Chef Michael Smith encourages consumers to eat healthier with the new Half Your Plate Instructional Cooking Series

OTTAWA, May 26, 2016 /CNW/ - Half Your Plate is proud to launch a new series of instructional cooking videos geared at educating consumers on how to select, store and prepare popular vegetables. Each video features a unique recipe created by Chef Michael Smith and shows the basics of preparing produce. The video series features tomatoes, potatoes, celery, cucumbers, creamer potatoes, butternut squash, brussels sprouts, and mushrooms. Five videos have been launched today, with the remaining five to launch in the fall of 2016.

"I'm passionate about teaching simple cooking methods that can dramatically amp up your food lifestyle. Our Half Your Plate videos prove that healthy cooking is not hard cooking," said Chef Smith. "Eating lots of fruits and vegetables everyday remains one of the single most powerful lifestyle choices you can make!"

The Half Your Plate program is managed by the Canadian Produce Marketing Association (CPMA) in partnership with the Canadian Cancer Society, Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada, and Canadian Public Health Association. A simple message, Half Your Plate encourages Canadians to make healthier meal choices without measuring, one meal at a time. The interactive Half Your Plate website is a one-stop-shop for recipes, print resources, and videos all about fruits and vegetables.

"One of the major barriers to healthy eating is a lack of proper food skills," stated Rick Alcocer, Chair of the CPMA Marketing Committee and Senior VP of Fresh Sales for Duda Farm Fresh Foods. "An essential step to developing food skills, quick educational videos are the perfect way to give Canadians the confidence to try new meals in the kitchen and live a healthier life."

The following videos are available today at

Half Your Plate with Chef Michael Smith: The Produce Section
Half Your Plate with Chef Michael Smith: Celery Potato Salad
Half Your Plate with Chef Michael Smith: Quick Cucumber Pickles
Half Your Plate with Chef Michael Smith: Red & Yellow Potato Hash
Half Your Plate with Chef Michael Smith: Your Favourite Pasta with Roast Tomato Sauce

Half Your Plate will also be hosting a Twitter Party to kick off the series tonight at 9pm ET with Chef Smith and Food Bloggers of Canada and prizing courtesy of Breville Canada. More information is available at

CPMA would also like to thank their sponsors for making these videos possible: BCfresh, Duda Farm Fresh Foods, Highline Mushrooms, the Little Potato Company, Ontario Greenhouse Vegetable Growers, RedSun Farms, and the United Potato Growers of Canada and Canadian Horticultural Council.


SOURCE Canadian Produce Marketing Association

Video with caption: "You haven’t lived until you’ve slow roasted a tomato. This simple method unlocks the deepest possible flavour from just about any tomato. A long slow roast surrounded by lots of aromatic flavours easily melts whole baby tomatoes into a tasty sauce for your favourite pasta that more than fills Half Your Plate!". Video available at:

For further information: Vanessa Sherry, Manager, Communications, Canadian Produce Marketing Association, Tel: 613-226-4187 x225 | Cell: 613-878-3312, Email:


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