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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 3, 2012

I Love Illinois Products Promo Begins Feb. 10
Valentine-themed Illinois products and wine to be highlighted during contest

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. – To increase awareness about Illinois food products this Valentine’s season, the Illinois Department of Agriculture will hold its first ever “I Love Illinois Products!” contest Feb. 10 - 14.  A winner will be selected randomly each day from among the department’s Facebook and Twitter fans.  Winners will receive a Valentine-themed Illinois product and a bottle of wine.

“Our hope is contests like this will raise awareness of the many great Illinois food products available to the public,” Acting Agriculture Director H.W. Devlin said. “I want to encourage consumers, whenever possible, to buy locally and support Illinois businesses.  Many of the companies taking part in this promotion also will attend our upcoming Illinois Products Expo, a department-sponsored food show March 3 - 4 in the Orr Building on the Illinois State Fairgrounds, so make plans to come out and sample their offerings then, too.”

To be eligible for the contest, individuals must join the department’s Facebook page or follow the agency on Twitter.  One fan will be selected daily. Individuals must be 21 years old to win gifts donated by Illinois wine companies.

Prizes for the contest are being provided by the following Illinois companies and wineries:
 
Afterthought Farms, Owaneco – homemade therapeutic soaps and lotions
August Hill Winery, Utica – one bottle of Mardi Gras
Buds-N-Bloom, Decatur – two dozen fresh roses
Hopewell Winery, Rockport – one bottle of Peach
In Good Taste, Taylorville – assorted box of homemade Valentine’s Day candy
Julie’s Corner Store, Lacon – one pound Valentine heart filled with fresh fudge
Pease’s Candy, Springfield – assorted box of homemade Valentine’s Day candy
Shawnee Winery, Vienna – one bottle of Shawnee Blush
Sleepy Creek Vineyards, Fairmount – one bottle of Dreamer
Vila Marie Winery, Godfrey – one bottle of Sugar Loaf White

To sign up for the “I Love Illinois Products!” contest, please visit and “like” the Department of Agriculture’s Facebook page at www.facebook.com/IllinoisDepartmentofAgriculture or register to follow the department’s Twitter account at https://twitter.com/#!/ILAgMarkets.

More information about the Illinois Products Expo is available online at www.agr.state.il.us/marketing/expo.  Questions should be directed to Jennifer Tirey, bureau chief of Marketing, Promotion and Grants at (217) 782-8146.



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