DOLE™ Fruit Bowls™ Cultivates a Relationship with the National Gardening Association and Weekly Reader™ for National Garden Month™ 2005


Rose Getch
National Gardening Association
(800) 538-7476, ext. 129

Erin Barrier
GolinHarris for Dole
(213) 623-4200 ext. 707

WESTLAKE VILLAGE, CA (March 29, 2005) - In an effort to help children develop healthy eating habits early in life by demonstrating the nutrition and health benefits of more healthful foods (such as fruits and vegetables), DOLE Fruit Bowls has partnered with the National Gardening Association and Weekly Reader to create "Grow and Give a Garden!" classroom activities in celebration of National Garden Month 2005 in April.

"Grow and Give a Garden!" provides students with hands-on learning about how plants grow and the value of fruits and vegetables, while cultivating a fondness for gardening and enjoying the "fruits" of their labor," says Dr. Cynthia Klemmer, Director of Education, NGA.

"Dole has a long tradition of supporting nutrition and environmental education in the classroom, and we are proud to partner with prestigious organizations that share these goals." says Amy Myrdal, MS, RD, Director of Nutrition Marketing & Research, Dole Nutrition Institute. "Kids, just like plants, need the proper nutrition to grow, and since Dole is committed to educating students about more healthful ways to eat and live, our partnership with the National Gardening Association and Weekly Reader makes perfect sense."

The "Grow and Give a Garden!" activities offer tools for educators to engage kids in hands-on lessons about gardening including a teacher's guide, student worksheets and a full-color activity poster featuring fun nutrition and gardening class projects. Students follow the four "Ps" to make growing a garden easy:

  • Plan: In this first step, children decide what type of garden they want to grow.
  • Produce: Students plant their seedlings in an empty DOLE Fruit Bowls container so they can watch the roots grow.
  • Plant: When roots and tiny leaves are visible it's time to transplant seedlings from the DOLE Fruit Bowls container into a larger container.
  • Party: Students can have a party to show off their new plants, or they can give them to family and friends as gifts.

"Partnering with DOLE Fruit Bowls is ideal because our goals of encouraging people to grow fruits and vegetables and to eat healthful food go hand-in-hand, said Mike Metallo, President of the National Gardening Association. "The in-school activities involve students in the entire growing process - planting the seed, helping it to grow, and actually harvesting and eating the final product. Most importantly, students come to understand the health benefits of consuming plant-based foods, such as fruits and vegetables."

"Grow and Give a Garden!" will be distributed to schools in cities nationwide, reaching more than two million students, parents and teachers. Teachers also can download the poster and other student activities at,, or

About DOLE Fruit Bowls and Dole Food Company, Inc.
DOLE Fruit Bowls offer bite-sized all-natural fruit in convenient single-serve plastic containers. One individual 4-oz. DOLE Fruit Bowls diced fruit snack equals a whole serving of fruit. It's easy to slip one into a lunch box or to enjoy as a sweet treat at home.

Dole Food Company, Inc., with 2003 revenues of $4.8 billion, is the world's largest producer and marketer of high-quality fresh fruit, fresh vegetables, and fresh-cut flowers, markets a growing line of packaged foods, and is a produce industry leader in nutrition, education, and research.

DOLE and FRUIT BOWLS are registered trademarks of Dole Food Company, Inc.

About the Weekly Reader Corporation
Weekly Reader Corporation is a leader in educational publishing. Created in 1902, Weekly Reader publishes 16 magazines and a variety of other supplemental products that reinforce curriculum, help teachers meet standards, and engage students. All sixteen magazines have won awards for excellence in educational journalism. Weekly Reader currently serves approximately 9 million students and 300,000 teachers nationwide.

Weekly Reader Corporation is part of WRC Media Inc., a leading publishing and media company that creates and distributes innovative supplementary education materials for the school, library, and home markets. In addition to Weekly Reader Corporation, WRC Media's operating companies include AGS Publishing, CompassLearning?, World Almanac Education Group, Inc., and WRC Consumer and Custom Publishing Group, which together market some of the best-known brands in educational publishing.

Weekly Reader is a registered trademark of Weekly Reader Corporation.

About the National Gardening Association (NGA)
The National Gardening Association (NGA), founded in 1973, is a national nonprofit leader in plant-based education. NGA's mission is to promote gardening as a means to renew and sustain the essential connection among people, plants, and the environment. To fulfill this mission, they offer publications and programs focused on five core areas: education, health and wellness, environmental stewardship, community development, and home gardening. For more information, visit

National Garden Month and Give a Garden are registered trademarks of the National Gardening Association.

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