Our Process

Eight steps to Brighter Bites.

Step 1

Engage
Communities

Step 2

Select the
Week’s Variety

Step 3

Load Up!

Step 4

Bag the
Produce

Step 5

Teach
Brighter Choices

Step 6

Sample
& Share

Step 7

Take Home
the Fun

Step 8

Replicate

Engage

Select

Load

Bag

Teach

Sample

Take

Replicate

Step One

Engage
Communities

It all starts with the right relationships. We engage schools, communities, and partners and introduce them to our Brighter Bites model: produce distribution + nutrition education + a fun food experience.

From local farmers to leading university researchers, teachers to three-generation families, it takes teamwork to build a culture of health. Brighter Bites was built to scale, and we make it as easy as possible for communities.

A LITTLE HEART PLUS ONE MAGIC FORMULA

HEALTHY CHANGE: LOCALLY SOWN, NATIONALLY GROWN!

Step Two

Select the
Week’s Variety

Our produce suppliers donate fresh fruits and vegetables to our partnering food banks. Each week, our staff chooses 8 to 12 different types of produce from the huge warehouse coolers, and the food is specially tagged for Brighter Bites.

Working closely with leaders like Sysco not only helps us ensure that a wide variety of fruits and vegetables are available for Brighter Bites, but also that the food meets stringent standards of safety, quality, and traceable tastiness—no matter its shape or size!

WE CHOOSE OUR PRODUCE AS CAREFULLY AS WE CHOOSE OUR PARTNERS

WE EMBRACE THE FUNFAMILIAR, FROM SWISS CHARD TO STARFRUIT!

Step Three

Load Up!

Massive pallets teeming with bags and cases of fresh produce for Brighter Bites are loaded by warehouse staff into a large box truck. It is hard work: each truckload can feed hundreds of families.

Each pallet carries 1500 lbs of fresh produce

The truck can hold 8-10 pallets (enough to feed 400 families!)

Step Four

Bag the
Produce

Once the truck arrives at the site, it is typically unloaded into a gym or cafeteria. Unified in our bright red t-shirts, Brighter Bites staff, parents, and community volunteers work as an assembly line to unpack and divide the variety of produce into bags.

Each family and teacher receives two bags of fresh fruits and vegetables. Staples like potatoes, onions, carrots, and apples are typically included—along with unique seasonal picks that give families the chance to take home top crops like kale, kiwi, beets, plums, or rutabaga.

TWO BAGS OF FRESH FRUITS AND VEGETABLES PER FAMILY

200-800 BAGS WILL BE LINED UP ONCE THE PROCESS IS COMPLETE!

Step Five

Teach
Brighter Choices

Also added into the bags are nutrition handbooks, tip sheets, and recipes that incorporate that week’s fresh produce. These bilingual materials are chock full of helpful info and advice, from kitchen safety to smarter snacking to making a healthier menu.

All educational materials are linked to children’s in-class nutrition lessons from CATCH and other evidence-based, coordinated school health programs that we help implement via our specially-trained staff.

Nearly 100 bilingual recipes exist in our database

CATCH IS BACKED BY NEARLY 25 YEARS OF UNIVERSITY RESEARCH

Step Six

Sample
& Share

Let the fun food experience begin! Our team prepares healthy, tasty “brighter bites” for families to sample, using one or more of the produce items being shared that week.

The recipe for that very demo also waits in the bags, ready to be taken home and tried out. Kids and their families taste new dips, soups, snacks, main dishes, and more—and they never leave without a stop at our happenin’ tattoo station.

OUR SIGNATURE SAMPLES ARE CONCOCTED BY IN-HOUSE NUTRITIONISTS

HULK SMOOTHIE, ANYONE?

Step Seven

Take Home
the Fun

When all is said and done, each family and teacher walks away with a pair of bags that contains approximately 50 servings of fresh, seasonal produce, plus tips and tools for how to use it.

For one week for a family of four, that’s two extra servings of fruits and vegetables a day—at no extra cost to our participating families.

Light fare, heavy load: one set of bags = 20-25 lbs!

2 extra servings of fruits & vegetables a day

At no extra cost

Step Eight

Replicate

This process repeats for 16 weeks during the school year and 8 weeks during the summer. Our scalable co-op model allows us to bring Brighter Bites to more schools  and camps each season, creating a culture of health wherever we go.

DURING THE SCHOOL YEAR AND SUMMERS

WE’VE PASSED OUT OVER 15 MILLION POUNDS OF PRODUCE TO MORE THAN 40,000 FAMILIES

Ok y’all - these Kingsted masks are our favorite. We’re delivering food to more than 50,000 families each week across the US, so we needed some that were comfortable, breathable and helped tell our story. For every mask sold, they’re donating one to communities in need! ...

Creating healthy communities, the core of Brighter Bites, includes treating all people equally, with dignity and respect. Brighter Bites stands alongside our Black families, teachers, and staff, and we will not tolerate racism, discrimination or hate. ...

Creating healthy communities includes treating all people with dignity and respect. Brighter Bites stands with the communities we serve, where racism, discrimination, and hate have no place. ...

Creating healthy communities includes treating all people with dignity and respect. Brighter Bites stands with the communities we serve, where racism, discrimination, and hate have no place. ...

Brighter Bites is thrilled to announce our wine for a cause virtual event was a success! With your help, we raised more than $100,000 to support our COVID19 Emergency Initiatives in Houston, Dallas, Austin, NYC, Washington, D.C., and SWFL! A big thanks to the Produce Marketing Association for their unwavering support of Brighter Bites. Our hearts are full. ...

