Wild Oats To Headline Farm Aid 2005

BOULDER, Colo. -- Wild Oats Markets here will play a key role in the 20th anniversary of Farm Aid in Chicago next weekend.

As a supporter of locally grown produce, family farms, and the environment, Wild Oats said it will be providing natural and organic food to feed the artists and media during the all-day music event.

In addition, the national natural and organic foods retailer will give away five pairs of lawn tickets for the Farm Aid concert at each of its Chicagoland area stores in Hinsdale and Evanston. Customers can enter to win the tickets at Wild Oats stores. Wild Oats will also be sampling Wild Oats Organic Thompson Raisins at Farm Aid's Organic World Expo.

"We're thrilled to support an influential and progressive organization like Farm Aid," said Perry Odak, president and c.e.o. of Wild Oats Markets. "Wild Oats has always been an advocate of family farms, local communities and the environment, so partnering with Farm Aid is a perfect fit for our organization."

Season to season, local growers and regional farms provide Wild Oats stores with the widest variety of the highest quality produce from which to choose, added Odak, noting the vast selection of organic produce at heart of the company's stores.

Aside from its support of Farm Aid, Wild Oats also contributes to communities through several other initiatives, including in-kind or general donations, the Wooden Nickel Program, and food donations. Wild Oats is also a strong supporter of Fair Trade products, helping family farmers in developing countries receive a fair price for their products.

With annual sales of more than $1 billion, Wild Oats operates 112 natural foods stores in 24 states and British Columbia, Canada.

Willie Nelson, Neil Young, and John Mellencamp organized the first Farm Aid concert in 1985, to raise awareness about the loss of family farms and raise funds to keep farm families on their land. Musician Dave Matthews joined the Farm Aid board of directors in 2001. The organization has raised more than $27 million in an effort to build and strengthen family farm food production.
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