Texas International Produce Association Announces Third Annual Clean Eating Challenge; Dante Galeazzi and Jen Velasquez Comment
MISSION, TX - Healthy eating is more than a fad—it is a way of life. Amplifying the produce-based lifestyle, Texas International Produce Association (TIPA) is rallying industry members to participate in the third annual Viva Fresh Clean Eating Challenge, an industry-wide initiative that challenges individuals to incorporate more fruits and vegetables into their daily diets.
“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 and Chief Executive Officer of TIPA. “As we lead the next generation of the produce industry, we must continue to pursue improved health and wellness, and that starts with increasing our consumption of fruits and vegetables. The Clean Eating Challenge participants, both past and present, are our ambassadors in achieving that goal and prove that each and every person, regardless of age, gender, physical challenges, or home/work responsibilities, can make positive changes that improve their health and wellness.”
Since its inception, the challenge has led to a collective loss of over 600 pounds across its participants, a press release explained. Now, the association is inviting those in the industry to apply for this year’s challenge, which will take place from November 5 through the 2022 Viva Fresh Expo in Dallas, Texas, on April 23.
This year, the Clean Eating Challenge format will focus on a smaller group selected to receive guidance from nutrition and fitness experts, as well as other mentors who will help guide them throughout their journey. Some of the mentors who will offer peer support to this year’s participants 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
According to the release, spots are limited, and participants will be chosen through an application process if they meet the following 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 their mentors and advisors on a week-to-week basis for the duration of the program
All chosen participants will receive a FitBit and Fitbit Scale to track their progress, in addition to peer mentorship, nutrition, and fitness coaching. Participants will also be eligible to win a choice of two prizes: a yearlong membership to a meal subscription service or a Tonal smart home gym (a $4,000 value) for completing the challenge.
“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. You can do anything for six months—but it will hopefully be the gateway to the rest of your (healthy) life.”
Think you have what it takes to tackle this year’s Clean Eating Challenge? The countdown to register begins now.