press release

July 19, 2013

Jamie Miller
Giant Food of Landover, MD
(301) 341-8776
jmiller@giantfood.com

Local Route Program at Giant Highlights Healthy, Locally Grown Food

Landover, Md. (July 19, 2013) – This summer, Giant Food of Landover, Md. is proud to re-launch its Local Route program in all 169 neighborhood stores, which guides customers to fresh, locally grown produce. Customers can find local products in Giant stores throughout the year, but during the summer months many “in season” produce items have come right from the ground in a nearby town or county. Each week, Giant’s produce departments will highlight fresh local items in-store and the farms where they were grown.

Giant has been a leader in the Buy Local movement for many years, supporting farmers and manufacturers in the states where they operate stores. When consumers and retailers purchase products from within their own communities, the local economy benefits, as money and resources stay within that community. Giant is a proud participant in Maryland’s Best and Virginia Grown programs.

“Summer is the ideal season to add more fruits and vegetables to daily diets,” said Diane Hicks, director of produce, Giant Food of Landover, Md. “Giant’s Local Route program recognizes the efforts of local farmers while providing customers with easier access to healthy options. We are excited to encourage our customers to purchase fresh foods that are not only good for them but good for the community as well.”

Here are some popular local produce items that are currently in season along with tips about how to select and maximize freshness:

  • Green beans – They should be a bright green color with a velvety texture and no discoloration. Fresh green beans should snap in half easily. Store them in a plastic bag in the refrigerator, and don’t wash them until you are ready to use.
  • Corn – Look for husks with a green color and pale silk. Gently pull the top of the husk away. If the kernels are discolored, dented or missing from several rows, that means the corn is not fresh. To store, simply keep unhusked corn in the refrigerator. If you husk the corn, place it in storage bags before refrigerating. Eat as soon as possible for maximum taste and freshness.
  • Tomatoes – When buying tomatoes, look for those with a deep, rich red color. They should be without wrinkles, cracks or bruises. If a tomato yields to light pressure, it’s ripe. Tomatoes are sensitive to cold and should be stored at room temperature, out of direct sunlight. Tomatoes will keep up to a week, depending on ripeness at the time of purchase.
  • Cucumbers – Cucumbers should be firm with a bright, even color throughout. Be sure to avoid those that have soft spots or blemishes. Store in your refrigerator’s crisper drawer.
  • Peppers – Choose peppers that are firm with smooth skin and a fairly even shape. The coloring should be uniform, with no blemishes, soft spots or wrinkles. Store green peppers in the produce drawer of your refrigerator for 5 to 7 days.

Visit www.giantfood.com for more details and fresh new ideas, including recipes, to lighten up your summer meals with locally grown produce!

About Giant Food of Landover, Md.

Giant Food LLC, headquartered in Landover, Md., operates 169 supermarkets in Virginia, Maryland, Delaware, and the District of Columbia, and employs approximately 20,000 associates. Included within the 169 stores are 155 full-service pharmacies. Giant opened the first supermarket in the nation’s capital on February 6, 1936. Giving back to the community is a cornerstone that was instilled by the founders more than 77 years ago. The company’s core areas of giving include hunger, education, health and wellness, and supporting service members and military families. In 2012, Giant’s monetary and in-kind contributions exceeded $12 million, and the nation’s capital grocer helped partners provide 55.2 million meals. For more information on Giant, visit www.GiantFood.com.