DOLE FRESH VEGETABLE SOLEDAD FACILITY EARNS CALIFORNIA VOLUNTARY PROGRAM (CAL/VPP) DESIGNATION FROM CAL/OSHA
WESTLAKE VILLAGE, Calif. - August 15, 2006
Dole Food Company, Inc. announces that after a long and rigorous process, the Dole Fresh Vegetables salad production facility in Soledad became the first produce company, and only the 37th company in California to be approved as a Cal/STAR in the Division of Occupational Safety and Health's Voluntary Protection Program (Cal/VPP).
The Cal/VPP recognizes employers and their employees who have implemented safety and health systems that effectively prevent and control occupational hazards. These systems go beyond ensuring that minimal Cal/OSHA standards are met by providing the best feasible protection at that site.
Dole's achievement now provides them state and national recognition along with exemption from Cal/OSHA programmed inspections for three years.
The application was produced under the direction of Dole Director of Manufacturing West, Sheila Lee and Manager of Safety, Alfonso Orozco along with a Dole VPP committee consisting of plant management and hourly employees. This achievement covered reporting on such issues as injury and illness rates compared to industry within the past three years, management commitment to safety goals, contract safety, hazard assessment, the facility's medical and industrial hygiene program, specific safety programs and safety training, rules, and work procedures, training and more.
"We continue to be proud of the honors Soledad receives as a cutting-edge, quality facility that provides the safest workplace possible for our employees," said Eric Schwartz, president of Dole Fresh Vegetables. "The time and effort it took to earn this was tremendous and I applaud the entire team at our Soledad facility for achieving this success."
The Dole Soledad facility has previously received the National Safety Council Excellence Achievement Awards in the years 2001, 2002, and 2003, was named Food Plant of the Year - Refrigerated Frozen Food Magazine for 2004, and new Plant of the Year-Food Engineering Magazine for 1995.
Dole Food Company, Inc., with 2005 revenues of $5.5 billion, is the world's largest producer and marketer of high-quality fresh fruit, fresh vegetables and fresh-cut flowers. Dole markets a growing line of packaged and frozen foods and is a produce industry leader in nutrition education and research.
This release contains "forward-looking statements," within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 that involve a number of risks and uncertainties. Forward looking statements, which are based on management's current expectations, are generally identifiable by the use of terms such as "may," "will," "expects," "believes," "intends" and similar expressions. The potential risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those expressed or implied herein include weather-related phenomena; market responses to industry volume pressures; product and raw materials supplies and pricing; electrical power supply and pricing; changes in interest and currency exchange rates; economic crises and security risks in developing countries; international conflict; and quotas, tariffs and other governmental actions. Further information on the factors that could affect Dole's financial results is included in its SEC filings, including its Annual Report on Form 10-K.