Dole providing culinary training to Jackson youth

Updated: Jun. 17, 2021 at 9:39 PM CDT
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JACKSON, Miss. (WLBT) - This summer, Dole Foods is working with the Jackson Boys and Girls Club to expand their culinary horizons.

The company is hoping to provide youth with healthy food options and is training them on how to prepare it.

His name is Juan Carlos Dalto and he’s the President of Dole Foods for North and South America.

Thursday he hung out with kids in the Boys and Girls Club of Jackson where his company has helped start a youth culinary school. The kids are learning the importance of farm to table.

Local growers are getting involved too, proving fruits and vegetables.

Juan Carlos Dalto
Juan Carlos Dalto(David Kenney)

Juan Carlos Dalto said, “We think that good nutrition should be a human right. We believe there are a number of opportunities in America to help and teach people about what a good balanced diet is, what good nutrition is.”

For the kids, this is exposing them to foods they’ve never had before. Local chefs like Nick Wallace are also joining the program with Dole, training the kids on culinary techniques.

Dole doesn’t want to stop just there.

They’re also meeting with local stakeholders hoping to expand their program with a youth workforce development program. They’re already looking at space at the old farmers market as a possible site.

Kevin Coogan of Hope Credit Union said, “It’s super exciting! The time is come, right? We’ve all been kind of locked away for the last 18 months and this is perfect. The group here has been working for several years. Seems to align perfectly with Dole’s mission, we’ll see what happens.”

Jackson is the first city to team up with Dole for a youth program of this kind and it’s so successful they’re expanding to the Baltimore Boys and Girls Club.

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