SMITHFIELD, Va., Oct. 25, 2012 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Once again, Smithfield Foods (NYSE:SFD) has achieved a dramatic improvement in Newsweek magazine's latest ranking of the environmental performance of America's 500 largest public companies, moving past 89 other companies from its 2011 position.

In Newsweek's 2012 ranking, Smithfield Foods finished 328th among the 500 largest U.S. businesses, compared to the company's 417th "green ranking" by Newsweek one year ago. In 2011, Smithfield also climbed 68 positions from its 2010 finish, demonstrating continued improvement.

"Our employees deserve the accolade for working very hard every day to achieve our company's sustainability goals, which has once again helped us improve our environmental standing among top 500 companies," said C. Larry Pope, president and chief executive officer at Smithfield Foods.

"Of course, it almost goes without saying that we will never be satisfied until we reach the top of Newsweek's list. We're always looking to improve because our ultimate goal is to be the most socially responsible company in our industry," he added.

In compiling its annual list of the top environmental performers, Newsweek magazine compares environmental footprints, reporting practices and management performance, including policies, initiatives and controversies, of the 500 largest U.S. companies. Newsweek teamed up with two leading environmental research organizations, Trucost and Sustainalytics, to develop the comprehensive rankings.

About Smithfield Foods

Smithfield Foods is a $13 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®, Gwaltney®, John Morrell®, Kretschmar®, Curly's®, Carando®, Margherita®, 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 and

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Keira Lombardo
Smithfield Foods, Inc.
(757) 365-3050