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    Safeway Celebrates New Product Line with World's Longest Picnic Table

    Its exclusive Open Nature line features 100 percent natural products

    Safeway, Inc. made the Guinness Book of World Records with the launch of its Open Nature line of 100 percent natural products available exclusively at Safeway.

    For the launch, the grocer this past Saturday (National Picnic Day) worked with Food Network chef Tyler Florence to cook up a spread using the line’s products on a picnic table spanning the length of a football field -- and set the Guinness World Record for Longest Picnic Table.

    Determined by a Guinness World Records Official, the record was set at 12:45 p.m. PST on June 18, 2011 with the table measuring a total of 305-feet. During the launch, Florence demonstrated recipes for picnic guests using Safeway's Open Nature line of foods.

    "It was astounding to see so many people come together around a single table to enjoy a meal made with our Open Nature products," said Mike Minasi, president of marketing for Safeway. "Our customers have been asking for a natural product line and Safeway delivered, setting a very high standard for what natural should mean -- 100 percent natural, 100 percent real."

    Given that the word "natural" is not regulated by the FDA, the term's inclusion on food packaging has left many consumers skeptical of the claim. Safeway addresses this concern with the new line of products, and developed the Open Nature product line to provide their customers with great-tasting products made with ingredients from natural sources, containing nothing artificial. Open Nature features an expansive line of products across multiple categories with a promise of everyday low prices so that shoppers can add natural foods to every meal without breaking the budget.

    Guests at the National Picnic Day event included Safeway shoppers, employees, San Francisco Bay Area bloggers and others who won a seat at the table through an @Safeway #OpenNature Re-Tweet-to-Win contest on Twitter and through a separate sweepstakes on Safeway's Facebook page the week before the event.

    A variety of Open Nature items are already available at Safeway stores, and additional Open Nature products will be launched throughout 2011.

    By the Numbers:

    • 305 feet was the measured length of the World's Longest Picnic Table, which is 5 feet longer than a football field and equivalent to 38 standard picnic tables
    • 7,176 feet of FSC Certified Douglas Fir wood and 1,032 bolts were used to construct the table
    • It took 4 people 10 days to build the World's Longest Picnic Table
    • The World's Longest Picnic Table weighs more than 11,304 lbs
    • This table breaks the previous Guinness World Record (248 feet, 2 inches) set in New Orleans, October 2009
    • 405 people sat around the World's Longest Picnic Table at one time

    Safeway operates 1,694 stores in the United States and western Canada and had annual sales of $41.1 billion in 2010.
     

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