WASHINGTON, DC — August 13, 1999 — Coca-Cola USA and The Minute Maid Company today announced a pledge of $750,000 to an education campaign called Safeguarding Our Last Link. Launched by the Food Marketing Institute Foundation (FMIF) in May of 1998 with the goal of educating the last link in the food chain — the consumer — about good food handling practices, the campaign has raised nearly $8.5 million to date. The Coca-Cola Company donation — at the highest recognition level — gives the campaign a major boost.

    “The Coca-Cola Company has a long history of supporting education,” remarked Jack Stahl, Coca-Cola USA president. “The Safeguarding Our Last Link campaign will help consumers learn important tips and provide education materials at no cost to local communities."

    "Together, Coca-Cola and Minute Maid will help distribute information to consumers everywhere on good ways to get the best taste possible on the products they buy,” said Ralph H. Cooper, president and CEO, The Minute Maid Company.

    Led by James E. Ukrop, chairman of Virginia -based Ukrop’s Super Markets, the Safeguarding Our Last Link Campaign committee is seeking donations from companies interested in educating consumers on proper food handling practices through literature and instructional programs. The Foundation recently helped fund the creation of lesson plans designed to teach fourth through six grade children about food safety. The kit will be made available to interested teachers free of charge.

    “Coca-Cola has always been a leader in the food retail industry,” remarked Tim Hammonds, president and CEO of the Food Marketing Institute, at the time of the pledge. “Coke’s generous support of the Safeguarding campaign is an out-standing demonstration of their commitment to the consumer and to the industry.”

    For more in formation about the Food Marketing Institute Foundation and the Safeguarding Our Last Link campaign, please call (202/429-8249) or click below.