Ardent Mills Joins Partners in Food Solutions to Strengthen Africa’s ability to feed its growing population
DENVER, Colorado, January 19, 2017 – Ardent Mills, the premier flour-milling and ingredient company, is joining Partners in Food Solutions, a U.S. nonprofit with headquarters in Minneapolis, as its newest corporate partner.
Partners in Food Solutions connects corporate volunteers with small and growing food businesses in eight African countries in an effort to improve food security, nutrition and economic development across Africa, where the population is expected to double by 2050. Strengthening the middle of the local food system – the processing sector – can create a ripple effect of stable markets for smallholder farmers, job growth and more nutritious food available to consumers. Through a model of remote consulting pioneered by Partners in Food Solutions and recognized by leaders around the world, Ardent Mills’ volunteer experts will connect with African client businesses to provide technical and business expertise.
Ardent Mills’ volunteers will join others from General Mills, Cargill, Royal DSM, Bὒhler and The Hershey Company.
“Our social responsibility efforts are focused on ending hunger and educating people on the value of grains to a healthy, balanced diet in the communities where we live and work across North America. By joining hands with Partners in Food Solutions, we are expanding our reach with these efforts on a truly international scale,” said Dan Dye, Ardent Mills CEO. “We are all about nourishing what’s next and engaging our team members in helping others.”
Partners in Food Solutions CEO Jeff Dykstra underscored the importance of this effort, “We believe that supporting the development of a robust local food industry in Africa is at the heart of building stable and thriving communities. Africa is home to more than 1.2 billion people and that population is expected to double to 2.4 billion by 2050. Harnessing the power of the private sector can have a significant impact on increasing food security across the continent for a rapidly growing population.”
Adding Ardent Mills volunteer experts to its force is part of Partners in Food Solutions' aggressive growth plan over the next few years. The five-year-old nonprofit has already helped more than 700 food companies through training or consulting projects, and has gone from working in four countries in 2011 to eight in 2017. Partners in Food Solutions has 980 volunteers who have contributed 75,000 hours of technical and business expertise to promising food processors, who in turn are doing business with 896,000 smallholder farmers.
Partners in Food Solutions began as an internal employee volunteer program at General Mills in 2008. It was spun out as a nonprofit organization in 2011, with Cargill joining the effort along with the Dutch nutrition and pharmaceuticals company DSM, Swiss technology company Bὒhler, and The Hershey Company in 2015.
About Partners in Food Solutions
Partners in Food Solutions, a consortium of leading food companies, is working to strengthen food security, improve nutrition and increase economic development across Africa by expanding and increasing the competitiveness of the food processing sector. We link corporate volunteer experts from Ardent Mills, General Mills, Cargill, Royal DSM, Bühler and The Hershey Company, with promising entrepreneurs in eight African countries. Our volunteers share their expertise and food industry know-how with our client companies remotely, assisting them on tailor-made projects to help improve quality, efficiency and scale their businesses. PFS collaborates closely with TechnoServe, Root Capital, the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.
About Ardent Mills
Ardent Mills is the premier flour-milling and ingredient company whose vision is to be the trusted partner in nurturing its customers, consumers and communities through innovative and nutritious grain-based solutions. Ardent Mills' operations and services are supported by more than 40 flour mills and bakery-mix facilities along with a specialty bakery and Mobile Innovation Center, all located in the U.S., Canada and Puerto Rico. Deeply rooted in communities throughout North America, Ardent Mills is headquartered in Denver, Colorado, and employs more than 100 certified millers, supporting thousands of local jobs and contributing billions of dollars to local economies. To learn more about Ardent Mills, visit ardentmills.com.