Celebrating the amazing power of produce, this year’s Produce for Better Health Foundation Consumer Connection Summit took place in scenic Scottsdale, AZ April 22-25, 2019 under sunny blue skies.  Launching a fresh new campaign, “Have a Plant”, PBH connected consumers’ increasing interest with adding more plants to their diet to their ongoing work increasing fruit and vegetable consumption.

But make no mistake, this was a true celebration!  Credentialed influencers flooded the summit, as well as social media channels, with messages about the variety of delicious and easy ways you can add more plants to everyone’s diet.  Participants ranged from registered dietitians in food service, retail and schools; growers, commodity board members and farmers; to students showcasing their innovative food startups.  And of course, there was delicious food!

Powerful Produce Pairings:  Using Flavor Synergy to Create Deliciousness

A highlight of the Summit was the “perfect pairing” of Amy Myrdal-Miller, MS, RDN, FAND, and Chef Ron DeSantis to highlight delightful duos that bring nutrient-packed ingredients together in surprising and delightful ways.  Starting with an incredible Avocado and Potato Hash with a Sunny Side Egg, through to a Potato and Lobster Casserole with Cheddar Bechamel and a Crunchy Apple Dippers with Creamy Peanut Butter Mousse, this lively session was a great example of how powerful partnerships of plant and animal protein can come together on the plate.

Sustainability + Nutrition

Sustainability and nutrition are now inextricably linked and Campbell Soup Company’s Director of Sustainable Agriculture, Dr. Daniel Sonke, educated on diverse topics in sustainability such as how soil health may or may not impact the nutrient value of plants, the limitations and benefits of organic produce, and how companies reduce food waste through thoughtful processing (Campbells uses 99% of the tomatoes picked!).  With health professionals increasingly engaged in the conversation of sustainability, this provided an evidence-based overview of where we stand today.

Other sessions touched on topics such as how diverse forms of produce (canned, frozen, dried) can increase consumption and acceptance; the critical role of behavior change techniques and how letting go of limiting beliefs can jump start a new perspective on your life and health.

For more on how to join the #haveaplant movement, visit www.pbhfoundation.org.