Supervalu, Save-A-Lot reiterate commitment to combating food deserts

Save-A-Lot to open store in Lawndale neighborhood of Chicago next month

CHICAGO — As part of its continued agreement with the Partnership for a Healthier America, Supervalu announced that it is on track to eliminate food deserts nationwide.

At an event held Tuesday that included such attendees as first lady Michelle Obama and Chicago mayor Rahm Emanuel, Supervalu announced that its wholly owned subsidiary Save-A-Lot will open a new store in Chicago's Lawndale neighborhood at the end of November in order to position the area as a food oasis.

Supervalu previously announced plans to open 250 new Save-A-Lot stores in areas across the United States where there is limited or no access to affordable, healthy, fresh foods. Since then, the company has opened 14 new Save-A-Lot stores in food deserts throughout the country. Based on U.S. Department of Agriculture guidelines, Save-A-Lot currently operates more than 400 of its nearly 1,300 stores in areas that otherwise would be recognized as being in or near a food desert, the company said.

"Supervalu and its network of stores, including our Save-A-Lot subsidiary, are committed to bringing healthy, affordable food offerings to customers here in Chicago and throughout the United States," Supervalu president and CEO Craig Herkert said. "We appreciate the tremendous leadership shown by first lady Michelle Obama and mayor Emanuel to address this important issue.

"In addition to food access and affordability, we are taking steps to help consumers make the best food choices possible for themselves and their families," Herkert said. "According to research, nearly 80 percent of customers say they need help and advice around planning, shopping, cooking and preparing food. As a leading grocery retailer, we're ideally positioned to help them by providing the programs, resources and tools they need to achieve a healthy diet."

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