Organic Valley to Donate Milk in a Time of Great Need to More Than 28,000 in Wisconsin
Organic Valley Family of Farms, the nation's largest cooperative of organic farmers, will donate 1,200 cases of its 8-ounce single serve organic milk to Second Harvest Foodbank of Southern Wisconsin today. The donation will feed more than 28,000 at-risk people in southwestern Wisconsin. Second Harvest acquires and distributes food to more than 400 charitable food programs working to end hunger at the neighborhood and community levels in 16 southwestern Wisconsin counties.
Of the 28,800 single serve milks, 10,000 will go to Second Harvest's BackPack Program in Tomah and Evansville. Since 2005, Second Harvest has grown the BackPack Program with partner agencies in rural, underserved cities of Evansville, Elroy and Tomah, and is also looking to start a BackPack Program in Janesville. Backpacks filled with nutritious, easy-to-prepare foods provide nourishment on long weekends and other out-of-school times for children considered at risk for hunger. In conjunction with a school district and a community agency that acquires food through Second Harvest Foodbank, backpacks are filled with food and teachers discretely hang them in children's lockers to be taken home on the last school day before the break. The children return the empty backpacks on the next day back to school.
The Organic Valley milk will also be distributed to several of Second Harvest Foodbank's partner agencies, such as food pantries.
"Food banks are challenged this holiday season to keep up with the increased demand because of the struggling economy," said Jamie Johnson, public affairs manager for Organic Valley. "Organic Valley is honored to help Second Harvest Foodbank of Southern Wisconsin in a small way by supplying organic milk, which is produced locally without the use of antibiotics, synthetic pesticides and hormones, making it healthier for Wisconsin's growing children."
"As the demand for food assistance has increased, Second Harvest Foodbank is charged with continuing to provide nutritious foods for the tables of families facing hunger," said Dan Stein, President/CEO for Second Harvest Foodbank of Southern Wisconsin. "This donation of milk from Organic Valley will help meet this need."
Organic Valley Family of Farms: Independent and Farmer-Owned
Organic Valley is America’s largest cooperative of organic farmers and is one of the nation’s leading organic brands. Organized in 1988, it represents 1,398 farmers in 33 states and one Canadian province, and achieved $527.8 million in 2008 sales. Focused on its founding mission of saving family farms through organic farming, Organic Valley produces a variety of organic foods, including organic milk, soy, cheese, butter, spreads, creams, eggs, produce and juice, which are sold in supermarkets, natural foods stores and food cooperatives nationwide. The same farmers who produce for Organic Valley also produce a full range of delicious organic meat under the Organic Prairie Family of Farms label. For further information, call 1-888-444-MILK or visit www.organicvalley.coop, www.organicprairie.coop and the cooperative’s farmer website, www.farmers.coop. Organic Valley is also on Twitter @Organic_Valley, and Facebook www.facebook.com/OrganicValley.
Second Harvest Foodbank of Southern Wisconsin
Second Harvest Foodbank of Southern Wisconsin is a nonprofit organization dedicated to ending hunger in southwestern Wisconsin, where more than 100,000 people—40 percent who are children—don’t always have enough to eat. Through food and financial donations, Second Harvest acquires and distributes food to more than 400 programs, including food pantries, shelters and meal sites, in 16 counties. From July 1, 2008 to June 30, 2009, Second Harvest Foodbank distributed more than 6.8 million pounds of food. It is one of 200 affiliates of Feeding America, the nation’s largest charitable hunger-relief organization, engaging our country in the fight to end hunger. For more information, visit www.secondharvestmadison.org.