Panera Bread honors National Breast Cancer Awareness Month with Pink Ribbon Bagels Benefiting UAMS Cancer Institute

By Susan Van Dusen

Pink Ribbon Bagels are Panera’s signature fundraising bagels, developed by Sue Stees, a 26-year breast cancer survivor. Stees developed the Pink Ribbon Bagel in 2001 as a way to help support breast cancer causes. Soon Panera Bread Corporate adopted the idea and now the Pink Ribbon Bagel is sold nationwide.  

“This undertaking tickles us pink,” said Stees, co-owner of Traditional Bakery Inc. dba Panera Bread, which has bakery cafes in Tulsa, southwest Missouri, and northwest Arkansas.

Panera market relations manager, Claudine Stark, said the decision to partner with UAMS was an easy one. “They’re passionate about their mission and helping people.”

“We are honored to partner with Panera Bread again this year for the Pink Ribbon Bagel Celebration. Proceeds from this program will benefit our patient-care programs and our research into innovative prevention and treatment for breast cancer,” said Peter Emanuel, M.D., director of the UAMS Winthrop P. Rockefeller Cancer Institute.

Panera Bread will host a “Go Pink” kickoff celebration in each of its Central Arkansas locations Oct. 1. On that day, 100 percent of each Pink Ribbon Bagel purchase will be donated to the UAMS Breast Cancer Program. Through the remainder of October, 25 cents of each purchase of a Pink Ribbon Bagel will be donated to the program.  

The Pink Ribbon Bagel is twisted in the shape of a ribbon and features cherry chips, dried cherries and cranberries, vanilla honey and brown sugar and is baked fresh daily. Preordering is available.  

The Cancer Institute, which opened a 12-story expansion in August 2010, is Arkansas’ only academic cancer research center. Patients travel from all Arkansas counties, all 50 states and more than 40 foreign countries to receive treatment at the Cancer Institute, which records more than 120,000 patient visits per year.