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Walmart and James Beard Foundation Support Local Farms

Walmart is teaming up with the James Beard Foundation to support local farms in an exciting culinary initiative called “Rediscovering America.” The program features five Best Chef Award semifinalists selected by the James Beard Foundation, paired with five farms across the U.S. that supply produce to Walmart. The goal is to emphasize the importance of fresh, affordable, and locally grown produce, contributing to the farm-to-table movement.

With a global commitment to making a positive impact, Walmart utilizes its size and scale to benefit customers, associates, suppliers, and communities worldwide. This partnership aims to support local farmers and champion the significance of farm-fresh, locally sourced ingredients.

Best Chef Award Semifinalists

As part of the initiative, each Best Chef Award semifinalist will be featured in an upcoming documentary series produced by FactoryMade, known for their work on the El Rey Network and Lucha Underground.

“Rediscovering America” showcases a range of restaurants across the United States, from casual to formal, where chefs incorporate locally grown produce, available at Walmart, into their expertly crafted signature menu selections. This program not only promotes the farm-to-table movement but also celebrates the culinary diversity found in communities nationwide.

Support Local Farms -Walmart and James Beard Foundation article image

Support Local Farms | Photo Credit: James Beard Foundation – waste not book cover

This Rediscovering America | James Beard Foundation and Walmart Support Local Farms post is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Walmart®. The opinions and text are all mine.

Walmart and James Beard Foundation Support Local Farms image - Masterpiece

L to R: Spicy Onion Dry Pot Chicken, Kung Pao Chicken, Spicy Onion Dry Pot Beef

Chef Rui Liu

Atlanta's very own Chef Rui Liu has snagged a spot as one of the five Best Chef Award Southeast semifinalists chosen by the James Beard Foundation for the “Rediscovering America” program. If you haven't experienced his culinary magic, Chef Rui is the talented owner and chef behind the renowned Masterpiece, a Sichuan restaurant located in Duluth, GA.

For this exciting culinary venture, Chef Rui has handpicked Vidalia onions from his local Walmart to be the star ingredient in his feature dishes. These sweet Vidalia onions are sourced from Bland Farms in Glennville, GA, and are now making their way to the shelves of your neighborhood Walmart. It's a celebration of local flavors and a testament to the amazing culinary talent we have right here in Atlanta!

Spicy Onion Dry Pot Chicken at Masterpiece. Can't you almost smell the flavorful aroma from your screen?


I stopped in for lunch at Masterpiece and was not disappointed. We ordered the Spicy Onion Dry Pot Chicken, Kung Pao Chicken, and the Spicy Onion Dry Pot Beef dishes.  Each dish was bursting with flavor. I have been to China a few times and have traveled around the world. But, I have never had Sichuan that tasted like this.  Each dish had its own unique flavor vs. the traditional way the Sichuan dishes are typically prepared.  I will definitely return to Masterpiece to taste more of their menu items.

Chicken Soup with Kale

The Vidalia onions from Bland Farms at Walmart left such a delicious impression on me that I couldn't resist creating a dish of my own with these fantastic vegetables.

Introducing my latest creation: Chicken Soup with Kale! This hearty and wholesome soup is a year-round favorite for me, and it's especially comforting when the weather turns chilly.

Walmart and James Beard Foundation Support Local Farms - Chicken Soup with Kale

Chicken Soup with Kale Recipe


  • 1 medium chopped Vidalia onion (found in the produce aisle at your local Walmart).
  • 3 tablespoons of Extra Virgin olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 celery ribs, chopped
  • 2 medium carrots, chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 2 cartons (32 ounces each) of reduced-sodium chicken broth
  • 4 cups chopped fresh kale
  • 2 cups shredded cooked chicken
  • 2 tablespoons of Better than Bouillon Chicken Base
  • 1/4 cup of Pine Nuts (optional)

James Beard Foundation and Walmart support local farms.


  1. In a Dutch oven, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add Vidalia onion, celery, and carrots; cook and stir 8-10 minutes or until vegetables are crisp-tender. Add garlic; cook 1 minute longer.
  2. Gradually stir in broth. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer, covered, 10 minutes.
  3. Return to a boil and stir in kale, chicken, and Better Than Bouillon Chicken base; cook, covered, 6-8 minutes longer, or until kale is tender.
  4. Add pine nuts and let sit for 10-15 minutes and then serve.

Chicken Soup with Kale

Chicken Soup with Kale Recipe PinSupport Your Local Farms!

James Beard Foundation and Walmart support local farms - Bland Farms

Headquartered in Glennville, Georgia, Bland Farms is the largest grower, packer, and shipper of sweet onions in the United States. Bland Farms represents roughly one-quarter of the entire Vidalia® sweet onion volume and has the largest controlled-environment storage capacity in the industry. Bland Farms was the first company in the industry to market sweet onions year-round. In order to meet the needs of customers, year-round Bland Farms had to expand growing operations beyond the borders of Georgia, across the United States, and internationally. Our strategically located operations result in the highest quality, freshest, and sweetest onions available to consumers and retailers today.

About the James Beard Foundation

The James Beard Foundation’s mission is to celebrate, nurture, and honor chefs and other leaders making America's food culture more delicious, diverse, and sustainable for everyone. 

A cookbook author and teacher with an encyclopedic knowledge about food, the late James Beard was a champion of American cuisine. He helped educate and mentor generations of professional chefs and food enthusiasts, instilling in them the value of wholesome, healthful, and delicious food. Today JBF continues in the same spirit by administering a number of diverse programs that include educational initiatives, food industry awards, scholarships for culinary students, publications, chef advocacy training, and thought-leader convening. The Foundation also maintains the historic James Beard House in New York City’s Greenwich Village as a “performance space” for visiting chefs. Get food news, recipes, and more at the James Beard Foundation’s blog, or subscribe to the free digital newsletter, Beard Bites

The James Beard Foundation is a national not-for-profit 501(c)(3) organization based in New York City.

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This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Walmart. The opinions and text are all mine.

We hope that you loved this “Rediscovering America | James Beard Foundation and Walmart Support Local Farms” post.


Walmart and James Beard Pin - Chicken Soup with Kale




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