Land O’Lakes, Inc. isn’t your average food and agricultural business -- we’re a cooperative. Part of being a co-op means coming together to help our families, friends and neighbors. That’s why we’re dedicated to alleviating hunger, supporting education and strengthening our communities through corporate giving and the Land O’Lakes Foundation.
This past year was a big one for us. Our support to nonprofit organizations, higher education institutions and community initiatives totaled more than $11.6 million. But the real story lies in the lives we’ve changed. Each year, our Foundation and Community Report helps bring these stories to life. We hope you’ll check out a few of our favorites from 2015.
A helping harvest
Believe it or not, a single garden can make a big difference. Just ask the FFA students tending the Roland-Story Answer Plot® Community Garden in Story City, Iowa. With support from our Foundation, their advisers and WinField master agronomists, the students spent a summer literally getting their hands dirty in order to give back. And the hard work paid off. At harvest, their garden grew more than 5,400 pounds of produce, all of which went to families in need in the Story City community.
Advocating for ag
Trey Forsyth grew up on a farm. He’s known corn and soybeans his entire life. But what he didn’t know was growing crops in Indiana isn’t the same as growing crops back home in Iowa. This is just one new perspective Trey learned thanks to the Global Food Challenge Emerging Leaders for Food Security Program. This unique, year-long fellowship took Trey and nine other college students to rural America, urban centers, Africa and back again. Now, they’re sharing their experiences and helping us spread the word on food security and what it will take to feed the world by 2050.
In the event of a grain bin accident, seconds can mean the difference between life and death. Without proper equipment, a quick response becomes much more difficult. It’s a reality the Gowrie Volunteer Fire Department in Gowrie, Iowa, knew all too well until West Central Cooperative stepped in with a $500 donation. Today, the co-op’s contribution -- matched dollar-for-dollar by our Foundation -- is helping these volunteer firefighters save lives.
In 2015, we worked together for the common good, because it’s who we are and how we operate.