Monday, October 8, 2007

Corporate Charity: Kroger Creates New Position To Strengthen Its Hunger Relief Efforts

Interesting news in the arena of corporate philanthropy...

Kroger Creates New Position To Strengthen Its Hunger Relief Efforts
Director of Retailer's Perishable Donations Partnership Links Stores With Local Food Banks To Get Fresh Food To Hungry People

CINCINNATI, Sept. 28 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- As part of its continuing leadership in helping to feed hungry people in our communities, The Kroger Co. today announced Kathleen Wright has been named Director of the Company's Perishable Donations Partnership (PDP).

Kroger's Perishable Donations Partnership is a Company-wide project that will increase the number of stores in the Kroger family that donate safe, perishable food to America's Second Harvest food banks that have the capacity to safely handle and distribute fresh food.

Today, Kroger donates food valued at $45 million annually through its existing programs. These donations are primarily dry grocery products and can goods. In addition, approximately 300 stores in the Kroger family donate eight million pounds of perishable food annually to local food banks in Michigan, Ohio, Utah and Washington.

Under Wright's leadership, Kroger's Perishable Donations Partnership program will expand to include the Company's family of stores. Kroger's goal is to donate 50 million pounds of nutritious, fresh food to food banks across the country through this expanded PDP program.

"This is an exciting opportunity to bring even more food and hope to hungry people," said Lynn Marmer, Kroger's Group Vice President of Corporate Affairs and a member of the board of directors of America's Second Harvest. "This initiative not only increases the amount of fresh food Kroger donates, it will help improve the diets of individuals and families who depend on hunger relief programs by giving food banks access to a variety of nutritious meats, fruits and vegetables."

Ms. Wright brings 25 years of experience in the grocery business to her new role. During her career, she has held leadership roles in food safety and store operations. Most recently, Ms. Wright served as Director of Food Safety for Kroger's Fred Meyer Division.

Ms. Marmer said the dedication of store managers and associates throughout Kroger's network and their close working relationship with local food banks are the keys to expanding this program in the communities where Kroger's customers and associates live and work.

Kroger has helped lead the fight against hunger in the United States for more than 25 years. Through the Company's "Bringing Hope to the Table" campaign, a nation-wide that encourages customers to purchase participating items in stores to support America's Second Harvest and local food banks, Kroger and its family of stores have raised $6 million in cash and $2 million in food in the past two years. Kroger plans to expand the program in 2008. In addition to food and monetary donations, Kroger's hunger relief efforts include volunteerism, fundraising, and board leadership with local food banks.

"We appreciate working with our partners at local food banks and look forward to their continued leadership as we grow this important program with their help," Ms. Marmer said.