Holland America Line donated much of the fresh fruit and produce from the Nieuw Amsterdam’s cancelled cruise to the Feeding South Florida food bank.
Feeding South Florida is the largest food bank serving Palm Beach, Broward, Miami-Dade, and Monroe Counties, distributing more than 50 million pounds ( that’s 42 million meals) of food annually to over 700,000 people – 240,190 of whom are children and 110,000 are older adults.
The ship donated 11 pallets of fruits and vegetables, and a Holland America vendor – Freedom Fresh – picked up the food from the ship and delivered it to Feeding South Florida. The ship’s Food and Beverage Director Ron van Vliet and Executive Chef Sinu Pillai, along with Holland America’s Vice President of Hotel and Food and Beverage Frits Van der Werff, selected all of the produce and got it all loaded onto the truck for delivery.
Feeding South Florida received a wide selection of inventory that had just been loaded for the cruise and would have gone unused. The organization accepted an abundance of vegetables including zucchini, tomatoes, lettuce, bell peppers, mushrooms, squash, kale, carrots, eggplant, cucumber and more. Fruits included starfruit, mango, dragon fruit, grapes, blackberries, raspberries, blueberries, bananas, kiwis, strawberries and avocado. Fresh herbs and spices also were delivered, including sage, tarragon, dill, thyme, rosemary and basil.
The Caribbean cruise from Ft. Lauderdale was cancelled due to problems with the ship’s thruster.