General Mills seeks Naturally Boulder seat

BOULDER – Fortune 500 food company General Mills Inc. has applied for a seat on the board of Naturally Boulder, according to Doug Radi, president of the local industry trade group.

Locally, Minneapolis-based General Mills (NYSE: GIS) works with Fresca Foods Inc. in Louisville to make both LaraBar products and frozen sauces and pastas for the Progresso Foods label.

General Mills subsidiary Small Planet Foods Inc., also in Minnesota, bought Denver-based Humm Foods Inc. in 2008, the parent company of the LaraBar fruit and nut nutrition bars. In August, Progresso Foods, the General Mills brand, made the announcement about its new partnership with Fresca.

Small Planet Foods is the natural and organic products group of General Mills, which includes Cascadian Farm and Muir Glen brands.

Naturally Boulder’s mission is to nurture start-up natural-foods companies and to promote Boulder as the epicenter of the natural-products movement, according to information on its website. It was started as an economic-development initiative in 2005, led by the city of Boulder and the Boulder Economic Council.

The 15-member board is a rotating who’s who of local business leaders from various industry-related backgrounds. For example, Radi also is senior vice president of Rudi’s Organic Bakery Inc.

Sponsors of Naturally Boulder events have included Celestial Seasonings Inc., a Boulder division of The Hain Celestial Group Inc. (Nasdaq: HAIN) based in Melville, New York, and Horizon Organic milk, a brand of WhiteWave Foods Co. (NYSE: WWAV) based in Broomfield.
Board members serve two-year terms. The board puts on a variety of events, including networking and educational programs.

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