Happy Saturday, all!
Thank you to everyone who logged on last night and helped us kick off night one of Brighter Bites Wine for a Cause. The bidding has begun, and we're already 36% towards our total goal of $150,000 — with three more days to go! We’re excited to keep the fun going the rest of the weekend! If you haven’t already registered, the auction registration link is in our bio!
#wineforacause #wine #freshproduce
...

Tonight we are proud to feature another one of our amazing donors, Silver Oak Cellars. Silver Oak began over a handshake between two friends with a bold vision: focus on one varietal, Cabernet Sauvignon, aged exclusively in American oak and worthy of cellaring for decades to come.⠀

Today, Silver Oak farms more than 400 acres of vines in Napa Valley and Alexander Valley with a leading-edge approach toward farming and viticulture, and the softest possible impact on natural resources and the environment. Silver Oak has been cited as one of a dozen California wineries which "have reached cult status" for its Cabernet Sauvignon production, and occupies an important niche in California's wine industry.⠀

In 2016, ten years after a fire destroyed their historic Oakville winery, Silver Oak's new Oakville winery became the first commercial winery in the world to earn the U.S. Green Building Council's LEED Platinum Certification for efficient energy use. ⠀

You can bid on several Silver Oak vintages in less than 48 hours! Registration link in bio.
...

Wine for a Cause wouldn't be possible without the generous support of our incredible donors! From now until the silent auction goes live Friday at 5:00 PM ET (REGISTRATION LINK IN BIO), we're going to be featuring a few of the vintners and oenophiles whose support has been critical in making our virtual event a success -- starting with Gargiulo Vineyards.⠀

Since their first commercial release in 2000, Gargiulo Vineyards has quietly taken its place among the most highly regarded Cabernet Sauvignon producers in Napa Valley. Jeff Gargiulo and his wife, Valerie, founded their establishment in the early nineties after more than a decade prior of inspiration and coaching from Valerie’s cousins, who were esteemed Napa winemakers. Over the years they pursued their quest to create incredible wine from their now two vineyard locations in Oakville–a hands-on operation that consists of Jeff, Valerie, daughter April, and son-in-law Mitch. ⠀

You will find Gargiulo Vineyards' 2016 Oakville Sessions Cab, 2016 G Major 7 Study Cab, and their 2017 Money Road Ranch Cab featured in our auction inventory, as well as a Gargiulo Vineyard Tasting for six people! Thank you, Jeff and Valerie!
...

The Brighter Bites Fundraiser Wine for a Cause, co-hosted by Produce Marketing Association (PMA), is quickly approaching! Registration is fast and free. Download the Givi app and you're all set to participate. ⠀

From Scarecrow Wine and Screaming Eagle Winery Cabernet Sauvignon, to Dominus Winery and Joseph Phelps Vineyards Insignia, we have procured bottles and cases from some of the finest wine collections in the world that will be available for bidding starting Friday, May 22nd at 5:00 PM ET. One hundred percent of proceeds will benefit Brighter Bites and our COVID-19 relief initiatives.
...

Parents and care givers - are you looking for ways to talk about COVID-19 with your kids? We've got you covered with these infographics from the @covid19literacy. For more great fact sheets, For more great resources, go to http://brighterbites.org/family-resources. ...

YardPeeps has made these amazing signs to honor frontline and essential workers who are making our community run while others shelter at home! Proceeds benefit Brighter Bites programs nationwide!⠀

YardPeeps has sold more than 900 signs already to people living in 23 different states and Washington, D.C.!⠀

They are $20 each! Order on http://Yardpeeps.com. Thank you!!
...

Join Brighter Bites for Wine for a Cause, a virtual silent auction on Memorial Day Weekend, May 22-25, 2020, to raise funds that will help provide fresh fruits and vegetables for tens of thousands of food insecure households nationwide that have been hit hardest by COVID-19. Registration link in bio and here: https://secure.qgiv.com/event/brighterbites/ ...

We ❤️ our volunteers! “We took this picture on our first day at RCMA Immokalee Community School in Southwest Florida. Parents, custodians, the principal, the school counselor, the Director of National School Lunch Programs, and countless others came to help that day. In this picture, you see Patti Young, the Director of National School Lunch Programs. She has been a consistent presence from the very beginning, helping us in more ways than we can count, like so many others. We are grateful to all our volunteers from RCMA. Thank you for supporting us, and we can't wait to see you all again!” 🍊🍅🍓
-Rosmery Garcia, Program Coordinator in Southwest Florida
@brighterbites_swfl
#throwbackthursday #volunteerappreciation #brighterbites
...

At Brighter Bites distributions in Houston, we are part of an incredible partnership with the Houston Food Bank and the YMCA-Greater Houston Area. Now we are honored to have the support of the National Guard, which is assisting the food bank and its food distribution partners for 45 days. We are honored to work with such selfless men and women to help feed our families in the Houston community! ...

Donate to the Brighter Bites Covid-19 Emergency Response efforts to ensure families nationwide can access fresh, immune-boosting fruits and vegetables during these challenging times. http://www.brighterbites.org. ...

The Brighter Bites-H-E-B produce voucher initiative is up and running in Austin and Houston! Our famlies are using them to buy the produce they have enjoyed from participating in the Brighter Bites program. We even got a sneak peek at what they are buying! Top picks are mangoes, limes, bananas, cucumbers, avocados, corn, pepers, and tomatoes. #eathealthy #immunebooster #covid19 #Austin #Houston #joyoffresh ...