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    Klein’s ShopRite Hands Out 150 Thanksgiving Meals

    8-unit retailer donates to needy customers in its two Baltimore locations

    By Katie Martin, Progressive Grocer

    Klein’s Family Markets, which operates nine ShopRite stores in Maryland, gave away 150 full Thanksgiving meals the Monday before Thanksgiving in its two Baltimore stores. The Parkville store donated 50 meals and Howard Park gave away 100 meals. Each meal included a turkey and all the traditional fixings; enough to feed eight to 10 people.

    “We are giving back to our communities this holiday season to help make it extra special for our neighbors in need,” said Marshall Klein, COO of Klein’s Family Markets. “We continue to be dedicated to the communities we serve.” Klein’s Family Markets covered the full cost of all donated meals.

    Potential recipients were nominated by churches, neighbors or other community members. Klein’s then randomly selected the names of those who would receive the meals; the nominations were kept separate by store. This was the second year Klein’s conducted the giveaway. Last year, the retailer gave away 50 meals in its Parkville store. Howard Park opened this summer.

    “It was a start,” said Sandy Brown, media relations spokesperson for Klein’s ShopRite. “Now we can gauge what the need is and ask ‘Do we increase it next year.’”

    Klein’s program is modeled after a program started by Brown’s ShopRite of Philadelphia more than 15 years ago. This year, Brown’s gave away 1,100 meals, but the retailer partners with Urban Affairs Coalition, a nonprofit in Philadelphia, which helps with funding and identifying those in need of the meals. UAC also handles delivery of the meal with recipients receiving a coupon for the turkey that they can redeem in any Brown’s ShopRite location.

    If Klein’s determines the need is bigger than it can support by itself, Brown indicates the grocer will look at partnering with vendors to grow the program. “It’s not easy to find people who are willing to help communities,” Brown said of the Klein family.

    Klein’s Family Markets, headquartered in Forest Hill, Md., was founded in 1925 by Maurice and Sarah Klein; Marshall Klein is the fourth generation of the family to run the business. ShopRite is the registered trademark of Wakefern Food Corp., a retailer-owned cooperative based in Keasbey, N.J. More than 250 ShopRite supermarkets are located in New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Connecticut, Delaware and Maryland, serving more than 6 million customers each week.

     

    By Katie Martin, Progressive Grocer
    • About Katie Martin Katie Martin is the editor-in-chief of Progressive Grocer Independent, in charge of the magazine’s daily operations, including visiting independent grocery stores for the Store of the Month features and working with industry experts to pass along best practices. Katie has more than 15 years of experience covering the retail food industry, previously on the bakery side with Modern Baking magazine, and enjoys covering small business owners and the joy, passion and drive they bring to their work.

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