Real Canadian Superstore locations and Winnipeg Harvest are pleased to participate in Food Banks Canada's new Retail Food program to help fight hunger

WINNIPEG, March 7, 2013 /CNW/ - TSX: L: - Building on the Extra Helping™ Food Drive program, Real Canadian Superstore® locations and Winnipeg Harvest are pleased to join efforts in a new initiative to help fight hunger by participating in Food Banks Canada's new Retail Food program. The program will provide fresh food (bakery, meat and produce) to local food banks in Winnipeg.

Close to 63,000 Manitobans rely on the assistance provided by food banks each month, half of who are children - according to Food Banks Canada's annual HungerCount Survey.

"Sadly, the need in our communities continues to grow. This program will better enable us to serve our clients with a consistent flow of fresh food," says Kate Brenner, director, Winnipeg Harvest. "We thank the Real Canadian Superstore® team for working with us on this initiative and for being such a good partner to us for many years."

With this new program, Real Canadian Superstore® locations, in addition to their ongoing donation of non-perishable food, will work with Winnipeg Harvest to set aside a mix of fresh food, depending on product assortment and availability.

"Our grocery stores are proud to be part of the communities we serve and we are pleased to have been able to develop an arrangement that helps to increase the availability of fresh, quality food to those in need," says Al Jasper, vice-president, Manitoba operations, Real Canadian Superstore® & Extra Foods®, Loblaw Companies Limited.

In 2012, Loblaw banner stores in Manitoba raised $65,000 and 27,000 pounds food donated by customers and colleagues during food drives held at Real Canadian Superstore®, Extra Foods®, and Wholesale Club™ stores.

"We are very excited and thrilled to be a part of this progressive approach to help meet the needs of local and provincial food banks. Across the country, Loblaw banner stores will participate in the Food Retail program in Winnipeg, Montreal, Halifax, Calgary and Vancouver," says Peggy Hornell, senior director, Community Investment, Loblaw Companies Limited.

Nationally, Loblaw banner stores have a long history of supporting food banks in their local communities. Since the launch of the Extra Helping™ Food Drive campaign in 2009, Loblaw has raised over $5.6 million in cash donations and 6.3 million pounds of food. Additionally, it has donated $1.125 million corporately.

The 2013 Extra Helping™ Spring Food Drive kicks off on April 19, 2013, at Real Canadian Superstore®, Extra Foods®, and Wholesale Club™ stores in communities across Manitoba.

About Loblaw Companies Limited
Loblaw Companies Limited, a subsidiary of George Weston Limited, is Canada's largest food retailer 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 more than 134,000 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 unique President's Choice®, no name® and Joe Fresh® brands. In addition, the Company makes available to consumers President's Choice Financial® services and offers the PC® points loyalty program.

SOURCE: Loblaw Companies Limited

For further information:

Loblaw Public Relations Department
(905) 459-2500 or pr@loblaw.ca

Chris Albi
Communications Coordinator
Winnipeg Harvest
Cell (204) 229-9660
media@winnipegharvest.org


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