Get fresh with more than 700 Canadian farmers at Loblaw stores

    Largest Purchaser of Canadian fruits and vegetables brings fresh Grown
    Close to Home(TM) produce to Canadians from coast-to-coast

    TORONTO, Aug. 13 /CNW/ - From British Columbia's plump and juicy
raspberries, to the firm, sweet cantaloupes of Ontario and Quebec's succulent
berries - fruits and vegetables from across Canada are arriving in Loblaw
store produce sections all over the country - and they're best enjoyed in
their natural form: naked. Fresh quality produce and taste means minimal
preparation for maximum flavour. This season, it's easy for Canadians to get
"fresh" with Canadian grown produce as Loblaw strengthens its partnerships
with Canada's growers. As a proudly Canadian company, Loblaw is committed to
supporting local growers and the Canadian economy and with the abundance of
the growing season now in-store, it's the perfect time for shoppers to get
fresh with their Canadian grown offerings and dive into tempting, tasty
produce that doesn't need dressing up.
    Now in its second year, the Loblaw Grown Close to Home(TM) program offers
Canadians up to 40 per cent of produce found in Loblaw stores sourced from
Canadian growers during the peak season. As part of its Corporate Social
Responsibility (CSR) commitment to Source with Integrity(1) Loblaw partners
with over 700 growers across Canada - with more than 100 new vendor
relationships established during the past year alone. The result is a range of
fresh produce sourced from Canadian farms that puts Canada's growers
front-and-centre during the peak of harvest season.
    "We work closely with our dedicated Canadian growers to bring produce
that's flavourful, fresh, and offers great quality for our customers," says
Mike Venton, Senior Vice President, Produce, Loblaw Companies Ltd. "With some
of our grower relationships spanning over 40 years, Loblaw is committed to
working with Canadian farmers to finding ways to bring Canadians the
exceptional flavours of produce picked at its peak that they look forward to
this time of year."
    With plenty of succulent, juicy fruit and crisp, crunchy vegetables at
harvest, Canadians are seduced every season by home-grown produce. Loblaw
satisfies this craving with approximately 27 per cent of its year-round
produce purchases being home grown. In 2008, Loblaw purchased more than
$629-million worth of Canadian produce. This year, with an even bigger
purchase, Canadians can enjoy the great variety of produce offered in Loblaw
stores easily by viewing in-store signage that helps shoppers identify
highlighted Grown Close To Home items, by region, and where the product
originates from. Lovers of Canadian grown produce can now easily enjoy
barely-dressed fruits and vegetables fresh from Canadian farms coast-to-coast.

    2009 Key Produce Items:


    -   Peppers, Cauliflower, Cantaloupe, Corn, Tomatoes, Cucumber, Peaches,
        Watermelon, Berries


    -   Cantaloupe, Hot House Tomatoes, Cauliflower, Cucumber, Berries, Corn,
        Onions, Carrots, Cabbage, Potatoes


    -   Berries, Cherries, Peppers, Tomato, Cauliflower, Cucumber


    -   Berries, Cantaloupe, Peppers, Savoura Tomatoes (particular brand of
        tomato known for its juiciness and red colour), Cucumber,
        Cauliflower, Leeks, Potatoes, Onions, Broccoli, Lettuce, Romaine

    Canadian produce can be conveniently found at Loblaw banners across
Canada, including Loblaws, Loblaw Great Food, Zehrs, Zehrs Great Food,
Fortinos, Real Canadian Superstore, Loblaw Superstore, valu-mart, Your
Independent Grocer, Atlantic Superstore, Maxi, Maxi & Cie, no frills, Provigo,
Extra Foods and more. Produce availability and pricing may vary by banner and
region. For more information, visit

    1 -

    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
139,000 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(R), no name(R) and Joe
Fresh Style(R) brands. In addition, the Company makes available to consumers
President's Choice Financial(R) services and offers the PC(R) Points loyalty

For further information:

For further information: or to arrange an interview with a spokesperson,
please contact: MS&L: Diane Sidik, P: (416) 847-1316, E:; Natalie Little, P: (416) 847-1318, E:

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