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General Mills pledges $1 million to fight hunger in Minnesota


Partners join together for unprecedented statewide effort to alleviate hunger

MINNEAPOLIS, Minn. – General Mills joined corporations and community partners from across Minnesota today to launch Hunger-Free Minnesota, a three-year initiative with the goal of sustainably adding 100 million meals annually for hungry children and adults in the state. General Mills today pledged $1 million in financial support, which will be used to fund initiatives that will expand existing programs and increase efficiencies within the emergency food system, the Minnesota Food Support Program and the Child Nutrition Programs.

“General Mills is consistently ranked among the top five contributors of food in the U.S. because we care deeply about the issue of hunger,” said Ken Powell, chairman and CEO, General Mills, at a press conference today held at Minnesota Public Radio. “We believe change must come, and it must come now, to end the devastating and debilitating effects of hunger.”

Hunger in Minnesota has doubled in the last five years, affecting people in all parts of the state – urban, suburban and rural. One in 10 Minnesotans runs out of food resources before the end of every month, missing an average of 10 meals every 30 days. The impact of hunger reaches beyond those who are missing meals. Hunger-associated costs total more than $1.2 billion annually in Minnesota.

Founding partners of Hunger-Free Minnesota include all six Feeding America Food Banks in Minnesota, Hunger Solutions Minnesota and the Greater Twin Cities United Way. Corporate partners that have committed their support to date include General Mills, Cargill, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota, Hormel Foods and a pledge to invest from the Greater Twin Cities United Way.

Powell later addressed 150 local hunger-relief leaders at the Twin Cities Hunger Forum. Speaking at the event at General Mills’ headquarters, Powell said, “General Mills takes a lot of pride in the role we play in feeding people around the world each and every day, so when people go hungry, we want to help. Today, as we sit down together, I encourage you to find common ground … to find innovative ways to tackle the priorities of the Twin Cities Hunger Initiative.”

Today’s Twin Cities Hunger Forum brought together experts in the field who highlighted the need not only for more food donations, but also increased consumer utilization of already existing government programs. The event, presented by the Greater Twin Cities United Way in collaboration with the Twin Cities Hunger Initiative, was sponsored by General Mills, Cargill and Land O’Lakes.

About General Mills
One of the world’s leading food companies, General Mills operates in more than 100 countries and markets more than 100 consumer brands, including Cheerios, Häagen-Dazs, Nature Valley, Betty Crocker, Pillsbury, Green Giant, Old El Paso, Progresso, Yoplait, Cascadian Farm, Muir Glen, and more. Headquartered in Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA, General Mills had fiscal 2010 global net sales of US$16 billion, including the company’s $1.2 billion proportionate share of joint venture net sales.

About the General Mills Foundation
The mission of the General Mills Foundation, celebrating 56 years of giving, is to nourish communities. In fiscal 2010, General Mills awarded more than $100 million to communities across the country. Of the total, the Foundation contributed $22 million in grants in the targeted areas of hunger and nutrition wellness, and K-12 education. In addition, 82 percent of U.S. employees volunteer in the communities where they live and work.


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