BRAMPTON, ON, Nov. 22 /CNW/ - In a year when many families continue to
struggle to put food on their table, Loblaw Companies Limited (Loblaw)
corporate and participating franchise stores across Canada continue to
partner with local food banks to raise awareness, funds and food to
help those in need. Today Loblaw launched its 2010 Extra HelpingTM Holiday National Food Drive in Quebec, and will launch the food drive
on November 26 in the rest of the country, in support of local food
banks. Consumers are encouraged to donate non-perishable food items or
make a cash donation when they visit their local Loblaw retail store
and participating franchise location. Loblaw has set a goal to raise
$1.35 million and 1.2 million pounds of food across Canada this year.
According to Loblaw partner Food Banks Canada's 2010 HungerCount report more than 860,000 Canadians relied on assistance from food banks
in an average month, compared to close to 800,000 Canadians in 2009.
Additionally of the more than 860,000 Canadians accessing food banks
monthly, 38 per cent are children and youth. This represents an
increase of nine per cent in food bank usage compared to 2009 level of
usage. This year, every province saw an increase in food bank use and
more than half of all food banks experienced challenges providing
support to all families seeking help.
"Loblaw has a strong tradition of supporting the communities we serve.
As Canada's largest grocery retailer, we have a responsibility to help
in the fight against hunger and assist food banks in serving families
in need," says Peggy Hornell, senior director, Community Investment,
Loblaw Companies Limited. "As customers shop for their families this
holiday season, we encourage them to consider an extra item or to
donate a few dollars at check out to help provide food for someone in
To assist food banks in receiving the resources they require to help
those in need, one hundred per cent of food donations and the majority
of funds donated during the Company's food drive initiative this
holiday are donated to the local food bank partnered with the
individual Loblaw retail store and participating franchise while the
remaining donated funds supports provincial food bank programs to
ensure food banks in areas where Loblaw does not have a store benefit.
In addition to collecting food and funds, earlier this year, Loblaw made a corporate donation of $250,000 to Food Banks Canada's
National Food Sharing System, which works to acquire and share donated
food and consumer packaged goods to support food banks across the
country. Donated food is transported to hubs managed by provincial
food bank associations and in turn is distributed to local food banks
to utilize for their food programs that assist hungry families and
individuals in their communities.
"Many Canadians are still feeling the effects of the recession as food
banks across the country continue to see increases in people accessing
their services," says Katharine Schmidt, executive director, Food Banks
Canada. "This campaign and Loblaw's corporate donation are helping us
to provide nutritious meal options to children, seniors and individuals
at a time when the need has never been greater."
According to Food Banks Canada, the most needed non-perishable items
include: pasta products and rice; canned meats and fish; dry and canned
soups and stews; canned fruit and vegetables and flour. Other needed
items: breakfast cereal; peanut butter; canned/powered milk; fruit
juices; pasta sauce; beans and legumes; and baby food.
In some Loblaw corporate and franchise stores across Canada, shoppers
may see an Extra Helping™ logo featured on shelves in a variety of aisles, to help them quickly
and easily identify the most needed items. The logo will also be
featured on signs at store entrances, in-store displays, collection
bins and at checkout to encourage cash donations.
In Quebec, Loblaw has partnered with La Grande Guignolée des medias in
celebration of their 10 year anniversary. Since 2001, La Grande Guignolée des médias has collected $14 million and thousands of kilograms of food. Every
year for one month, as the holiday season approaches, this campaign
which culminates in a day-long roadside solicitation drive unites media
groups from across the province to raise food and funds to support
those in need. Until December 24th, customers in Quebec can make their donations to La Grande Guignolée des médias at their local Loblaws®, Provigo®, Maxi® and Maxi & Cie® stores.
Loblaw corporate and participating franchise stores taking part in the
2010 Extra Helping™ Holiday Food Drive are: Loblaws®, Loblaw GreatFood™, Fortinos®, Zehrs®,
Zehrs GreatFood™, Your Independent Grocer®, valu-mart®, nofrills®,
Extra Foods®, Dominion® (in Newfoundland and Labrador), Atlantic
SaveEasy®, Atlantic Superstore®, Provigo®, Maxi® and Maxi & Cie®, Real
Canadian Superstore®, and Real Canadian Wholesale Club® in Western
Loblaw is committed to being active in communities at the local,
regional and national levels and the company views this as an integral
component to the success of its business. One of Loblaw's commitments
to Corporate Responsibility is to Make a Positive Difference in Communities. The other Loblaw corporate social responsibility principles include Respect the
Environment, Source with Integrity, Reflect our Nation's Diversity and
Be a Great Place to Work.
About Food Banks Canada
Food Banks Canada is a national charitable organization representing the
food banks community across Canada. Its members and their respective
agencies serve approximately 85 per cent of people accessing
emergency food programs nationwide. Its mission is to meet the short
term need for food and find long-term solutions to reduce hunger.
Please visit www.foodbankscanada.ca for more information.
About Loblaw Companies Limited
Loblaw Companies Limited, a subsidiary of George Weston Limited, is
Canada's largest food distributor and a leading provider of drugstore,
general merchandise and financial products and services. Loblaw is one
of the largest private sector employers in Canada. With more than 1,000
corporate and franchised stores from coast to coast, Loblaw and its
franchisees employ over 138,000 full-time and part-time employees.
Through its portfolio of store formats, Loblaw is committed to
providing Canadians with a wide, growing and successful range of
products and services to meet the everyday household demands of
Canadian consumers. Loblaw is known for the quality, innovation and
value of its food offering. It offers Canada's strongest control
(private) label program, including the President's Choice® no name® and
Joe Fresh Style® brands. In addition, the Company makes available to
consumers President's Choice Financial® services and offers the PC®
points loyalty program.
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