Nutrition in the News: The Bright Side of Wal-Mart

With all of the negative news surrounding Wal-Mart, it is good to finally see some positive light shine on the mega-retailer. As stated in an article featured on MSN, Wal-Mart plans to donate two billion dollars to help end world hunger. The two billion, which is more than double what Wal-Mart usually donates, will be given to food banks as well as turned into food stamps.  The plans come in two parts. At least $250 billion will be awarded in grants to support refrigerated trucks, which help to keep food fresher on the journey from warehouses to stores. However, the bulk of the donation will be over 1.1 billion pounds of food to be donated to food banks. All of this money will hopefully provide over 1 billion meals.

People shopping in a food bank. Photo courtesy of 4 and 20 blackbirds WordPress.

I’m not a huge fan of Wal-Mart, never have been and probably never will be, but I do applaud them for doubling their charitable donations and reaching out to give back to the community. Hunger is something that affects billions of people world-wide and it’s about time one of America’s most successful retailers recognized this. However, if you do some research, Wal-Mart is still slightly behind on their donations. For example, Kroger grocery stores donated over 50 million pounds of food in 2009, which is more than Wal-Mart had donated.  For a graph on this, visit http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/37106519/ns/business-retail/.

However, as happy as I am that they are doing this, I can’t help but wonder if they are doing it for the right reasons. Wal-Mart is currently in a huge class action law suit in relation to their employee welfare, more specifically gender discrimination in the pay roll. The question that looms in my mind is “Is Wal-Mart doing this just to save face?” I hate to question a good deed..But blame it on the journalist in me.

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~ by therealnutritionist on May 13, 2010.

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