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FirstFruits Marketing Announces Opal® Apple’s Youth Make a Difference Grant Recipients

BY: Paj Ann Herr | DATE: July 06, 2015

YAKIMA, Wash. - July 6, 2015- FirstFruits Marketing of Washington, marketers of the widely acclaimed Opal® apple, has announced the recipients of grants from the Opal apple Youth Make a Difference Initiative, a campaign designed to provide financial support from the 2014-2015 Opal sales to youth-led food and agriculture-related non-profits.

Over 75 applications were received between January and March and 24 finalists were selected in April for a chance to receive a grant from the $150,000 Opal grant funds.  From April 15 to May 15, the public was asked to vote for the non-profit they most wanted to see receive a grant. Over 120,000 votes were tallied and 15 non-profit projects will be receiving grants ranging from $5,000 to $10,000. Those projects include:

  • SOS - Seasons of Sustenance; Loveland, OH
  • Northwest Initiative; Lansing, MI
  • Chilton County Joint Agriscience Farm; Maplesville, AL
  • Post Crashers 2.0; Northfield, NJ
  • Farm2Mountain Produce Club; Big Bear Lake, CA
  • Youth Planting Change; Wexford, PA
  • Go Healthy St. Louis; Saint Louis, MO
  • Cooking with Kids; Washington, DC
  • A Dream for the Future (Un Sueño Para el Futuro); Philadelphia, PA
  • One AHEC of a Garden!; Waterbury, CT
  • Healthy Food, Healthy Growing, Salida School Gardens Program; Salida, CA
  • Roots for the Home Team; St. Paul, MN
  • Farming Forward: Vertical Farming; Woonsocket, RI
  • Start a Snowball; Raleigh, NC
  • TEAM- Together Everyone Achieves More HEALTH; Logan, UT

"We've been really excited to see our funding for Youth Make a Difference grow year after year which has enabled us to give to and touch more non-profits," said Naomi Lule, CFO of FruitsFruits of Washington and Youth Make a Difference Committee Chairwoman. "However, this initiative isn't just about giving away money but also about raising awareness for food security and inspiring others to get involved and make a difference in their own communities."

Opal apple is known as the apple with a purpose: a portion of sales from each case of Opal apples sold is put toward the Youth Make a Difference Initiative.  This season, $150,000 was distributed through the initiative, doubling last season's amount.  Funds will be distributed in July to the winning non-profits. For more information about the grantees, please visit

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