Dean Foods business units – Fresh Dairy Direct, Morningstar and WhiteWave – generated nearly 40 million pounds of product donations in less than four years
DALLAS, Nov. 28, 2011 /PRNewswire via COMTEX/ — At a time of year when hunger is in the spotlight, Dean Foods (NYSE: DF), a leading provider of wholesome, nutritious dairy products in the United States, is proud to be recognized for its efforts to fight hunger by being named a national Mission Partner by Feeding America. Since 2008, Dallas-based Dean Foods donated nearly 40 million pounds of food and dairy products, hundreds of thousands of dollars and countless hours of volunteerism to fight hunger in communities with Dean Foods operations.
The company’s Fresh Dairy Direct–Morningstar segment is the largest U.S. processor and distributor of milk, creamers, and cultured dairy products marketed under more than 50 local and regional dairy brands, as well as through private labels. The WhiteWave segment produces and sells an array of branded dairy, soy and plant-based beverages and foods, including Silk® soy, almond and coconut milk, Horizon Organic® milk and dairy products, International Delight® coffee creamers, and LAND O LAKES® creamers.
Feeding America is the nation’s leading domestic hunger-relief charity with a nationwide network of member food banks.
According to Feeding America, in 2010 alone, Dean Foods donated more than 12 million pounds of food that served more than 20,000 charities throughout 32 states across the Feeding America network. Below are just a few of those stories.
Dean Foods Support in Local Communities
Community Food Share, Boulder, Colo.
“The impact WhiteWave has had on our ability to fulfill our mission is significant, real and lasting,” said James Baldwin, CEO, Community Food Share. For decades, WhiteWave has helped Community Food Share in its mission to ensure that the people of Boulder and Broomfield counties have access to nutritious food. This has included unique sponsorships, milk and other product donations, and a $250,000 grant to support a new warehouse, allowing the food bank to serve more people.
Each year, Colorado employees participate in the Community Food Share’s Compete to Beat Hunger Corporate Challenge. In 2011, 99.5 percent of WhiteWave’s Colorado-based employees donated to the Corporate Challenge, and with the company matching their donations dollar for dollar, raised enough money to provide more than 463,000 meals to local people in need.
Blaine McPeak, President of WhiteWave Foods, puts the efforts into perspective. “As a food company, focusing efforts on eliminating hunger is an obvious match with our mission and vision as a company. But more importantly, it’s the right fit in the hearts and minds of our employees.”
North Texas Food Bank, Dallas, Texas
Dean Foods and the Dean Foods Foundation have supported NTFB for more than 10 years, providing critical funds, product, volunteer support and board leadership. Last year alone, hundreds of employees from Dean Foods corporate offices and local dairy plants collected food or volunteered to help package more than 100,000 meals for hungry families in North Texas. Dean Foods underscores employees’ year-round dedication for the cause by regularly donating and discounting product to NTFB, helping deliver more than 6 million pounds of dairy products to hungry families over the years of the partnership. Chris Sliva, the company’s Chief Commercial Officer, is also a dedicated member of the NTFB board.
In addition, the Dean Foods Foundation has also pledged $300,000 over three years to NTFB programs that feed and provide nutrition education to at-risk children and youth. The grant is the largest corporate foundation pledge ever received by NTFB.
In 2011, Dean Foods partnered with Tetra Pak to donate 276,000 8-oz. single-serve cartons of shelf-stable milk to the Food 4 Kids backpack nutrition program, a value of more than $100,000. And during the World Series, Dean Foods donated $100 for each Texas Rangers home run and St. Louis Cardinals strikeout, generating $5,100 – or enough to provide 15,300 meals.
The Garelick Farms plant in Rensselaer, NY, has long supported the Regional Food Bank. Recently, the company committed itself to a structured donation program whereby processed milk is sent weekly to the Food Bank for distribution to member agencies. “Milk is a highly valued donation because of its nutritional value and role as a staple ingredient in balanced meals,” said Joanne Dwyer, Director of Food Industry Relations and Business Development Representative. “We truly appreciate Garelick Farms’ dedication to donating food and its financial support of the Food Bank.”
Garelick Farms in Massachusetts embraces its hometown food bank as well. The Greater Boston Food Bank supplies food for as many as 545,000 people throughout the 190 cities and towns in eastern Massachusetts. Garelick Farms Massachusetts operations provide milk for GBFB’s Kids Cafe Program, which provides nutritious meals to more than 1,700 children after school each day. In addition, Garelick Farms made a $50,000 contribution to GBFB’s capital campaign to help fund its recently completed state-of-the-art distribution center in Boston.
Second Harvest Heartland, St. Paul, Minn.
In 2010, Second Harvest Heartland created the Hunger Hero awards to recognize the scale of effort put forth by certain community partners. The Dean Foods plant in Woodbury, MN, was named the inaugural Hunger Hero in the Food Donor category for donating more than 900,000 pounds of milk that served approximately 1,000 food bank programs. Moreover, the company opted to forgo a holiday party and instead donated those funds to Second Harvest Heartland, delivering an additional 1,500 gallons of milk to families over the holiday season.
Meadow Gold Hawaii raised $3,600 and collected more than 1,000 pounds of food for the Hawaii Food Bank this year. Employees generously donated canned goods and made monetary contributions, but the highlight of the employee effort was the Dunk-A-Manager event where employees paid $1 for an attempt to dunk a manager of their choice. The food drive culminated with Meadow Gold drivers volunteering their time to pick up donated food from numerous post offices after the well-known Letter Carrier’s Food Drive and delivering it back to the Food Bank – more than 29,000 pounds of canned food. Meadow Gold drivers are already volunteering for next year’s campaign.
Country Fresh General Manager Kevin Begin is no stranger to the Feeding America West Michigan food bank, currently serving a three-year term as the president of the board. Combined, Country Fresh and WhiteWave are the food bank’s fourth largest donor, contributing over 1.13 million pounds of food in 2010. Recognizing the value of information and experience, Country Fresh hosted the Feeding America West Michigan distribution staff at the plant to share operational best practices, helping the food bank improve efficiencies.
South Plains Food Bank, Lubbock, Texas
Gandy’s Dairy in Lubbock supports the South Plains Food Bank in a variety of ways including sponsorship of the holiday ‘U Can Share’ food drive, subsidizing milk for the 21 after-school Kids Cafe feeding program locations, and volunteerism. No one has more experience with the latter than Kyle Rogers, Gandy’s Key Accounts Manager and immediate past president of the South Plains Food Bank board of directors. In fact, Kyle has been involved at the board level since 1995, and has volunteered with the food bank for more than two decades.
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, creamers, 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.
CONTACT: Corporate Communications, Jamaison Schuler, +1-214-721-7766; or Investor Relations, Barry Sievert, +1-214-303-3438
SOURCE: Dean Foods Company