It was on August 25, 1982, that Newman’s Own shipped its first bottles of salad dressing.
The late actor and philanthropist, Paul Newman, launched the company with his homemade recipe salad dressing, declaring that all profits would go to charity. Now, 35 years later, the company has more than 300 products with 100% of the profits continuing to help charities around the world.
“When Paul started Newman’s Own, some people wondered if the company could survive if it gave all its profits away,” said Bob Forrester, President and CEO of Newman’s Own Foundation and Executive Chairman of Newman’s Own. “Now, Newman’s Own is considered the exemplary philanthropic enterprise, which has helped thousands of nonprofit organizations, worldwide. In fact, Paul and Newman’s Own are often cited as the inspiration for other companies giving back, including several celebrities who started similar businesses.”
Over the 35 years, Newman’s Own has grown from a company with a single product, Olive Oil and Vinegar salad dressing, to a food and beverage company with products that include salad dressing, pasta sauce, frozen pizza, salsa, lemonade, cookies, snacks, and pet food. Products are sold around the world. In the first year following the launch of the company, there were 30 charitable organizations that received funding. Now, Newman's Own Foundation supports about 600 grantees each year. To date, more than $495 million has been donated to charitable purposes.
In recognition of 35 years of giving it all away, Newman’s Own Foundation announced that it will award grants of $35,000 to 15 of the nonprofit organizations that were originally funded and have been supported for over three decades. These grants are part of the approximately $30 million that is being donated this year alone by Newman’s Own Foundation and Newman’s Own.
Newman’s Own Foundation was founded by Paul Newman in 2005 to continue his philanthropic legacy of donating all net profits and royalties from the sale of Newman’s Own products to charity. The organization continues to fulfill Newman’s commitment of helping to make our world a better place. There are four primary focus areas for giving: encouraging philanthropy, children with life-limiting conditions, empowerment, and nutrition.
The impact of this philanthropy is best summarized with just a few examples from the thousands of organizations and programs that have benefited from funding: SeriousFun Children’s Network provides a free camp experience for children with life-limiting medical conditions through their camps and programs around the world; various military nonprofits help wounded warriors and their families by empowering them to overcome extraordinary circumstances; Wholesome Wave and various nutrition grantees help children and families in underserved communities with better access to fresh food and nutrition education; SHOFCO helps residents of one of Africa’s largest slums experience hope through education, healthcare, and clean water.
“Paul Newman wanted to help make the world a better place, and he said, ‘What could be better than to hold out your hand to those who are less fortunate?’” recalled Forrester. “He has certainly made a difference with the philanthropic model of Newman’s Own, which has helped thousands of organizations and millions of people,” he added. “We are privileged to continue his extraordinary mission.”
The 15 nonprofit organizations that will receive grants in this round of funding to recognize the 35th anniversary include the following:
· The Actors Studio – New York, NY
· Amref Health Africa – New York, NY
· Carver Foundation of Norwalk – Norwalk, CT
· Central Park Conservancy – New York, NY
· CLASP Homes – Westport, CT
· Happiness is Camping – Blairstown, NJ
· Homes with Hope – Westport, CT
· Maritime Aquarium of Norwalk – Norwalk, CT
· New York Foundling Hospital – New York, NY
· Norwalk Hospital – Norwalk, CT
· Save the Children – Fairfield, CT
· Westport Historical Society – Westport, CT
· Westport Library – Westport, CT
· Westport Volunteer EMS – Westport, CT
· Yale School of Drama – New Haven, CT
Additional grants will continue to be made through the remainder of the year.