Hansen, Senate honor local food processor and McDonald’s for nutritious contribution

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Peterson Farms supplies most of the apples for ‘Happy Meals’ sold in state

LANSING, Mich. — Sen. Goeff Hansen on Thursday honored an Oceana County food processor and a McDonald’s franchise owner who have made significant contributions to state agriculture and helped McDonald’s restaurants reach an important milestone.

Peterson Farms, headed by fourth-generation fruit-grower Earl Peterson, has supplied most of the apples for the Happy Meals McDonald’s sells in Michigan.

“Since first introducing Apple Dippers in 2004, McDonald’s USA has served more than two billion sliced apple packages across the country,” said Hansen, R-Hart. “For some perspective, two billion packages is equal to providing every child in America under the age of 12 with 40 packages of apple slices.

“McDonald’s has purchased well over 19 million pounds of Michigan apples since 2004. The majority have come from Peterson Farms, their largest supplier in Michigan and only one of six suppliers nationwide.”

Hansen honored Earl Peterson; his daughter Sarah Schlukebir, Peterson Farms’ vice president of sales and marketing; Matthew Schulz, franchise owner of McDonald’s restaurants in Hart and Ludington; and Matthew’s wife, Lori Schulz.

“I congratulate you all for reaching this milestone,” Hansen said. “Thank you for providing this nutritious food and for contributing so much to Michigan’s agriculture economy.”

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Photo caption: Sen. Goeff Hansen, R-Hart, on Thursday honored Peterson Farms of Oceana County and McDonald’s USA for serving more than two billion sliced apple packages across the country. Pictured with Hansen are, from left: Sarah Schlukebir, vice president of sales and marketing for Peterson Farms; Earl Peterson, owner and CEO of Peterson Farms; Lori Schulz; and Matthew Schulz, Lori’s husband and franchise owner of McDonald’s restaurants in Hart and Ludington.