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    Wal-Mart Working with Local Asparagus Grower in May Promo

    BENTONVILLE, Ark. - Enforcing an image as connected to local farmers, Wal-Mart Stores said yesterday that it will showcase Indiana-based Melon Acres, Inc. during the month of May in conjunction with its Salute to America's Farmers program, which spotlights local agricultural products grown in Wal-Mart's operating areas.

    BENTONVILLE, Ark. - Enforcing an image as connected to local farmers, Wal-Mart Stores said yesterday that it will showcase Indiana-based Melon Acres, Inc. during the month of May in conjunction with its Salute to America's Farmers program, which spotlights local agricultural products grown in Wal-Mart's operating areas.

    Melon Acres of Oaktown, about 70 miles southwest of Indianapolis, will team with Wal-Mart to provide 55,000 pounds of Hoosier home-grown fresh asparagus to numerous Wal-Mart Supercenters and Neighborhood Markets in the region.

    "Wal-Mart buys more U.S. agricultural products than any other retailer in the world," said Ron McCormick, Wal-Mart's v.p., produce/floral division, in a statement. "We understand that consumers want to purchase quality products that help support the local economy, and we're proud of our ability to bring wholesome, home-grown selections to our customers in Indiana. This commitment not only allows us to offer fresh, quality selections but also generate savings on distribution costs that we can pass on to our customers."

    Wal-Mart launched the Salute to America's Farmer program in September of last year, and during the months following is showcasing local growers from states around the country. Local farmers and growers in all 50 states will be spotlighted throughout the upcoming year.

    During each state's showcased month, consumers can identify local produce via corresponding signage in local Supercenters and Neighborhood Markets. In addition to Indiana's Melon Acres, Liuzza Produce in Louisiana, Eubanks Produce in Mississippi and Sunny Ridge in Florida are being saluted in their respective regions during the upcoming weeks.

    Wal-Mart's stores in Indiana include 76 Supercenters, 19 discount stores, 16 Sam's Club, and four Neighborhood Market locations.

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