Lifeway Foods Inc., a Morton Grove, Ill.-based supplier of kefir and fermented probiotic products to support the microbiome, said it continues to stand with the people of Ukraine by expanding humanitarian relief efforts to support those in need. Building on the company's ongoing efforts, Lifeway Foods will release a specially marked charity relief bottle of Lifeway's Plain whole milk kefir; 100% of profits will go toward Ukrainian humanitarian aid, with a commitment of up to $1 million.
Lifeway Foods also has spearheaded several fundraisers, including the recent Chicago Chefs Cook for Ukraine presented by Lifeway, which raised $700,000 for World Central Kitchen, founded by Chef José Andrés. The fundraiser brought together 73 of Chicago's top chefs for a tasting event to raise funds for Ukrainian relief. Lifeway Foods said it is also currently working with the consulate general of Ukraine in Chicago, U.S.-Ukraine logistics companies, local European consulates, and countless volunteers to get vital donations to Ukraine.
"Lifeway was founded with a mission to bring an ancient Slavic superfood, kefir, to the U.S.,” said Julie Smolyansky, CEO of Lifeway Foods, herself a former refugee from Kyiv. “It afforded my family the opportunity to participate in the American dream, fulfill entrepreneurial aspirations and pursue basic human freedoms.
"We as a company are devoted and committed to supporting humanitarian efforts and providing aid for those in need, including relatives of Lifeway employees that have been directly impacted,” she continued. “The courage of the Ukrainian people is an inspiration to us all, and we are proud to support those impacted as long as necessary to help recover and restore wholeness."
The specially marked product is anticipated to be available beginning in June.
"We are grateful for our many retail and distribution partners for their enthusiastic response in bringing this special product to shelves across the United States and for their commitment to stand with the people of Ukraine," said Smolyansky.
For information about Lifeway Food's efforts or to donate to Ukrainian relief, visit https://lifewaykefir.com/ukraine.