Last updated on April 18, 2014 at 17:24 EDT

Food Industry Rallies to Support Hungry Neighbors in Need

May 24, 2012

Special Event Raises 1.9 million meals for Northern Illinois Food Bank

GENEVA, Ill., May 24, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — More than 600 food industry and Chicago executives from companies including Jewel-Osco®, Abbott Fund, Bank of America, Dominick’s, Meijer®, PepsiCo, Sara Lee, Strack & Van Til, Tate & Lyle and Ultra Foods, enjoyed tastings from 27 local restaurants last week at an event to raise meals for hungry neighbors in need served by Northern Illinois Food Bank (http://www.SolveHungerToday.org).

(Photo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20120524/DC13779)

Doug Cygan, Vice President of Merchandising, Jewel-Osco, and his wife, Shonna Cygan, chaired the inaugural A Taste That Matters, presented by Jewel-Osco. Proceeds from the event will help Northern Illinois Food Bank provide 1.9 million meals to hungry neighbors in 13 counties.

As food industry representatives mingled and bid on silent auction items, Billboard Top 10 jazz artist and owner of Flo Wines Marcus Johnson performed.

“Feeding people is fundamental to the core of our business, and the Jewel-Osco team is happy to support Northern Illinois Food Bank in feeding neighbors who need extra help putting food on the table,” said Cygan.

“And although the 1.9 million meals are a godsend, we still have a long way to go to solve hunger in northern Illinois,” said Pete Schaefer, president and CEO, Northern Illinois Food Bank.

In Northern Illinois one in eight people face hunger. Northern Illinois Food Bank’s network of food pantries, soup kitchens, shelters and youth and senior feeding programs provide food to more than 60,000 people each week.

“We are extremely grateful to Doug, Shonna, Jewel-Osco, and all the sponsors, restaurants and attendees for helping us ensure our hungry neighbors have access to food in their time of need,” said Schaefer. “The outpouring of support from our friends in the food industry and supporting companies will do much to help us address hunger in the suburbs.”

Restaurants participating in A Taste That Matters included Antico Posto, Black Steer Charhouse, Buca di Beppo, Constellation Brands, Drury Lane Oakbrook Terrace, E&J Gallo, Emilio’s Tapas, Eyrie Restaurant at Robert Morris University, Glen Prairie, Harry Caray’s Italian Steakhouse, Heaven on Seven, Jimmy’s Charhouse, Jo Snow Syrups, Meson Sabika, Miss Dottie’s Pound Cake, Mon Ami Gabi, RA Sushi Bar, Redstone American Grill, Reel Club, Starfruit Cafe, Steve Buresh’s Cheesecake Store, SugarToad at the Hotel Arista, The Capital Grille, The Grotto, The Winery Exchange, Weber Grill and Wildfire.

A member of Feeding America, Northern Illinois Food Bank is a non-profit organization that engages the community in a commitment to feed our hungry neighbors. Across 13 counties, food manufacturers, local groceries, corporations, foundations, and individuals come together to donate food and funds, and evaluate and repack food for distribution to Northern Illinois Food Bank’s 600 network partners – the food pantries, soup kitchens, shelters and youth and senior feeding programs that serve more than 60,000 different people each week. That commitment provided 29 million meals last year to those in need. Find out how you can Volunteer – Donate – Get Involved at www.SolveHungerToday.org.

Contact: Donna Larkin Lake, 630-443-6910, dlake@northernilfoodbank.org

SOURCE Northern Illinois Food Bank

Source: PR Newswire