Former First Lady Michelle Obama Announces $1 Million Commitment from PLEZi Nutrition to FoodCorps’ Nourishing Futures Initiative


Former First Lady Michelle Obama Announces $1 Million Commitment from PLEZi Nutrition to FoodCorps’ Nourishing Futures Initiative

New Partnership and Funding Supports Major Growth in Commitment to Ensure Equitable Access to Food Education and Free School Meals for all 50 Million Students by 2030

NEW YORK CITY (May 3, 2023) FoodCorps, a national nonprofit that partners with schools and communities to nourish children’s health, education, and sense of belonging, today announced a new partnership with PLEZi Nutrition, which has committed $1 million in support of the Nourishing Futures initiative, a $250 million goal by FoodCorps that seeks to ensure all 50 million students in the United States learn about food and have access to nourishing, free meals in school by 2030.

First Lady Michelle Obama joins FoodCorps leaders and local students for the spring garden planting in the White House Kitchen Garden, April 2, 2014. (Official White House Photo by Amanda Lucidon.)

PLEZi Nutrition is a new Public Benefit Company on a mission to create higher standards for how the U.S. makes and markets food and beverages for kids, leading with nutrition, taste, and truth. The partnership, announced by former First Lady Michelle Obama at The Wall Street Journal Future of Everything Festival, leverages FoodCorps’ and PLEZi Nutrition’s shared values of putting kids first, building connections to nourishing food, ensuring accessibility, and driving positive change and impact for children everywhere. The announcement cements FoodCorps as PLEZi Nutrition’s inaugural philanthropic partner, alongside PLEZi’s new Kitchen Cabinet of advisors who will guide and advise the company’s educational efforts, as well as marketing approaches and product development.

“We are thrilled to partner with PLEZi Nutrition and Michelle Obama and are grateful for their generous support of our work advancing justice for kids through the power of food,” said Curt Ellis, Co-Founder and CEO of FoodCorps. “Through partnerships like this, we can help drive all 50 million students in this country toward a future where their basic nutritional needs are met, the food they’re eating reflects their cultures and identities, and what they learn about food builds positive attitudes, fosters their self-esteem, and helps them lead successful lives for years to come.”

First Lady Michelle Obama, in support of “Let’s Move!” visits Burroughs Elementary School in Washington, D.C., Feb. 25, 2016. (Official White House Photo by Chuck Kennedy.)

“We are honored to support FoodCorps’ visionary Nourishing Futures initiative and its goal of ensuring that all 50 million students learn about food and have access to nourishing, free meals in school by 2030,” said Leah Dunmore, PLEZi Nutrition CEO. “FoodCorps’ proven commitment to uplifting children through nourishing food in schools speaks to the heart of PLEZi’s mission to help raise a healthier generation of kids. We look forward to seeing the fruits of our partnership and together creating positive food futures for all children.” 

The Nourishing Futures initiative, first announced at the historic White House Conference on Hunger, Nutrition and Health in September 2022, will accomplish its goal by:

  • Partnering with schools and districts to advance their goals for food education and school nutrition, expanding FoodCorps programming to reach 500,000 students a year;
  • Preparing 1,000 BIMPOC emerging leaders for mission-driven careers in the fields of food education and school nutrition; and
  • Mobilizing 1 million supporters for policies that expand free school meals; fund food educators; update garden, kitchen, and cafeteria infrastructure; strengthen local supply chains; and support the food education and school nutrition workforce. 

Philanthropic supporters of FoodCorps’ Nourishing Futures to date include Inclusive Capital Partners Foundation; Humana Foundation; The Joyce & Irving Goldman Family Foundation; MacKenzie Scott; Mars Food; The Massachusetts Health Foundation; Melissa Williams; Newman’s Own Foundation; Olo, through the Olo for Good Fund at Tides Foundation; Orgain Clean Nutrition; PLEZi; The Rachael Ray Foundation; Sodexo Stop Hunger Foundation; Susan and David Tunnell; Thrive Market; Walmart Foundation; W.K. Kellogg Foundation; and The William K. Bowes, Jr. Foundation.

Visit to become one of the 1 million supporters for Nourishing Futures and help FoodCorps ensure that all 50 million students have access to free and nourishing meals and food education.

About FoodCorps 

FoodCorps partners with schools and communities to nourish children’s health, education, and sense of belonging so that every child, in every school, experiences the joy and power of food. Our AmeriCorps members serve alongside educators and school nutrition leaders to provide children with nourishing meals, food education, and culturally affirming experiences with food that celebrate and nurture the whole child. Building on this direct service, FoodCorps advocates for policy change, grows networks, and develops leaders in service of every child’s health and well-being. Our goal is that by 2030, every child will have access to food education and nourishing food in school. 

To learn more about FoodCorps’ work across the country, visit or follow @foodcorps on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

About PLEZi Nutrition

PLEZi Nutrition is a new kids’ nutrition company, created to bring higher standards to how we make and market food and beverages for our kids. We are the motivated voices of parents everywhere looking for more practical, healthier options. The first product is a kids’ drink called PLEZi with no added sugar and 75% less sugar than average leading 100% fruit juices. The U.S. is in a nutrition-related health crisis and sugary drinks are the leading source of added sugar: nearly two-thirds of youth consume sugary drinks on a given day. PLEZi also contains fiber and nutrients to support kids’ growing bodies. PLEZi the product, the platform, and the philanthropic efforts are here to help raise a healthier generation of kids and have some fun along the way. PLEZi Nutrition is part of Juggernaut Capital’s portfolio of companies. For more information, visit and follow PLEZi Nutrition on Instagram.