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The Stop & Shop Supermarket Co. LLC’s 22nd annual “Food for Friends” program will begin Friday, Oct. 28 and run in all 398 stores of the Ahold USA division through Dec. 8. Customers who donate $1, $3, or $5 at checkout will help support hunger relief organizations in their local communities as well as regionally. Shoppers who give $5 will also receive a $5 coupon booklet from Northfield, Ill.-based Kraft Foods while supplies last. Quincy, Mass.-based Stop & Shop’s aim is to raise more than $2 million this holiday season.
Food for Friends will deliver 100 percent of the dollars raised to anti-hunger organizations: 60 percent directly to local food pantries and 40 percent to regional food banks. Last year, the program raised $2 million to feed needy families.
“This year’s program could not have come at a better time, as demand for food across the country is on the rise, placing more of a burden on local and regional food providers who are trying to do more with less,” noted Mark McGowan, president, Stop & Shop New England Division, which employs about 62,000 associates and operates almost 400 stores in Massachusetts, Connecticut, Rhode Island, New Hampshire, New York and New Jersey. “Programs like Food for Friends are a great way for our customers to get involved with helping their local community.”
Along with store donations, Stop & Shop will bring 20,000 turkeys to local hunger relief organizations across the Northeast next month.
“The holidays can be the hardest time of the year for families in need,” said Ron Onorato, president, Stop & Shop New York Metro Division. “Unfortunately, hunger never takes a holiday, but through our ‘Turkey Express’ program we can help put food on the table and make a difference for thousands in our communities this Thanksgiving and holiday season.”