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Smithfield Foods, Winn-Dixie and Aric Almirola With Richard Petty Motorsports Donate 60,000 Pounds of Protein to Second Harvest Food Bank of Central Florida


DAYTONA BEACH, Fla., Feb. 23, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- This week, Smithfield Foods' Helping Hungry Homes® initiative, a program focused on alleviating hunger and raising awareness of food insecurity across the country, joined forces with Winn-Dixie and Aric Almirola with Richard Petty Motorsports (RPM) to donate 60,000 pounds of protein to Second Harvest Food Bank of Central Florida. This donation, totaling more than 240,000 servings of protein, will help the nearly 500,000 people struggle with hunger every day in Central Florida.

Helping Hungry Homes – Daytona Beach, FL
From the left, Greg Higgerson, vice president of development for Second Harvest Food Bank of Central Florida, stands with Eddie Garcia, regional vice president for Winn-Dixie, Dennis Pittman, senior director of hunger relief for Smithfield Foods and Aric Almirola, driver of the No. 43 car for Richard Petty Motorsports. This week, Smithfield, Winn-Dixie and Richard Petty Motorsports donated 60,000 pounds of protein to Second Harvest Food Bank of Central Florida through two donation events in Orlando and Daytona Beach, FL.

Helping Hungry Homes
Helping Hungry Homes® is Smithfield's initiative focused on alleviating hunger across the country.

A photo accompanying this announcement is available at

"Protein is not always a readily available resource for our food bank or those we serve," said Greg Higgerson, vice president of development for Second Harvest Food Bank of Central Florida. "This generous donation from Smithfield, Richard Petty and Winn-Dixie makes that resource a guarantee in the coming weeks for families in need throughout our area."

Smithfield and Winn-Dixie delivered 30,000 pounds of protein to Second Harvest Food Bank of Central Florida's Orlando branch on Tuesday. Today, Aric Almirola with RPM joined Smithfield and Winn-Dixie to deliver an additional 30,000 pounds to the food bank's Daytona Beach location. At both events, each organization's representatives discussed the impact of food insecurity in Central Florida, where one in six people struggle with hunger.

"We have a long-standing relationship with Smithfield and share a true passion for helping those in need throughout the communities we serve," said Eddie Garcia, regional vice president for Winn-Dixie. "This donation to Second Harvest Food Bank of Central Florida is yet another way we deliver on this mission, and we are proud of the positive impact made on our Central Florida neighbors."

The donation to Second Harvest Food Bank of Central Florida was part of Helping Hungry Homes® 2017 donation tour where Smithfield will provide large-scale protein donations to nearly 50 food banks across the country. At today's event, Aric Almirola, a Florida-native who has partnered with Smithfield in recent years to donate thousands of pounds of protein, helped present the donation.

"We are honored to participate in Smithfield and Winn-Dixie's donation leading into the race weekend here in Daytona Beach," said Aric Almirola. "I'm humbled to partner with Smithfield and Winn-Dixie yet again to give back to this community—a state that I have called home most of my life and community that has become part of my family during my racing career."

To date, Helping Hungry Homes® has provided more than 49 million servings of protein to food banks across America.

"As a global food company, we value our role to provide high-quality protein to our communities in need," said Dennis Pittman, senior director of hunger relief for Smithfield Foods. "We are proud to stand with Winn-Dixie and provide Second Harvest Food Bank of Central Florida with a donation that will provide nutritional support to families across the 16 counties the food bank serves."

Following this week's events, Helping Hungry Homes® will make its way to Las Vegas, Nevada on March 9. The donation tour will then host donation events in Austin on March 21 and Dallas/Fort Worth, Texas on March 23. For more information about Helping Hungry Homes® and a list of upcoming donation events, visit

About Smithfield Foods
Smithfield Foods is a $14 billion global food company and the world's largest pork processor and hog producer. In the United States, the company is also the leader in numerous packaged meats categories with popular brands including Smithfield, Eckrich, Nathan's Famous, Farmland, Armour, John Morrell, Cook's, Kretschmar, Gwaltney, Curly's, Margherita, Carando, Healthy Ones, Krakus, Morliny and Berlinki. Smithfield Foods is committed to providing good food in a responsible way and maintains robust animal care, community involvement, employee safety, environmental and food safety and quality programs. For more information, visit

About Second Harvest Food Bank of Central Florida
SHFBCF is a member of Feeding America – the largest charitable domestic hunger-relief organization in the United States. SHFBCF secures and distributes food and grocery products to approximately 550 local nonprofit feeding programs throughout Central Florida. Last year, with the help of food and financial donors, volunteers and a caring, committed community, the food bank distributed 52 million meals to partner programs such as food pantries, soup kitchens, women's shelters, senior centers, day care centers and Kids Cafes. In addition, Second Harvest's 14-week culinary program teaches foodservice-based technical, life and employability skills to economically hard-pressed adults. Our community turns to Second Harvest's partner agencies more than 71,000 times per week. To learn more about SHFBCF, visit

About Winn-Dixie
Winn-Dixie Stores, Inc. is a subsidiary of Southeastern Grocers, which is the second-largest supermarket chain in the Southeast based on store count. Founded in 1925, Winn-Dixie employs more than 38,000 associates who serve customers in approximately 500 grocery stores, 145 liquor stores and 280 in-store pharmacies throughout the five southeastern states of Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana and Mississippi. For more information, please visit and

About Richard Petty Motorsports
A performance and marketing driven company, Richard Petty Motorsports, co-owned by NASCAR Hall of Famer Richard Petty and successful business entrepreneur Andrew Murstein, is one of the most recognized brands in all of motorsports. With a history of over 200 wins and business partnerships with national and global leaders, today the race operation fields one team in competition in the NASCAR premier series with driver Aric Almirola. Almirola will return to the iconic No. 43 Ford with partners Smithfield Foods, STP, United States Air Force and Fresh From Florida. The team is headquartered in Mooresville, N.C.

Media Contacts:

Dalton Agency for Smithfield
Kaytee Allaben
(904) 226-9890

Richard Petty Motorsports
Heather Lumpp
(704) 677-7056 

Second Harvest Food Bank of Central Florida 
Greg Higgerson
(407) 514-1021 

Southeastern Grocers
Kaley Shaffer
(904) 370-5980 

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