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Smithfield Foods Establishes New Executive Position of Chief People Officer

SMITHFIELD, Va., April 22, 2015 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Smithfield Foods, Inc. announced that it has created a new executive position of 'chief people officer' that will focus on developing and implementing the company's strategy to enhance the work environment and offer employees rewarding career paths.

"The first pillar of our company is that 'we will be people oriented.' We recognize that our employees are our number one resource, and we are committed to making Smithfield an employer of choice," said C. Larry Pope, Smithfield's president and chief executive officer, in announcing the new position.

Smithfield has appointed Mark Garrett, who joined the company in 2005, as chief people officer. He will be jointly based in Kansas City, Missouri, and Smithfield, Virginia, but will be responsible for employee development at all of Smithfield's locations. Garrett will report to Dennis Treacy, Smithfield's executive vice president and chief sustainability officer.

In overseeing the company's people strategy, Pope pointed out that Garrett will be responsible for programs that "drive continuous improvement of the work environment across all Smithfield operations. He will work closely with employees throughout our entire organization, overseeing employee development, employee engagement and recognition programs, and diversity and inclusion initiatives, among other efforts."

"I'm excited about the programs and initiatives that Mark will spearhead to make Smithfield Foods a more dynamic workplace with rewarding career paths," Pope said. "Our focus is on making our employees' daily work more enjoyable and their careers more successful."

Smithfield's recent organizational realignment has unified all its independent operating companies, brands and marketing under one corporate umbrella with continued emphasis on growing its brands and people.

About Smithfield Foods

Smithfield Foods is a $15 billion global food company and the world's largest pork processor and hog producer. In the United States, the company is also the leader in numerous packaged meats categories with popular brands including Smithfield®, Eckrich®, Farmland®, Armour®, Cook's®, John Morrell®, Gwaltney®, Nathan's Famous®, Kretschmar®, Margherita®, Curly's®, Carando® and Healthy Ones®. Smithfield Foods is committed to providing good food in a responsible way and maintains robust animal care, community involvement, employee safety, environmental and food safety and quality programs. For more information, visit www.smithfieldfoods.com and www.smithfieldcommitments.com.

CONTACT: Kathleen Kirkham Smithfield Foods, Inc. (757) 365-1965 kathleenkirkham@smithfieldfoods.com

Source:Smithfield Foods, Inc.