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The J. M. Smucker Company and Akron Children's Hospital Announce Partnership to Continue the Hospital's Child Literacy Efforts
Smucker Commits $500,000 to Support the Reach Out and Read Program at Akron Children's Hospital

ORRVILLE, Ohio, Feb. 14, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- Today, The J. M. Smucker Company (NYSE: SJM) and Akron Children's Hospital announced a multi-year partnership to continue the hospital's child literacy efforts. Smucker is committing $500,000 to support the Reach Out and Read program at each of Akron Children's Hospital's 28 pediatric care locations.

"We're so grateful to The J.M. Smucker Company for its generous support of our Reach Out and Read program for the next five years," said Grace Wakulchik, Akron Children's President and CEO. "Since 2003, we've put thousands of new books in the hands of young children at their annual well-child visits through this program. We know that this early intervention is crucial in preparing our children for success in school and beyond."

More than a third of American children start kindergarten without the skills necessary to succeed in school. The Reach Out and Read program provides children a foundation for literacy success by incorporating books into their doctor's visits and encouraging families to read aloud together. As part of the program, each child ages 6 months to 5 years old who comes in for their annual well check-up at an Akron Children's Hospital facility receives a book to take home.  In 2018, more than 60,000 new, developmentally appropriate books were distributed to children at their Akron Children's Hospital well visits. The gift from Smucker will go toward the purchase of new books for patients.

The impact of the program is what inspired Smucker to pledge its support for the next several years.

"We are committed to serving families with a passion for supporting children and promoting education," said Jill Penrose, Senior Vice President of Human Resources and Corporate Communications for The

J. M. Smucker Company. "We understand the importance of reading to early childhood development and are thrilled to be working with Akron Children's Hospital to enrich the lives of children in Northeast Ohio through our investment in the Reach Out and Read program."

About The J. M. Smucker Company
For more than 120 years, The J. M. Smucker Company has brought families together to share memorable meals and moments. Guided by a vision to engage, delight, and inspire consumers through trusted food and beverage brands that bring joy throughout their lives, Smucker has grown to be a well-respected North American marketer and manufacturer with a balanced portfolio of leading and emerging, on-trend brands. In consumer foods and beverages, its brands include Smucker's ®, Folgers ®, Jif ®, Dunkin' Donuts ®, Crisco ®, Café Bustelo ®, R.W. Knudsen Family ®, Sahale Snacks®, Smucker's ® Uncrustables ®, Robin Hood ®, and Bick's ®. In pet food and pet snacks, its brands include Rachael Ray ® Nutrish®, Meow Mix®, Milk-Bone®, Kibbles 'n Bits®, Natural Balance®, and Nature's Recipe® . The Company remains rooted in the Basic Beliefs of Quality, People, Ethics, Growth, and Independence established by its founder and namesake more than a century ago. For more information about our Company, visit

The J. M. Smucker Company is the owner of all trademarks referenced herein, except for the following, which are used under license: Dunkin' Donuts® is a registered trademark of DD IP Holder LLC, and Rachael Ray ® is a registered trademark of Ray Marks Co. LLC.  

Dunkin' Donuts® brand is licensed to The J. M. Smucker Company for packaged coffee products sold in retail channels such as grocery stores, mass merchandisers, club stores, and drug stores. This information does not pertain to Dunkin' Donuts ® coffee or other products for sale in Dunkin' Donuts ® restaurants.

About Akron Children's Hospital
Akron Children's Hospital is ranked among the best pediatric hospitals by U.S. News & World Report. Founded in 1890, Akron Children's is an independent children's hospital with two hospital campuses in northeast Ohio and more than 60 primary, specialty and urgent care locations. Akron Children's collaborates with many community partners to bring its neonatal and pediatric expertise to patients in their healthcare facilities. The hospital, which has more than a 1 million patient visits annually, also cares for children through its home care and school health programs, and advances pediatric health care through education, advocacy, community service and research. 


The J. M. Smucker Company logo. (PRNewsFoto/The J. M. Smucker Company) (PRNewsfoto/The J.M. Smucker Company)


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For further information: The J.M. Smucker Company, Media: Ray Hancart, Director, Communications & Media Relations:; Investors: Aaron Broholm, Vice President, Investor Relations:; Akron Children's Hospital, Kathleen Folkerth, Media Relations Specialist:; Holly Pupino: Corporate Communications Specialist:
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