Celebrity Cook Paula Deen and Sons Jamie and Bobby Bring Smithfield Foods' Helping Hungry Homes Tour to New York
NEW YORK CITY, NY (January 25, 2008) — Food Bank For New York City today received more than 19,000 pounds of meat to help feed local families, thanks to Smithfield Foods' 10-city Helping Hungry HomesTM Across America tour, a hunger relief initiative led by celebrity cook Paula Deen.
The tour's goal is to provide one million servings of meat to the nation's hungry families, including those in New York City. Almost one in three children in New York City under the age of 18, or 28 percent, lives below the federal poverty level. That's more than 55 percent higher than the national average of 18 percent according to U.S. Census Bureau statistics.
Paula Deen's sons Jamie and Bobby, who regularly appear on her Food Network shows and have authored their own cookbook, helped the Food Bank staff unload a Smithfield Foods truck carrying more than 19,000 pounds of Smithfield®, Sunnyland® and Lykes® meat products, including lunch meat, smoked sausage and hot dogs. "We want to thank Smithfield Foods, Paula Deen, and her sons Jamie and Bobby for making it possible for thousands of New York City families to sit down to nutritious meals this week," said Lucy Cabrera, Ph.D., President and CEO of the Food Bank For New York City. "More than 1.3 million New Yorkers throughout the five boroughs depend on emergency food programs, an increase of 24 percent since 2004. This donation from Smithfield Foods really helps."
The Smithfield Foods Helping Hungry Homes tour began in Deen's hometown, Savannah, Ga., on January 14 and has reached Philadelphia and New York City. Additional scheduled stops include Atlanta, Kansas City, Los Angeles, Chicago, New Orleans and Washington, D.C., before concluding in Detroit. Donations are being distributed in each city through local members of America's Second Harvest, the nation's largest hunger-relief organization.
"We're delighted to be able to work with our partner Smithfield Foods and such an outstanding local organization as the Food Bank to help feed the city's hungry families," said Bobby Deen. "Our family feels particularly blessed and we want to do as much as we can to provide working families and their children in New York with proper, nutritious meals."
Smithfield Foods' Helping Hungry Homes initiative was established to help ensure that American families in need do not go hungry. Smithfield Foods and its independent operating companies have a long history of stocking food banks, supporting after-school nutrition programs and providing food relief in the wake of natural disasters. This 10-city tour alone will distribute 250,000 pounds of meat products with an estimated retail value of more than one million dollars.
"Although Smithfield Foods has long been a supporter of hunger relief initiatives, we felt the need to help shine a spotlight on an ever-increasing problem for American families," said Dennis Treacy, vice president of environmental and corporate affairs for Smithfield Foods.
"Providing hunger relief with Paula Deen and her family through our Helping Hungry Homes initiative will remain a high priority throughout our family of companies," Treacy added.
Food Bank For New York City is the major supplier of food for 1.3 million New Yorkers through its network of more than 1,000 emergency and community food programs throughout the five boroughs-including soup kitchens, food pantries, shelters, low-income daycare centers, Kids Cafes and senior, youth and rehabilitation centers. Those in need include women and children, the elderly, people with disabilities and the working poor. For every $1 donation, 97 cents goes toward food acquisition, distribution and programs. Charity Navigator-the nation's largest independent charity evaluator - gave the Food Bank For New York City its third consecutive highest four-star rating for excellence and efficiency in the successful management of organizational finances. In July 2007 FoodChange Inc. became a subsidiary of the Food Bank. For more information, go to www.foodbanknyc.org.
Smithfield Foods is a global food company with operations in 13 countries through wholly owned subsidiaries and joint ventures. Headquartered in Smithfield, Va., the company produces more than 50 brands of pork, beef and turkey products and more than 200 gourmet foods. Employing more than 57,000 people across the globe, Smithfield Foods is the world's largest producer and processor of pork and a leader in turkey processing, cattle feeding and beef processing.
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