With Jamie Oliver Gone, So Is Huntington, West Virginia’s Corporate Sponsorship


Remember Huntington, West Virginia, the town that Jamie Oliver visited last year in the hopes of teaching its overweight residents how to cook real food? Neither does the U.S. Foodservice.

The Atlantic Food Channel reports that the corporation, which is one of the country’s biggest — and most profitable — food distributors, has pulled what remains of the $25,000 in funding it pledged to Huntington’s Kitchen, the school that Oliver founded when he came to “America’s fattest city” to film Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution last year.

Although the company’s executives initially paid plenty of lip service to the importance of “the health and success” of the community, they pulled their financial support — which was supposed to last a year — for the kitchen after eight months, taking with them the $5,000 still left in the budget. Oliver himself no longer has a financial stake in the kitchen, which in October received a $50,000 donation from a local hospital so that it could stay open for another year. Meanwhile, U.S. Foodservice, which pulls in $19 billion a year, shrugged its shoulders and blamed its marketing department budget for the cuts in funding.


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