The grocery industry has raised millions to help the Asian tsunami relief effort.
Large corporate donations have been pledged to the various charities, including the Disasters Emergency Committee and the Red Cross, and customer collection points have been set up by most chains.
Tesco has stores and sourcing offices in Thailand, Sri Lanka and Malaysia, but none were damaged and it is getting aid to people on the ground through these operations. In the UK, it has donated £100,000 to the Red Cross and is collecting from customers and staff at its tills.
Somerfield is collecting in its 1,300 stores and has already passed on £250,000 to the DEC and, with the Red Cross, sent out 160,000 litres of fresh water.
Sainsbury, Asda, Morrisons, the Co-operative Group, Scotmid, and M& S have all set up collection points in-store. Asda said its Castlepoint store in Bournemouth raised £11,500 in four days. Asda and Sainsbury have made corporate donations. Morrisons and the Co-operative Group are still to make a decision. Wal-Mart donated $2m.
Nisa-Today’s will contribute £10,000 to the appeal, while C&C operator Dhamecha is giving over £100,000 to relief bodies.
M&S has contributed £250,000 while it and Waitrose
parent the John Lewis Partnership, which has given £50,000 to the DEC, have also given clothing to the Red Cross to distribute to UK travellers returning home with nothing. Unilever, Mars, Nestlé, PepsiCo, P&G and Cadbury all have operations in the worst-hit countries and local employees are helping by donating money, products and logistics. The companies have also made substantial donations.
Pernod Ricard and Diageo each donated about £500,000. Scottish Courage has pledged £5,000 on top of a £50,000 contribution from parent company, Scottish & Newcastle, through its joint venture with United Breweries in India.
The Grocer’s publisher, William Reed Publishing, has donated £5,000.
Meanwhile, the industry’s welfare charities say they are on hand to support the families of British victims who may have worked in the trade (see p22).
>>p26 Support the tsunami appeal
Fiona McLelland