SMITHFIELD, Va. – Smithfield Foods Inc. announced its partnership with the National Conservation Foundation’s Envirothon program which engages high school students in the United States and Canada in conservation initiatives.

The program will take Smithfield employees into their local communities to help students who are participating in the NCF-Envirothon. The program is a hands-on environmental problem-solving competition that includes training and testing in five natural resource categories: soils/land use, aquatic ecology, forestry, wildlife and current environmental issues. In-class assignments reinforce the subjects students will study during the program. Approximately 50,000 students throughout North America participate in the NCF-Envirothon annually.

“We’re excited to be partnering with NCF to sponsor this worthwhile program, which helps educate students about the environment and the value of preserving our natural resources,” said Dennis Treacy, Smithfield's executive vice president and chief sustainability officer. “For many years now, our employees have worked to achieve a wide range of environmental goals and targets, which help protect and conserve our nation's natural resources. We are excited to support students who share that passion.”

Smithfield is actively involved in sustainability projects that encompass animal care, the environment, food safety and quality, employees and helping the communities in which the company operates. At Smithfield’s Sustainability Excellence Awards program held in August, the reported that various projects implemented at Smithfield facilities across the country have saved more than 337 million gallons of water, nearly 9 million kilowatts of electricity, about 305,000 dekatherms of natural gas and about 128,000 gallons of fuel oil.

Steve Robinson, chair of the NCF board of trustees, said the NCF partnership with Smithfield “… help us all educate the next generation about the importance of natural resources to their future in North America as well as around the world.”