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CINCINNATI -- The Kroger Co. here was named "Grocery Retailer of the Year" for the third time in the past five years, by America's Second Harvest, the nation's food bank network.
Kroger and its retail divisions were honored for their outstanding support of America's Second Harvest food banks across the country. Among the criteria used by the selection committee were product donations, technical assistance, funding, food drives, and volunteer efforts. Food bank members of the America's Second Harvest Network nominated Kroger for the award.
Kroger's retail divisions work with more than 40 regional food banks around the country that are affiliated with Second Harvest, which said the chain consistently ranks as one of the largest retail contributors of food and grocery products to the non-profit organization.
In the past five years, Kroger has provided nearly 120 million pounds of product -- valued at roughly $160 million -- to the America's Second Harvest Network.
"Kroger provides tremendous support to our Network. They have a genuine commitment to help us feed millions of Americans who are hungry or at risk of hunger," said Bob Forney, president and c.e.o. of America's Second Harvest. "Their contributions to us -- including donations of product, funds and food drives -- cannot be overstated."
Said David B. Dillon, Kroger chairman and c.e.o., "Our associates are involved with food banks in almost every community where we operate. They are the reason why America's Second Harvest food banks recognized Kroger as the leading retail partner in their efforts to feed hungry children, families and seniors."
In recent years, Kroger has expanded its partnership with America's Second Harvest through the "grocery alliance" program. Under the program, Kroger retail divisions work more closely with food banks and food-rescue organizations in their local communities to generate greater awareness of hunger relief programs, share best practices in raising food donations, and seek new donation opportunities through a variety of activities.