RALEIGH, NC – This past month, Butterball LLC and its marketing team were presented regional and chapter merit awards by the National Agri-Marketing Association (NAMA) Carolinas/Virginia chapter during the annual Best of NAMA awards banquet, which was held at the Junior League of Raleigh Center for Community Leadership.

“It is a great honor to be recognized by such a highly regarded community of industry professionals for Butterball’s efforts in agricultural communications,” said Keith Shoemaker, CEO of Butterball. “Our goal through these campaigns is to strengthen North Carolina’s agricultural economy and to support the local farming communities by providing valuable, accurate information to the media. Receiving these awards demonstrates that our work is successful in achieving these initiatives.”

To gain local and national coverage during the 2009 “Fresh Season” leading up to Thanksgiving, Butterball worked with its corporate communications agency, Howard, Merrell & Partners. They promoted positive industry messages and celebrated company milestones, such as the processing of the millionth bird at Butterball’s two whole-bird facilities. Butterball also leveraged its second annual Garner schools art contest to engage students and reinforce the importance of agriculture in education.

Communication efforts resulted in coverage reaching an audience of more than 83 million, further disseminating positive messages about agriculture throughout communities across the nation.

The 2009 White House Bird press conference and media relations campaign was implemented after the National Turkey Federation selected a Butterball grower to provide the National Thanksgiving Turkey. A press conference at the Worley Family Farm, Princeton, NC, showcased where the presidential turkey was raised. Media were invited to tour the turkey house, meet and greet the owners and photograph the winning bird. The effort reached an audience of more than 3 million.

Garner, N.C.-based Butterball LLC is the largest producer of turkey products in the US. It produces more than 1 billion lbs. of turkey annually, and the company supplies its products to more than 30 countries.