Thanks Alberta! Your donations helped feed thousands of hungry families across the province last year

The 2013 Extra Helping™ Spring Food Drive kicks off on April 19

CALGARY, Feb. 13, 2013 /CNW/ - Alberta food banks got a big boost last year thanks to the $220,000 and 225,000 pounds food donated by customers and colleagues during food drives held at Real Canadian Superstore®, nofrills®, Extra Foods®, and Wholesale Club™ stores.

"Food banks in Alberta assist an average of nearly 55,000 individuals each month, 44 per cent of who are children," says Jessi Evanoff with the Alberta Food Bank Network Association. "The donations collected through the annual spring and holiday campaigns held at these stores go a long way to helping us keep our shelves stocked all year long."

Across Canada, Loblaw banner stores like Loblaws®, Loblaw great food®, Fortinos®, Zehrs Markets®, Zehrs Great Food™, Your Independent Grocer®, valu-mart®, Real Canadian Superstore®, Extra Foods®, Atlantic Superstore®, Provigo® and nofrills® raised $1.8 million and 1.47 million pounds of food for local food banks in 2012. Thanks to customers' generosity and support, donations in 2012 exceeded those of 2011.

Loblaw grocery stores have a long history of supporting food banks in their local communities. In 2009, the Company rebranded their efforts to the Extra Helping™ Food Drive campaign, a united, national campaign in an effort to reduce hunger. Since then, Loblaw stores have raised more than $5.4 million and more than 5.7 million pounds of food to support local food banks.

"Loblaw is committed to fighting hunger across Canada and we want to express our utmost gratitude to our customers for sharing our dedication to this cause and for their generosity in helping to feed families in local communities," says Peggy Hornell, senior director, Community Investment, Loblaw Companies Limited.

In addition, through annual corporate donations, Loblaw Companies Limited has contributed $1.125 million to date to Food Banks Canada in support of their National Food Sharing Program.

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

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 135,000 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

Jessi Evanoff
Coordinator, Alberta Food Bank Network Association
(780) 459-4598

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