Who has what it takes? That is the question the Texas International Produce Association (TIPA) asks as it announces its call to participate in the third annual Viva Fresh Clean Eating Challenge. The challenge captured the attention of the produce industry-leading into this past year’s Viva Fresh Expo, as 40 participants challenged themselves to incorporate more fruits and vegetables into their daily routines.
Since the challenge's launch in 2019, participating members have been involved in the challenge during different phases of the pandemic, making it even more impressive that they have collectively lost over 600 pounds and counting.
This year’s challenge kicks off on November 5th and will culminate at the 2022 Viva Fresh Expo in Dallas on April 23rd.
Spots are limited, and participants will be chosen through their applications. The criteria:
- Be a member of the produce industry.
- Be able to express what is driving them to compete in the challenge.
- Be willing to share progress online and as part of the reveal at the Viva Fresh Keynote next April.
- Show willingness to commit to the challenge: this is not a weight-loss competition but rather a challenge to add more fruits and vegetables to their daily diets while reducing processed foods and adopting healthier habits.
- Commit to engaging with mentors/advisors on a week to week basis.
Those interested in joining the challenge can apply here by October 15 at 11:59 pm CT.
Participants receive a FitBit and Fitbit Scale to track progress. All chosen participants will receive peer mentorship, nutrition and fitness coaching. Upon meeting the given criteria, they will also be eligible to win either a membership to a meal subscription service or a Tonal smart home for completing the challenge.
“Since the inception of the Viva Fresh Expo, health and wellness has been one of the main cornerstones of our mission and vision,” said Dante Galeazzi, president & CEO of TIPA. “As we lead the next generation of the produce industry, we must continue to pursue improved health and wellness.”
Mentors offering peer support are:
- Ashley Ojeda Porter, H-E-B
- Blake LaGrange, Power Alley Velo
- Ed Bertaud, IFCO
- John Toner, United Fresh Produce Association
- James Bassetti III, Little Bear Produce
- TJ Flowers, Lone Star Citrus Growers
“The Clean Eating Challenge offered me a sense of community and support during a very odd time in our lives when so much felt uncertain,” said Jen Velasquez, Clean Eating Challenge Committee chair and 2020/2021 participant. “The challenge isn’t about losing the most weight but rather a chance to put your health at the forefront, be more conscious of the foods you consume and hold yourself accountable to reach your wellness goals.”
The Clean Eating Challenge is a Viva Fresh Expo sponsorship opportunity. Those interested in becoming sponsors can contact Hector Garza for more information.