(Oct. 3, 2:00 p.m.) A retail program committed to breast cancer prevention and awareness will be featured in the produce aisles of three grocery store chains around the country in October.

“(Breast cancer awareness) was something you’d hear about all the time and three years ago, and the founder of our company felt this was something we should get more involved with,” said Kimberly Rogers, retail program supervisor for Rocklin, Calif.-based Consumer Effects International, which oversees the program.

As a result, Consumer Effects developed the Sacramento, Calif.-based Pink Ribbon Produce program, which raises money for the Susan G. Komen for the Cure Foundation, the nation’s leading breast cancer charity, Rogers said.

“It’s a co-marketing program,” Rogers said. “We go in and get retailers who want to participate and then we go and talk to their produce suppliers and they come together to support this in-store.”

The program starts Oct. 5. Pink Ribbon Produce signs and posters will appear Harris Teeter, Meijer and Price Chopper stores, encouraging shoppers to purchase produce from Pink Ribbon partners, Rogers said.

More than 30 grower-shippers and produce marketers are involved in the program.

The program, now in its third year, has raised more than $81,000 for the cancer awareness group, Rogers said.

With a minimum guaranteed donation of $15,000 this year, the Pink Ribbon program is unique, because the majority of funds raised stay in the communities where they were raised, Rogers said.

“Seventy-five percent of the money stays with that affiliate office for things like treatment options at local hospitals, (and) 25% goes to research,” Rogers said. “Local affiliates are supplying money for things like more mammogram services, so the money is directly benefiting each community.”