17 May 2021

Basket of Kindness raises more than 17 tonnes of food for underprivileged in St Petersburg and surrounding region

St Petersburg, 17 May 2021 – X5 Retail Group, a leading Russian food retailer, and Foodbank Rus announce the results of a citywide Basket of Kindness food drive for vulnerable seniors and families with children. The event was held on 15 May in all Pyaterochka, Perekrestok and Karusel stores within St Petersburg’s ring road and coincided with X5 Retail Group’s fifteenth anniversary.

The drive brought in more than 17 tonnes of food, including 5.1 tonnes donated by X5. Volunteers put together 3,100 "baskets of kindness" (5.5 kg each on average) for underprivileged residents of St Petersburg and the Leningrad Region. All baskets will be delivered to the recipients by the end of the week. The charity event involved 844 volunteers from Foodbank Rus and 250 more from among the X5 store employees.

X5 Retail Group funded all expenses to hold the citywide food drive, including those associated with infrastructure and logistics. The governments of St Petersburg and the Leningrad Region, as well as the St Petersburg Diocese of the Russian Orthodox Church, provided additional support. The baskets include contributions from Henkel (hair and body care items), Unilever (personal care and household products) and Tetra Pak (a carton of ultra-pasteurised milk).

X5 Retail Group and Foodbank Rus launched the Basket of Kindness social project in 2015. X5 pioneered food drives among Russian retailers, creating and promoting local food aid infrastructure. It allows customers to buy and donate food in stores to feed people in local communities. The project also operates an online charity initiative at корзинадоброты.рф. Last year, it was used to collect food donations during the COVID-19 outbreak. Earlier this year, a Basket of Kindness food drive was held in Chelyabinsk, with all of the city’s X5 stores participating. The event helped collect about 6.6 tonnes of food, which volunteers used to put together 1,100 baskets. Food drives and other regular donation initiatives have already brought in more 87 tonnes of food so far during 2021. In 2020, charity events in X5 stores and at корзинадоброты.рф raised more than 267 tonnes of food, almost 100 tonnes more than in 2019. Overall, 142,092 people received food aid in 2020, including children, elderly living alone, disadvantaged and vulnerable residents, and medical practitioners.