitement for fresh produce,” said Tom Stenzel, President & CEO, United Fresh Produce Association. “We consistently have a diverse representation of chefs and foodservice professionals throughout the industry who are demonstrating some of the most creative concepts.”

The 2021 Produce Excellence in Foodservice Award winners are:

  • Business in Industry:
    • Chef Stephen Palm, Director of Culinary, Lifeworks Restaurant Group, Beaverton, OR
  • Casual & Family Dining Restaurants:
    • Chef Sachia Tinsley, Chef/Owner, Peyrassol Café at Southport, Renton, WA
  • Colleges & Universities:
    • Chef Darren Lewis, Executive Chef, Dining Services, Quest Food Management Services at University of Indianapolis, Indianapolis, IN
  • Fine Dining Restaurants:
    • Chef Kyle Patrick Hash, Executive Chef, 28 North Gastropub, Melbourne, FL
  • Hospitals & Healthcare:
    • Chef Samantha Moore, Head Chef, Goshen Health, Goshen, IN
  • Hotels & Resorts:
    • Chef Kristin Butterworth, Executive Chef of Restaurants, Nemacolin Woodlands Resort & Spa, Framington, PA
  • K-12 School Foodservice:
    • Lauren Couchois, Culinary Specialist, Greenville County School District, Greenville, SC
  • Quick Service Restaurants:
    • Chef Matt Colgan, Culinary Director, MIXT, San Francisco, CA
  • Supermarkets & Retail Operators:
    • Sarah Griswold, Prepared Foods Manager, Green Zebra Grocery, Portland, OR

This year’s winners were selected from nominations submitted by produce companies and foodservice operations across North America. United Fresh coordinated a review of each nominee’s incorporation of fresh produce into menu development, use of food safety protocols for proper produce storage and handling, leadership in produce-related community service and special events, and recognition by their company and industry peers.

“We’re thrilled to support this excellent program to celebrate leading chefs and foodservice professionals who are elevating the profile, and increasing the consumption of, fresh produce,” said Steve Grinstead, Chief Executive Officer, FreshEdge™. “We are proud to recognize these nine winners for the important role in showcasing our industry and introducing their customers to a variety of fruit and vegetable concepts.”

The nine winners, along with an executive from their company, will participate in United Fresh 2021. They will be presented with their awards and featured in a panel discussion as part of the event’s programming.

For more information about the Produce Excellence in Foodservice Awards Program, visit www.unitedfresh.org or contact Miriam Wolk, Vice President, Member Services, at 202-303-3410 or mwolk@unitedfresh.org.


About United Fresh Produce Association

Founded in 1904, the United Fresh Produce Association brings together companies across every segment of the fresh produce supply chain, including growers, shippers, fresh cut processors, wholesalers, distributors, retailers, foodservice operators, industry suppliers and allied associations. We empower industry leaders to shape sound government policy. We deliver the resources and expertise companies need to succeed in managing complex business and technical issues. We provide the training and development individuals need to advance their careers in produce. Through these endeavors, we unite our industry with a common purpose – to build long-term value for our members and grow produce consumption.

About FreshEdge™

FreshEdge embodies a novel approach to fresh food distribution—combining leading regional produce distributors who can deliver tailored customer service with an extensive selection of fresh produce, proteins, fresh-cut produce, prepared foods and specialty items to meet the ever-changing consumer demand for fresh, local, innovative cuisine.The FreshEdge family of companies delivers customized fresh food distribution solutions to its ever-expanding network of food-centric customers across the United States. For more information, visit www.freshedgefoods.com.