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Sobeys donating surplus food to feed the hungry

Grocery retailer partners with Feed Nova Scotia to distribute food province-wide

Sobeys is helping get surplus food into the hands of Nova Scotians who need it.

Meat, seafood, and fresh produce that is not sold, as well as canned and dry grocery products past their best before date, but still safe for consumption, will be donated to Feed Nova Scotia -- a charitable organization that helps feed hungry people by collecting and distributing food to more than 150 member agency food banks in the province.

The program was piloted at stores in Halifax and New Glasgow earlier in the year. The Empire-owned grocery chain is "happy with the success of the program so far" and is working on rolling it out to all of its locations in Atlantic Canada, Sobeys' spokeswoman Shauna Selig told Canadian Grocer in an email.

Sobeys said it determined the success of the program on how much "good food" it could get to those in need. "We walked through the store with Feed Nova Scotia as well as our food safety and operations teams and identified opportunities in every department for foods that could be donated," said Selig.

In the first two weeks of the pilot, the store in Halifax donated 502kgs of food, which equates to 1,100 meals, said Selig. According to a press release, Sobeys is Feed Nova Scotia's largest corporate donor.

Sobeys has also partnered with Food Depot Alimentaire on a similar initiative in Moncton, N.B.

“Sobeys is committed to proudly serving its communities, and supporting food banks and the important work they do is key to ensuring food access for everyone in Atlantic Canada,” said Peter Doucette, general manager, Sobeys Atlantic, in a release.

“This new approach will ensure more food makes it to the tables of those who need it most and we take great pride in being the grocery retailer in Atlantic Canada that is leading the way on surplus food donations,” he added.

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