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SL Green recruits celebrity chef to feed COVID heroes

SL Green has kicked in $1 million and recruited celebrity Chef Daniel Boulud for a program that will deliver meals to first responders, the elderly and food insecure families

Manhattan’s biggest office landlord has formed the non profit Food1st to deliver meals daily to front-line, first responders and medical personnel, elderly New Yorkers and food insecure families.

Food1st will also help by re-activating shuttered restaurant kitchens to serve the program.

Chef Daniel Boulud

SL Green has contributed $1 million as a down-payment to the independent organization in the hope that other companies, organizations and individuals will join the effort to address this crisis.

The initiative will work in partnership with Chef Boulud, who will open a new restaurant at SL Green’s One Vanderbilt later this year, and add other restaurants and non-profit organizations to ensure the widest possible preparation and distribution of food.

The effort launched this week at Boulud’s downtown prep kitchen and is initially providing up to 1,600 meals per day to New York City’s frontline medical workers as the City continues to battle COVID-19.

A second phase, scheduled for next week, will include additional SL Green tenants and partners to reach New York’s most food insecure populations.

In turn, this will re-activate the kitchens of some of SL Green’s food and beverage tenants, with the goal of preparing and delivering more than 150,000 meals funded by SL Green’s initial grant.

Heightened safety precautions and protocols will be in place at all participating kitchens to ensure the health of all involved.

“The vision for Food1st is to partner with our tenants — beginning with the great, Chef Daniel Boulud — to provide meals to those who need them, safely bring food workers a paycheck and restore vitality and energy to the City we love,” said Marc Holliday, SL Green Chairman and Chief Executive Officer.

“By establishing and seeding the Food1st non-profit, we hope others will join us in the fight to alleviate the food shortage in New York City caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.”

“COVID-19 is a challenge unlike anything we’ve ever faced,” said Chef Daniel Boulud.

“The restaurant industry has been hit particularly hard, but we still have the facilities, ability and desire to safely provide quality, nourishing meals to essential workers and those most in need.

“We’re looking forward to making a positive contribution and we appreciate having the opportunity to partner with SL Green to make this program possible.”

Anyone interested in supporting or partnering with Food1st can reach SL Green Senior Vice President Laura Vulaj at laura.vulaj@slgreen.com.

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