Wednesday, 6 July 2011

Dean Foods Foundation supports FFA in 2011 with $100,000 grant

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Wednesday, 6 July 2011

INDIANAPOLIS (Wednesday, July 6, 2011/National FFA Foundation) – The nation’s largest milk and dairy products producer and distributor will support the National FFA Organization in 2011 with a $100,000 sponsorship to help develop students’ dairy-related skills and knowledge of the industry.

Dean Foods Foundation will support two national career development competitions focused on dairy cattle evaluation and dairy foods career exploration. The company will also fund an FFA grant program that will provide resources to FFA members with financial needs to help them successfully complete FFA-required supervised agricultural experiences. Dean Foods Foundation will also sponsor an FFA scholarship program designed to support collegiate students in pursuit of careers in the agriculture industry.

“Dean Foods Foundation believes in supporting local communities and their people by supporting organizations that, among other things, promote responsible agriculture,” said Robert K. Cooper, executive director of the National FFA Foundation. “Its support of FFA will help us engage thousands of students as they develop skills and knowledge in the areas of dairy cattle evaluation and dairy foods production.”

As an FFA sponsor, Dean Foods Foundation will share its knowledge of the dairy industry, food science, animal welfare and responsible agriculture and engage FFA members and advisors at the local, regional and national levels.

“We are proud to support FFA in encouraging tomorrow’s leaders in dairy, agriculture and food processing,” said Evan Kinser, senior director of milk supply at Dean Foods. “This grant allows us to share our resources, knowledge and expertise to help students contribute to the future of the dairy, food and agriculture industries.”

Dean Foods continues its long-standing commitment to agriculture, procuring milk from 12,000 dairy farmers across the United States. The company works closely with farmers to reduce on-farm environmental impacts, seek improved dairy policies, and advocate for proper care of dairy cows. In addition, Dean Foods buy large quantities of soybeans, almonds, sugar and other agricultural products. The company partners with a number of organizations to nurture farming communities, which helps strengthen local economies, ensures a safe, healthful food supply and provides sustainable livelihoods for many U.S. farmers.

Dean Foods Foundation extends the company’s philanthropic efforts in the areas of childhood hunger prevention, nutrition education for at-risk youth, responsible agriculture and disaster response.

The National FFA Foundation builds partnerships with industry, education, government, other foundations and individuals to secure financial resources that fund FFA activities, recognize member achievements, develop student leaders and support the future of agriculture education. Nearly 82 percent of all funds received by the foundation support FFA and agricultural education opportunities.

Formerly known as Future Farmers of America, the National FFA Organization provides agricultural education to more than 523,000 student members in grades seven through 12 who belong to one of 7,487 local FFA chapters throughout the U.S., Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands. The organization operates under a federal charter granted by the 81st U.S. Congress and it is an integral part of public instruction in agriculture. For more, visit http://www.ffa.org.

About National FFA Foundation
The National FFA Foundation builds partnerships with industry, education, government, other foundations and individuals to secure financial resources that fund FFA activities, recognize member achievements, develop student leaders and support the future of agriculture education. Governed by a 19-member board of trustees comprised of educators, business leaders, individual donors and FFA alumni, the foundation is a separately-registered nonprofit organization. About 82 percent of all sponsorship dollars received by the foundation support FFA members and agricultural education opportunities. For more, visit the National FFA Foundation at http://www.ffa.org/donate.

About National FFA Organization
The National FFA Organization, formerly known as Future Farmers of America, is a national youth organization of 523,309 student members as part of 7,487 local FFA chapters in all 50 states, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands. The FFA mission is to make a positive difference in the lives of students by developing their potential for premier leadership, personal growth and career success through agricultural education. The National FFA Organization operates under a federal charter granted by the 81st United States Congress and it is an integral part of public instruction in agriculture. The U.S. Department of Education provides leadership and helps set direction for FFA as a service to state and local agricultural education programs. For more, visit the National FFA Organization online (http://www.ffa.org), on Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/nationalffa), on Twitter (http://twitter.com/nationalffa) and FFA Nation (http://ffanation.ffa.org).

About Dean Foods Foundation
The Dean Foods Foundation supports organizations and programs that ensure children in our communities have access to the healthy foods they need to grow and thrive, and that enhance their understanding of the importance of a balanced, nutritious diet – now and throughout their lives. Understanding that the provision of fresh, nutritious food begins on the farm, we support programs and organizations that promote responsible agricultural practices and the future of farming through agricultural education. The Dean Foods Foundation also supports disaster response and relief efforts in times of crisis primarily in the communities where we do business. For more information, visit www.deanfoods.com.

About Dean Foods
Dean Foods is one of the leading food and beverage companies in the United States and a European leader in branded soy foods and beverages. The company’s Fresh Dairy Direct-Morningstar segment is the largest U.S. processor and distributor of milk, creamer and cultured dairy products. These offerings are marketed under more than 50 local and regional dairy brands, as well as through private labels. The WhiteWave-Alpro segment produces and sells an array of branded dairy, soy and plant-based beverages and foods. WhiteWave brands, including Silk® soy, almond and coconut milk, Horizon Organic® milk and dairy products, International Delight® coffee creamers and LAND O LAKES® creamers, are category leaders and consumer favorites. Alpro is the pan-European leader in branded soy food products. For more, visit www.deanfoods.com.

CONTACTS

Duane Brodt

Marketing and Communications

National FFA Organization
Dbrodt@ffa.org
317-802-4351

Liliana Esposito
Corporate Communications
Dean Foods Company
Liliana_esposito@deanfoods.com
214-721-7730

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