Hershey to Help Provide Basic Nutrition to 50,000 School Children in Ghana with New 'Energize Learning' Program

Partnership with Government of Ghana and Project Peanut Butter will provide supplemental nutrition critical to helping children in need

HERSHEY, Pa.--()--The Hershey Company (NYSE: HSY) today announced an innovative partnership with the Ghana School Feeding Programme and Project Peanut Butter to provide supplemental nutrition to school children in Ghana.

Ghana is one of the strongest emerging countries in Africa. However, access to basic nutrition is still a challenge, with about 30,000 children suffering from malnutrition annually, according to Project Peanut Butter. Through Energize Learning, Hershey will distribute Vivi, a highly nutritious peanut-based supplement, to children through the Ghanaian school feeding program.

“At Hershey, we believe that bright futures start with basic nutrition,” said John P. Bilbrey, Chairman and CEO of The Hershey Company. “Energize Learning will harness our strongest assets – our employees and our food expertise – to provide children in Ghana with the basic nutrition they need to learn and grow. Through this partnership, it’s our hope that children can make the most of their education and focus on their studies, rather than their stomachs.”

The Vivi supplement, produced in the Hershey-funded Project Peanut Butter factory in Kumasi, Ghana, has been found to increase the daily caloric intake for hungry children by 25 percent. Distribution will initially be prioritized to school feeding programs in the vicinity of the Kumasi factory and in the northern region of Ghana, where child malnutrition rates are highest. The program aims to reach 50,000 school children by 2016.

As part of Energize Learning, Hershey employees are sharing their expertise with local farmers to increase productivity and expand Ghana’s peanut crop – a critical component of Vivi – for the long-term.

“Our partnership with Hershey addresses a great social need and will positively impact Ghana’s local economy by supporting both our school children and the livelihoods of our small holder farmers,” said Hon. Seidu Paakuna Adamu, National Coordinator, Ghana School Feeding Programme.

“This social innovation program is an example of how private, public and non-profit partners can work together to have a positive impact on the lives of children, farmers and their families in Ghana,” said Carly Edwards, Country Director, Project Peanut Butter Ghana.

Hershey also is working with the University of Ghana to evaluate and analyze the outcome of Energize Learning over the next two years. The company hopes to eventually expand the program to reach all children in Ghana’s school feeding program.

Hershey’s commitment to improving the lives of children dates back to the 1909 creation of the Milton Hershey School, which offers a private education to socially and economically-eligible students in pre-kindergarten through 12th grade. Energize Learning is part of Hershey’s holistic commitment to helping children in need across the globe build bright futures and lead successful lives.

For more information, visit nourishingminds.com.

About Project Peanut Butter

Project Peanut Butter (PPB) seeks to advance the treatment of severe malnutrition, the single largest cause of child death in the world today, using effective, locally produced ready-to-use therapeutic foods. This non-profit was formed to provide needed nutritional and medical support primarily to children suffering from severe acute malnutrition in sub-Saharan Africa and beyond.

About The Hershey Company

The Hershey Company (NYSE: HSY), headquartered in Hershey, Pa., is a global confectionery leader known for bringing goodness to the world through its chocolate, sweets, mints and other great-tasting snacks. Hershey has more than 22,000 employees around the world who work every day to deliver delicious, quality products. The company, which has more than 80 brands around the world that drive over $7.4 billion in annual revenues, includes such iconic brand names as Hershey's, Reese's, Hershey's Kisses, Jolly Rancher, Ice Breakers and Brookside. Hershey is focused on growing its presence in key international markets while continuing to build its competitive advantage in North America. Additionally, Hershey is poised to expand its portfolio into categories beyond confectionery, finding new ways to bring goodness to people everywhere.

At Hershey, goodness has always been about more than delicious products. For 120 years, Hershey has been committed to good business by operating fairly, ethically and sustainably to make a positive impact on society. This means contributing to a better life for its employees, consumers, communities, and ultimately, creating a bright future for children in need. This commitment is exemplified by Milton Hershey School, established in 1909 by the company's founder and administered by Hershey Trust Company. The children who attend the school receive education, housing, and medical care – thriving as direct beneficiaries of The Hershey Company's success.

Photos/Multimedia Gallery Available:

Energize Learning: Building a Distribution Network

Energize Learning: On the road to Ghana

Energize Learning: Setting up a factory


The Hershey Company
Jeff Beckman, 717-534-8090


The Hershey Company
Jeff Beckman, 717-534-8090