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USDA TO DONATE AGRICULTURAL COMMODITIES FOR SCHOOL FEEDING IN VIETNAM

WASHINGTON, Sept. 11, 2002 – The U.S. Department of Agriculture today announced that it will donate 16,800 metric tons of commodities valued at $3 million to Land O’Lakes, a dairy co-op, for use in Vietnam under the Global Food for Education (GFE) program. The donation includes 550 tons of U.S. nonfat dry milk, 6,250 tons of soybean meal and 10,000 tons of wheat.

A non-profit division of Land O’Lakes will barter the milk for the formulation, additional ingredients, packaging and distribution of a fortified milk product to be given to 80,000 Vietnamese school children. The organization will sell the remaining commodities, and the proceeds will be used for supplementing the school feeding costs, school supplies and latrines.

Land O’Lakes’ activities in Vietnam will improve nutrition and health, increase school attendance and enrollment, especially for girls, and improve the learning environment for the school children.

The fiscal 2002 agreement with Land O’Lakes was signed on Aug. 22, 2002. The donation is made under USDA=s Section 416(b) program, administered by the Foreign Agricultural Service. This agreement is part of the $300-million pilot GFE initiative to expand access to basic education and improve childhood development in poor countries. Under this initiative, the United States is providing surplus agricultural commodities to improve student enrollment, attendance and performance, with special emphasis on increasing female enrollment. The supply period for this donation is fiscal year 2002.

For further information, contact Michele Kouadio of FAS at (202) 690-0637, or send a message via the Internet to kouadio@fas.usda.gov. Information on the GFE initiative can be found on the Internet at http://www.fas.usda.gov/excredits/gffei.html.

FAS news releases are available on the Internet at http://www.fas.usda.gov by fax polling. Callers should set their fax machines for polling and dial (202) 720-1728. For additional information about Web or fax access, contact FAS Public Affairs Division at (202) 720-7115.

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PR 0268-02



 
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