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    General Mills’ ‘Pink Together’ Lets Survivors, Supporters Direct Funds

    $1 million of total $2 million donation to be decided by online community

    To mark its fifth anniversary, “Pink Together,” a national breast cancer awareness and support campaign conducted by Minneapolis-based General Mills that starts today, is allowing consumers to make their voices heard in the fight against the disease.

    This year, for the first time, consumers will be able to direct half of the $2 million donation General Mills will make to Susan G. Komen for the Cure. Through April 14, 2012, on PinkTogether.com, an online Facebook community, visitors can choose how $1 million of the total donation will be shared between two important Komen initiatives: the Treatment Assistance Program, which helps women access care they otherwise might not be able to afford, and Prevention Research, which will help find ways to prevent breast cancer.

    The percentage of votes garnered for each initiative will determine the percentage of the $1 million donation each program will receive. Appropriately enough, results will be revealed on Sunday, May 13, 2012 --  Mother’s Day.

    “Through our ever-growing online community, Pink Together wanted to give those touched by breast cancer a voice in determining how our donation should be shared between two Komen programs that are pivotal to the breast cancer cause,” explained Eric Jensen, Pink Together campaign manager at General Mills. “As the heart of Pink Together, PinkTogether.com helps connect the 2.5 million breast cancer survivors in America and the many people supporting them on their journeys -- including many of us in the General Mills family. People can find strength together on the site by sharing inspiring stories of survival or words of encouragement and support for those battling the disease. One person’s story is truly another person’s hope.”

    To encourage personal connections on PinkTogether.com, General Mills will give $1 to the Komen organization for each Message of Hope sent to someone who has shared their story through the online community (up to $25,000) during October. This is in addition to the manufacturer’s $2 million donation to Komen.

    “With an estimated 1 million Americans living with undiagnosed breast cancer, Pink Together not only aims to raise greater awareness of the disease, but also provides breast cancer survivors and supporters with a community of hope,” noted Katrina McGhee, EVP and chief marketing officer, Susan G. Komen for the Cure.

    To spread this hopeful message, PinkTogether.com will feature the inspirational stories of its five 2011 Pink Together “Survivor Ambassadors.” This year’s ambassadors are Brenda Boggs, Rising Fawn, Ga.; Katie Parker, Rapid City, S.D.; Marissa Vasquez, Phoenix, Ariz.; Marguerite Wachter, Apple Valley, Minn.; and JaQuitta Williams, Atlanta, Ga.

    Ambassadors will also appear on the Pink Together YouTube channel, which offers a behind-the-scenes music video, and on specially themed packaging on a range of General Mills’ brands during the month of October, among them Cheerios Cereal, Green Giant Frozen Vegetables and Nature Valley Granola Bars.

    For more information on the retail community’s breast cancer awareness activities, read the Progressive Grocer September 2011 article “Still Pink” at www.progressivegrocer.com/inprint/article/id2150/still-pink/.

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