‘Vanilla’ provides 421K meals to Second Harvest

In just 18 months, Farragut High School sophomore William Cabaniss’ selfless generosity and unique talent for making vanilla extract has provided close to half a million meals for hungry East Tennesseans.

The “Vanilla Feeds Tomorrow” non-profit he began in his Farragut home in May 2020 so far has contributed $140,405 to Second Harvest Food Bank of East Tennessee, which organizers say is the equivalent of 421,215 meals.

Cabaniss, who is the son of Mark and Jillina Cabaniss, has made several separate donations to Second Harvest, most recently one for $40,000 Thursday, Dec. 20.

Grateful for his ongoing contributions, on that same day, Second Harvest placed the Vanilla Feeds Tomorrow logo in its volunteer lobby and began selling the extract there as well.


“Second Harvest is beyond excited about the opportunity to sell homemade bottles of vanilla extract from Vanilla Feeds Tomorrow,” said Rachael Ellis, the organization’s director of Development. “The vanilla extract is high quality and made with compassion. William inspires everyone he encounters, and he reminds us daily of the enormous impact that that one person can make.

 “The opportunity to work with someone like William who has a genuine passion to help the community is a dream come true. He works tirelessly before and after high school to help us fight hunger and feed hope,” she added.

“I’m so happy with how much Vanilla Feeds Tomorrow’ has grown in such a short time,” said Cabaniss, who continues making weekly batches of the extract in his home to sell both online and now at Second Harvest.

“The community has generously supported Vanilla Feeds Tomorrow,” he added. “I am thankful that I have been able to make a difference in the fight against hunger. I’m looking forward to seeing the impact Vanilla Feeds Tomorrow will continue to make in East Tennessee.”

For more information, visit www.vanillafeedstomorrow.com.