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CARLISLE, Pa. -- Since the start of the year, Giant Food Stores, LLC and Tops Markets together have raised more than $717,000 toward the goal of helping to wipe out hunger in the communities surrounding their stores.
Each chain begins a donation program at the checkout during the first quarter of the year to raise contributions to combat hunger.
"As a provider of food to our local communities, [we feel] it's very important to focus on those in our operating areas that are in need," noted Giant's c.e.o., Tony Schiano. "We kicked off this year with a bang, and we hope to build on this momentum for the rest of 2006 in continuing to help our local food banks fulfill their own missions of providing food to those who call for it most."
Customers and associates at Giant Food Stores together donated $252,513 to local food banks through the banner's "Bag Hunger" campaign. Customers were given the opportunity to donate $1 at the register. The monies raised in each individual store were in turn given directly to that community's local food bank.
Tops raised $285,313 through its "Check Out Hunger" campaign at locations in New York and Pennsylvania. Check Out Hunger is a national, annual program run by food retailers to help raise money for local food banks. The program is particularly crucial because donations to food banks decline sharply after the holiday season, but the necessity of feed the needy goes on. In Tops' Northeast Ohio markets, $179,580 was donated to regional food banks through the "Harvest for Hunger" program, part of the national Second Harvest program benefiting regional food banks serving multi-county areas.
Both Giant and Tops raise money and contribute product to local and regional food banks year-round. Last year a total of $10.3 million was donated to help the hungry in Pennsylvania, New York, northeast Ohio, Maryland, Virginia, and West Virginia.
Giant Food Stores, LLC, one of four retail-operating companies under Ahold USA, operates 103 stores as Giant Food Stores, 123 stores as Tops Markets, and 25 stores as Martin's Food Markets. With nearly 40,000 associates, Giant serves a six-state market area.