Dole Food Company, Inc. (NYSE:DOL) Thursday (8 February) announced the promotion of Lawrence A. Kern to President and Chief Operating Officer of the company, reporting directly to David H. Murdock, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. Mr. Kern has also been elected to the company’s Board of Directors.

Mr. Kern joined Dole in 1993. He has most recently been responsible for Dole’s worldwide fresh vegetables and non-tropical fresh fruit operations. He has directed major strategic restructurings of those businesses, which have led to record levels of market share and profitability.

David H. Murdock stated: “Larry’s proven business leadership will now be expanded to encompass all of our global operations. I am confident that what he has been able to accomplish within the fresh vegetables and non-tropical fresh fruit operations will now be carried over to all of our other businesses. I look forward to working closely with Larry in his new assignment.”

David A. DeLorenzo will become Vice Chairman of the Board of Directors where he will have a significant role in guiding strategic initiatives aimed at enhancing shareholder value. David joined the company in 1970 and for the last ten years, has been president and chief operating officer.

Dole Food Company, Inc., with 2000 revenues of $4.8 billion, is the world’s largest producer and marketer of high-quality fresh fruit, fresh vegetables and fresh-cut flowers, and markets a growing line of packaged foods.

This release contains forward-looking statements based on current expectations that involve a number of risks and uncertainties. Forward-looking statements, which are based on management’s current expectations, are generally identifiable by the use of terms such as “will,” and similar expressions. The potential risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those expressed or implied herein include weather-related phenomena; market responses to industry volume pressures; product and raw materials supplies and pricing; changes in interest and currency exchange rates; economic crises in developing countries; and quotas, tariffs and other governmental actions. Further information on the factors that could affect Dole’s financial results is included in its SEC filings, including its Annual Report on Form 10-K.

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