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January 20, 2010   Email to Friend 

FIRST PEANUT BUTTER FOR HAITI TO ARRIVE FRIDAY
Darryal Ray
(334) 613-4187
January 20, 2010

DOTHAN, Ala. -- Two truckloads of peanut butter -- almost 75,000 pounds -- are due to arrive in Haiti Friday in wake of the devastating earthquake which struck near the capital of Port-au-Prince on Jan. 12.

According to the Dothan-based Alabama Peanut Producers Association (APPA), a division of the Alabama Farmers Federation, the peanut butter is part of a relief effort by a coalition of peanut producers, peanut butter manufacturers and food distributors who have pledged at least $70,000 toward combating the food shortages in that small island republic.

The project, Peanut Butter for Haiti, was initiated by Barton Rice, executive director of Early County 2055, a Blakely, Ga., non-profit organization that made the first financial pledge.

The project quickly grew when Lisa Collins of Early County 2055 contacted several peanut organization leaders to seek advice on the best way to purchase the peanut butter and ship it to Haiti. Within two days, donations reached $67,000. Jeff Johnson, president of Birdsong Peanuts said the effort could reach 1 million servings of peanut butter.

The APPA joined with individuals and organizations in other Southeastern states to pledge more than $7,500.

The peanut coalition is working with Tara Foods (Kroger) and ConAgra (Peter Pan) to obtain the peanut butter. The J.M. Smucker Company donated one truckload of peanut butter.

The first two truckloads of peanut butter have been delivered to Norfolk, Va., and loaded onto the USS Sacagawea. It is expected to arrive in Haiti Friday, and will be distributed through Operation Blessing.

The next load of peanut butter will be delivered to Miami next week for transfer to Haiti.

Peanut butter requires no refrigeration, and is known for its high nutritive value.

Tax-deductible contributions may be sent to: EC 2055 - PNB for Haiti, P.O. Box 725, Blakely, GA 39823. Checks should be made payable to "Early County 2055" and note "PNB for Haiti."

For more information, contact Teresa Wilson at the APPA at (334) 792-6482 or twilson@alpeanuts.com, Sally Tabb Wells at stabb@birdson-peanuts.com or Lisa Collins at lcollins@earlycounty2055.com.


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