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Organic Ocean, Chefs’ Table Society and LunchLAB Bringing Spot Prawn Fest to Families in Need

Photo by Meighan Makarchuk

The GOODS from Fresh Roots

Vancouver, BC | Each spring, chefs and consumers alike anxiously await the start of the beloved spot prawn season. Traditionally, the season kicks off with the popular Spot Prawn Festival, hosted by the Chefs’ Table Society of BC (CTS). This year, as a result of Covid-19 and physical distancing, the 14th annual festival, scheduled for the Sunday of the Victoria Long weekend was cancelled. As well, many restaurants that normally purchase the first catch of spot prawns are still closed. The Spot Prawn Festival may not be able to go ahead as planned, but working together, Organic Ocean, the CTS, and LunchLAB: Chefs for Families are reinventing the celebration to fit with these turbulent times.

Organic Ocean is generously donating 100lbs of their first catch of spot prawns from opening day to the LunchLAB: Chefs for Families program. Regarding the donation, Guy Dean of Organic Ocean stated that, “It was the least we could do to provide the first spot prawns of the year to those members in our community who need highly nutritional food the most because food is a right and not a privilege.” The handoff of the 100lbs of spot prawns will happen on June 4th at Falsecreek Fishermen’s Wharf in the evening between 6:30pm and 6:45pm with proper social distancing protocols in place.

On June 4th and 5th, prominent Vancouver chefs and CTS members, including Will Lew, Dennis Peckham, Nicole Gomes, and Mariana Gabilondo will join the LunchLAB chefs to create the CTS signature Spot Prawn Festival Chowder. CTS President Robert Belcham noted that, “The Annual Spot Prawn Festival is the Chefs’ Table Society’s signature event that brings people of all demographics to False Creek Fishermen’s Wharf to learn about sustainable seafood while enjoying the chowder, sunshine, and atmosphere. It’s a day that boosts everyone up and we hope that by bringing the Spot Prawn Chowder to these families they’ll feel that boost and know how much they matter.”

On June 5th, 120+ families in need served by the LunchLAB program will get this special soup along with a selection of other delicious, healthy weekly meals. LunchLAB: Chefs for Families prepare more than 5,000 meals every week, ensuring more than 260 families in need have three nutritious and delicious meals every day. The program is a collaboration between Fresh Roots and Growing Chefs! and runs in partnership with Ono Vancouver, the Italian Cultural Centre, and Pacific Restaurant Supply.  Growing Chefs!’ Executive Director Helen Stortini shared that “Spot Prawn season is typically such a joyous time. We’re grateful this year that this joy has not been lost and is being shared in a new way. We’re eager to tell the families about the significance of Spot Prawns in Vancouver. We’re also so thankful to Organic Ocean and the Chefs’ Table Society for this generous support.”

The public can help by ordering up a meal for a family that can use a little extra support right now with a donation at LunchLAB.ca. Each order placed, provides fresh, healthy, restaurant-quality meals, salad-making kits, fresh produce and pantry staples to families. Spot prawns will be available for purchase right off the the Organic Ocean boats or on their online shop.

LunchLAB would like to thank the following supporters for their generous contributions:

Community Food Centres Canada
Social Venture Partners Vancouver
Vancouver Foundation
The Vancouver Sun Children’s Fund Adopt-A-School
United Way
Breakfast Club of Canada
Whole Foods Market
Pacific Restaurant Supply
Cropthorne Farm
Discovery Organics
Gordon Food Service
Nature’s Path
Yen Bros Food Service
Fresh Prep
Fresh St. Market
Odd Society Spirits
Manson Communications
Cloud 9 Gluten Free
Flight Kitchen
Bon Bon Bakery
Dan’s Legacy
Columbus Meat Market
Bosa Foods
Mon Paris Patisserie
Bobs and Lolo
Organic Ocean

About LunchLAB: Chefs for Families | Both Fresh Roots Urban Farm Society and Growing Chefs! believe food can be a catalyst for positive change and a source of joy and inspiration, even during challenging times. With the closure of schools due to COVID-19, Fresh Roots and Growing Chefs!, working with the Vancouver School Board and a fantastic team of collaborators and supporters (including the Italian Cultural Centre of Vancouver, Ono Vancouver and Pacific Restaurant Supply), quickly pivoted its innovative LunchLAB educational in-school meal program to offer students and their families delicious, healthy, chef-prepared meals out of school. These meals not only provide much-needed nourishment, but meaningful employment for chefs and kitchen professionals who would otherwise not be working. LunchLAB: Chefs for Families continues to bring comfort and enjoyment the best way chefs know how—through non-stigmatizing, tasty meals especially for those in need of a little extra help right now. LunchLAB: Chefs for Families is providing more than 5,000 meals to 260 families each week. More info at lunchlab.ca or find them on Instagram at @growingchefs and @FreshRootsFarms.

About Organic Ocean Seafood Inc. | Born from a desire to balance fishing traditions with long term environmental health, Organic Ocean Seafood Inc. was launched by West Coast fishers who recognized that sustainable livelihoods rely upon sustainable fisheries. Committed to environmentally friendly harvesting and responsible aquaculture production, socially responsible values, and the provision of extraordinarily high quality seafood, Organic Ocean has gained a reputation for depth of product knowledge and unparalleled service and consistency in supplying sustainable seafood to restaurants, hotels and retailers throughout North America and Southeast Asia. A Certified B Corporation, Organic Ocean is also a member of 1% for the Planet through which it supports wild salmon enhancement and environmental rehabilitation work. Shop online: https://shop.organicocean.com/ Found on Instagram @organicoceanseafood

About the Chefs’ Table Society of BC | The Chefs’ Table Society of British Columbia is a province-wide collaborative dedicated to creating a foundation for the exchange of information between culinary professionals. We support innovative and sustainable programs that will inspire, educate and nurture our chefs, our producers and our local food industry. We promote standards of excellence with the aim of enhancing the reputation of our regional cuisine. Find them on Instagram @ChefsTableBC

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