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Red, White and Blue "M&M's" Generate $3.5 Million for American Red Cross Disaster Relief Fund

For the first time ever, Masterfoods USA, a Mars Incorporated Company, created a special package of Red, White and Blue "M&M's" specifically to benefit the American Red Cross. One hundred percent of all Masterfood's profits from sales of the product were donated to the American Red Cross Disaster Relief Fund, with a small percentage going to fund the organization's Disaster Leadership Conference. In January, Masterfoods USA presented a $3.5 million check to the Red Cross - more than $1 million more than they had anticipated to raise.

The national campaign theme for this promotion, "Taking Care of America Every Day," draws attention back to Red Cross lifesaving efforts in communities year-round. "Through appearances on television, radio and newspapers and creative displays in stores across the country, the new 'M&M's' captured the heart of Americans," said Skip Seitz, senior vice president, American Red Cross Growth and Integrated Development. "This generous promotion and donation will allow the Red Cross to respond to disasters in communities nationwide, providing lifesaving relief such as food, shelter, counseling and much more."


Dr. John Clizbe, vice president of Red Cross Disaster Services, accepts the $3.5 million check from Masterfoods USA from Marlene Machut, external affairs director at Masterfoods USA, a Mars Incorporated Company.

Due to the overwhelming interest of the American public in the Red, White and Blue "M&M's", Masterfoods USA has agreed to continue their support of the Red Cross, offering 100 percent of proceeds (up to $50,000) from online purchases of the chocolate candies beginning in February. Beginning in February, visitors to will be able to purchase the Red, White and Blue "M&M's" and benefit the Red Cross Disaster Relief Fund.

Masterfoods USA has also provided other support to the Red Cross following the tragedies of September 11, donating approximately $182,000 in food and services at ground zero to help feed emergency response workers and families impacted and contributing more than $9,000 worth of Starburst and Chupa Chups lollipops for the Afghan children's gift parcels on the Red Cross Ramadan Relief Flight in December 2001.

During March 2002, Red Cross Month, Masterfoods USA will sponsor a promotion with Coinstar Inc. benefiting the programs and services of the humanitarian organization. When a donation of $1 or more is made to the Red Cross from a Coinstar machine, donors will receive a coupon for $1 off a purchase of two M&M/Mars products. Coinstar machines are located in 9,000 supermarkets nationwide and enable customers to convert their spare change into cash or donations to nonprofit organizations. Consumers can visit or call 1-800-928-CASH to find the nearest Coinstar machine.

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