By Brenda Hannah
The Mid-South 4-H Food Pantry was sponsored by the Southern Cotton Ginners Association. The event was open to youth in grades 6-12 and was held on Saturday, February 25, 2023, at the Renasant Convention Center in Memphis, Tennessee.
The competition was a one-day free event for 4-H members from Arkansas, Tennessee, Missouri, Louisiana, and Mississippi to compete in a food challenge at the Mid-South Farm and Gin Show to demonstrate their knowledge and skills to prepare a healthy meal with items commonly found in a local food pantry. The contest emphasized limited food waste, food efficiency, and the healthiness of a meal.
Each team was provided a mystery ingredient that had to be incorporated into the recipe and this year’s mystery ingredient was a flour tortilla. The winning team’s recipe “Mexican Chicken Tortilla” and the cost of the recipe are available to the public. Teams were required to bring their own cooking equipment but the association covered all the cooking ingredients. There was a monetary award for first, second, and third-place winning teams.
Tennessee had four teams participating and the Moore County team “Blazing Cookers” placed third overall with eleven teams in the competition. They brought home $100 in prize money. This team consisted of Jenny Sanders, Macy Sanders, Reason Brown, and Emily Burks with Brenda Hannah, UT-TSU Moore County FCS Extension agent, as the coach.