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Top Chefs Earn Top Honors at United Fresh 2014

Apr 16, 2014

Winners of 7th Annual Produce Excellence in Foodservice Awards Spotlight Fresh Produce

WASHINGTON, DC – Seven of the country’s most exciting chefs and foodservice professionals representing an array of culinary styles and backgrounds will be honored this June as part of the United Fresh Produce Excellence in Foodservice Awards Program. Sponsored by PRO*ACT LLC, and now in its seventh 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 seven winners at United Fresh 2014, the association’s annual convention and expo in Chicago, June 10-13, 2014.

“We at PRO*ACT continue to be amazed at the creativity, vision, and dedication to fresh produce shown by the honorees in this program,” said PRO*ACT President Max Yeater. “We are so proud to be a sponsor of the Produce Excellence in Foodservice Awards and we thank all of the nominees and chefs who work so hard to increase the consumption of healthful fresh fruits and vegetables.”

The seven winners were selected from more than 130 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.

“These winners have made extraordinary dishes that feature fresh fruit and vegetable mainstays on their menus and we are proud to honor them for the important role they play in showcasing our industry,” said United Fresh CEO Tom Stenzel. “We appreciate their tremendous commitment and recognize PRO*ACT’s generous support in honoring these winners and their positive influence on restaurant menus across the nation.”

The winning chefs, along with an executive from their company, will attend United Fresh 2014 in Chicago. All honorees will participate in a panel session, Restaurant Flavors and Trends from the Best, on Thursday, June 12 at 1:30 p.m.

The 2014 Produce Excellence in Foodservice Award winners are:

  • Business in Industry: Chef Daniel Benigno, Guckenheimer Executive Chef at TD Ameritrade, Omaha, NE
  • Casual & Family Dining Restaurants: Chef Carlito Jocson, Executive Chef, Yard House, Irvine, CA
  • Colleges & Universities: Chef Chandon Clenard, Senior Executive Chef, Stanford University Residential Dining Services, Stanford, CA
  • Fine Dining Restaurants: Chef Adam Hegsted, Chef/Owner for Eat Good, Wandering Table and Yards Bruncheon, Spokane, WA
  • Hotels & Healthcare: Chef Rolf Nettesheim, Executive Chef & Food Service Director, The Palace Group, Miami, FL
  • K-12 School Foodservice: Chef Jason Morse, Executive Chef, Douglas County School District, Castle Rock, CO
  • Quick Service Restaurants: Jeff Sinelli, Founder, CEO and Chief Vibe Officer, Which Wich, Dallas, TX

For more information on the Produce Excellence in Foodservice Award program, please contact Miriam Miller Wolk at 202-303-3410.


Founded in 1904, the United Fresh ProduceAssociation serves companies at the forefront of the global fresh and fresh-cut produce industry, including growers, shippers, fresh-cut processors, wholesalers, distributors, retailers, foodservice operators, industry suppliers and allied associations. From its headquarters in Washington, D.C. and Western Regional office in Salinas, Calif., United Fresh and its members work year-round to make a difference for the produce industry by driving policies that increase consumption of fresh produce, shaping critical legislative and regulatory action, providing scientific and technical leadership in food safety, quality assurance, nutrition and health, and developing educational programs and business opportunities to assist member companies in growing successful businesses. For more information, visit or call 202-303-3400.

PRO*ACT is North America’s leading distributor of fresh food to the foodservice and retail industries, sourcing from premier national, regional and local farmers. PRO*ACT streamlines the produce supply chain, offering significant cost benefits and an easy, one-call solution to source the freshest produce from more than 70 third-party inspected, independently owned, local distribution centers across the United States and Canada. PRO*ACT provides category cost management through commodity contract pricing, in-house consultation services and integrated produce program distribution management. For more information, please visit PRO*ACT online.

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