In partnership with the National Forest Foundation, gummy brand Black Forest will donate $500,000 to help plant 1.5 million trees across U.S. forests that have been impacted by wildfires by the end of 2022.
In celebration of National Love a Tree Day on May 16, Black Forest is inviting fans to continue supporting the cause by building the first-ever Virtual National Forest on Instagram. Now through June 30, fans can help rebuild U.S. forests from home by simply uploading a new photo or commenting on any photo of a tree on their social channels using the bear-heart-tree emoji hashtag, and their contribution will be added to the Virtual National Forest.
Users can access the Virtual National Forest by searching the bear-heart-tree hashtag on Instagram. For every hashtag used during this time, Black Forest will donate $1 (up to $50,000) to the cause, in addition to its $500,000 donation in 2020. Black Forest has also canceled its TV advertising campaign and is instead donating that production budget to the important cause.
"As a brand, Black Forest celebrates what's real — from our ingredients to our partners and the forests that we're helping to rebuild,” said Kate Adams, brand marketing director of Black Forest at Ferrara. “Forests are part of our brand's founding story, namesake and core mission, and we are thrilled to continue our partnership with the National Forest Foundation to ensure our forests will be here for future generations to enjoy. With the Bear Heart Tree campaign, we're excited to give fans a fun way to get involved in our mission from the comfort and safety of their homes."
To further grow the Virtual National Forest, Black Forest has partnered with more than 20 nature enthusiasts across the country, who share the brand's passion for exploring and experiencing the outdoors to upload their photos, which began on Arbor Day (April 24). On National Love a Tree Day, they will champion the cause by encouraging fans to help grow the Virtual National Forest and, in turn, rebuild our nation's real forests. Fans can also spot the bear-heart-tree hashtag and National Forest Foundation logo on Black Forest's gummy bear packaging as a call to consumers to support the cause.
This year marks a continuation of Black Forest's 2019 commitment to the NFF through which the brand donated $100,000 to plant 100,000 trees across U.S. National Forests impacted by wildfires. Together, Black Forest and the National Forest Foundation are on a mission to create a beautiful mosaic of trees and nature photos fans can enjoy, share and celebrate online in anticipation of the 1.5 million new trees to be planted in the near future.
"We believe our National Forests are important because these lands are an American treasure and are vital to the health of our communities,” said Mary Mitsos, National Forest Foundation President & CEO. ‘They provide places for families to connect and rediscover nature. Through our partnership with Black Forest, we are doing just that—planting trees to strengthen forests, so that communities can create more memories outside with nature."
Reforestation projects supported by this partnership are coordinated through the U.S. Forest Service, which assists in planting native trees through a time tested, science-based approach.