The Chez Panisse Foundation was founded in 1996 by Alice Waters in celebration of the 25th anniversary of her famous Berkley, California restaurant, Chez Panisse. CPF supports educational programs that “nurture, educate, and empower youth” through food. Additionally, the foundation is very involved in the school lunch reform movement, specifically in the Berkley Unified School District.
Chez Panisse also works through the Edible Schoolyard project at Martin Luther King, Jr. Middle School in Berkeley, which consists of a one-acre organic garden on the school grounds as well as a fully functioning kitchen classroom. All students in the school participate in the program and learn the importance of healthy diets, hard work, and the plant life cycle. In 2008, King Middle School’s new lunch room, the Dining Commons, opened. Here, students are able to learn about and utilize composting and recycling, as well as real table settings, allowing children to make the connection from garden, to kitchen, to dining room.
The Chez Panisse Foundation also helped found an affiliate program in 2005 in New Orleans, Louisiana, at the Samuel J. Green Charter School. Since then, CPF has also partnered with the Boys and Girls Club at the Willie Mays Clubhouse in the Hunter’s Point area of San Francisco, The Greensboro Children’s Museum in Greensboro, North Carolina, and recently broke ground on The Edible Schoolyard New York!
Throughout the month of November, Pacific Merchants Trading Company is pleased to offer a $25 gift certificate to those who donate $25 or more to the Chez Panisse Foundation! Simply email proof of donation by November 30th to [email protected] and get a $25 coupon toward your purchase!