BENTONVILLE, Ark. – Dec. 14, 2006 – Wal-Mart Stores announced today that Kentucky-based Triple T Farm & Greenhouse, LLC will be showcased during the months of December and January in conjunction with the company’s Salute to America’s Farmers program. Salute to America’s Farmers, launched in September, is a year-long campaign to spotlight Wal-Mart’s commitment to purchase from local growers for distribution to stores in their areas in support of locally grown agricultural products. Throughout the next several weeks, Triple T Farm & Greenhouse will team with Wal-Mart Stores to provide home-grown fresh herbs to numerous Wal-Mart Supercenters and Neighborhood Markets in the region and provide visibility to the company’s commitment to Kentucky agriculture and growers around the country.
“Wal-Mart buys more United States agricultural products than any other retailer in the world and we’re proud to introduce Salute to America’s Farmers as a tribute to our country’s growers, underscoring our company-wide commitment to farmers across the United States,” said Bruce Peterson, Wal-Mart Stores senior vice president, perishable food division. “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 Kentucky. 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.”
Triple T Farm & Greenhouse, LLC, located in Nancy, Ky., is a family operation run by third generation farmers. Once strictly a tobacco farm, about six years ago the company began growing fresh herbs in response to the decline of the tobacco industry. The change proved to be a success and the company has been steadily growing ever since. Triple T Farm & Greenhouse supplies fresh cut and packaged basil, dill, chives, rosemary and mint to Wal-Mart—selling the retailer about 29,000 cases every year.
“Wal-Mart recognizes the value of locally grown produce and providing it to their customers,” said Tim Tarter, president of Triple T Farm & Greenhouse. “Through our relationship with them, we’ve been able to expand and diversify our market, opening new doors for us, and allowing us to bring more fresh herbs to homes throughout Kentucky and surrounding areas.”
Wal-Mart launched the Salute to America’s Farmer program in September and each month will showcase one local grower from each of four states. 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 Kentucky, Wal-Mart suppliers Rice Fruit Company in Pennsylvania, Turkey Knob Growers in Virginia and Arrowhead Farms in Alabama are being saluted in their respective regions during the upcoming weeks.
“Triple T Farm is an important supplier to the agricultural industry in the state of Kentucky,” said Michael Judge, Executive Director of Marketing for the Kentucky Department of Agriculture. “We take great pride in our local farmers and appreciate Wal-Mart’s continued support and commitment toward the growers and producers in our state.”
Wal-Mart’s relationships with U.S. suppliers extend beyond its support of local agriculture. In 2005, Wal-Mart spent $200 billion on merchandise through its relationship with 61,000 U.S. suppliers. Wal-Mart Stores, Inc spent $1,901,796,630 for merchandise and services with 1,177 suppliers in the state of Kentucky in FYE 2006. As a result of these supplier relationships, Wal-Mart supports 54,241 supplier jobs in Kentucky.
As of October 2006, Wal-Mart’s presence in Kentucky includes 61 Supercenters, 20 Discount Stores and 7 SAM’S Clubs. It also has two Distribution Centers for a total of 30,983. associates.
About Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (NYSE: WMT)
Every week, more than 127 million customers visit Wal-Mart Stores, Supercenters, Neighborhood Markets, and Sam’s Club locations across America. The company and its Foundation are committed to a philosophy of giving back locally. Wal-Mart (NYSE: WMT) is proud to support the causes that are important to customers and associates right in their own neighborhoods, and last year gave more than $245 million to local United States communities. To learn more, visit www.walmartfacts.com, www.walmart.com, or www.walmartfoundation.org.
*supplier figures provided by Dun & Bradstreet