September 1, 2010

Philip Morris International continues its long standing support of the University of Kentucky College of Agriculture through contributions to research, leadership and educational programs.

Within the past year, the company has contributed more than $350,000 to college projects. Several of these projects focus on developing management systems that would lower the amount of tobacco-specific nitrosamines in burley tobacco. Breeding programs and integrated disease management programs are also part of the research funding.

Among educational programs the company helps support are financial management and production programs that assist farmers in their decision making. Additionally, Philip Morris International is among the organizations helping fund the College of Agriculture’s Kentucky Agricultural Leadership Program. This 18-month program focuses on fine-tuning the leadership skills of farmers and agribusiness people, so they can be more actively engaged in policy decisions impacting the agricultural economy.

“We are grateful for the support and excited about the research opportunities Philip Morris helps to fund,” said Scott Smith, dean of the College of Agriculture. “These funds also help in our efforts to provide extensive leadership and management programs for farmers across the state ultimately enabling them to make better management decisions and to become leaders within their communities and beyond.”

Philip Morris International is an international tobacco company with products sold in approximately 160 countries.

“The company actively supports programs to advance tobacco production by working with agricultural experts at land-grant universities and independent farmers,” said Lee Ryan, director of agricultural programs at Philip Morris International Management S.A. “The goal is to help growers manage risk and improve quality and production.”

While tobacco production has dropped in Kentucky in recent years, the state still ranks second nationally in tobacco production, and the crop accounted for more than $350 million in farm sales in 2009.

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