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Giant Food LLC has kicked off its 23rd annual “Good Neighbor Food and Funds Drive" to help five regional food banks provide for needy community members. Running through Nov. 28 at all of the Ahold USA division’s stores, the program enables customers to provide aid as well by making a monetary contribution of $1, $5 or $10 to their grocery bills at checkout or donating nonperishable food items at their local Giant stores.
At most Giant Food stores, customers can purchase a pre-packed reusable grocery bag filled with such nonperishable items as two cans of Giant Specialty Beans, two cans of Starkist Chunk Light Tuna, one 28-ounce can of Giant Tomatoes and one box of Pasta Roni, for $5. In Baltimore-area locations, shoppers can buy a special Ravens reusable tailgate bag for $5, and Giant will donate several items to the in-store Good Neighbor Food and Funds Drive collection to go to the Maryland Food Bank.
"Giant is committed to alleviating hunger in our community throughout the year, and we have a long history of raising awareness about hunger during the holiday months,” said Jamie Miller, Giant Food manager of public and community relations. “Through the Good Neighbor Food and Funds Drive, we are working to make a difference and helping people in our region keep food on their tables. In our 23rd year, the Good Neighbor Food and Funds Drive brings Giant and the community together in an effort to drive away hunger in our community.”
Following last year’s program, the grocer donated a combined $310,000 to the Capital Area Food Bank, Maryland Food Bank, Fredericksburg Area Food Bank, Food Bank of Delaware, and the Blue Ridge Area Food Bank.
The 2010 drive is the first of several Giant initiatives to help fight hunger in the region this holiday season. On Nov. 13 and Nov. 14, Giant Food will also host its 12th annual “Stuff-A-Bus” event at White Marsh and Ellicott City, Md., stores to help the Maryland Food Bank, and the ninth annual Giant Stuff-A-Truck will take place at four Washington-area stores on Dec. 10 to benefit the Capital Area Food Bank.
During Hunger Action Month this past September, Giant Foode hosted a community food drive with the Frederick Keys, the Orioles’ minor-league baseball affiliate, at the team’s stadium to help the Frederick Food Bank and Stuff-A-Truck events at the banner’s two Charlottesville, Va., stores to benefit the Blue Ridge Area Food Bank. Additionally, Giant joined forces with Unilever to host Stuff-A-Truck events in Fredericksburg, Va., and Bear, Del., in support of the Fredericksburg Area Food Bank and Food Bank of Delaware, respectively. As a result of these initiatives, more than 10,000 pounds of food was donated to help eradicate hunger in the region.
Based in Landover, Md., Giant Food operates 179 supermarkets in Virginia, Maryland, Delaware and the District of Columbia, and employs about 22,000 associates. Included within the 179 stores are 163 full-service pharmacies.