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    Kroger Cal. Divs. Help Troops Keep in Contact

    The Kroger Co.’s Los Angeles-based Ralphs Grocery Co. and Food 4 Less divisions are currently raising funds to support military service members through the for the USOs (United Service Organizations) “Operation Phone Home” program.

    The Kroger Co.’s Los Angeles-based Ralphs Grocery Co. and Food 4 Less divisions are currently raising funds to support military service members through the for the USOs (United Service Organizations) “Operation Phone Home” program.

    The chains are inviting customers and team members to contribute to the program, which is being run by the chains’ nonprofit arms, The Ralphs and Food 4 Less Funds, by donating spare change in collection canisters at checkstands through Aug. 14, 2010.

    “We salute our troops and thank them for the sacrifices they make to protect us,” said Ralphs president Mike Donnelly.

    Added Bryan Kaltenbach, Food 4 Less president: “The USO's mission is important in letting active-duty military personnel know the citizens of the United States appreciate their efforts.”

    Established in 2003, USO Operation Phone Home delivers prepaid international phone cards to deployed service members at no charge. The phone cards are distributed through USO centers both overseas and Stateside, where they’re handed out to service members passing through, or delivered directly to military units. Since the program’s inception, over 2.2 million phone cards have been given out.

    Ralphs operates 257 supermarkets, and Food 4 Less operates 147 price-impact warehouse-format supermarkets under the banners Food 4 Less in Southern California, Nevada, Illinois and Indiana, and Foods Co in northern California.

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