Kaikoura residents to receive $400,000 of groceries


IAG and Countdown have collaborated to donate around $400,000 worth of food and grocery products to the Kaikoura District Council.

Countdown had stock on the KiwiRail train, which was trapped on the defunct rail lines outside Kaikoura. The supermarket company has been advised that it could take many months to retrieve the stock.

Countdown’s insurer CGU, a trading brand under IAG decided to collaborate with the Supermarket to donate the product to the much needed Kaikoura community.

IAG’s NZ CEO Craig Olsen says, “Having been in Kaikoura myself and met residents and businesses people, I know the importance of such gestures to the people who are affected.

“The Kaikoura community has come together and shown itself to be incredibly strong, but there are also many who have been doing it tough particularly in more isolated areas.

“I’m proud that a number of different organisations have been able to come together to assist with this opportunity to provide some relief – and for this to come in time to remind folk they are not forgotten over the festive season,” Mr Olsen said.

The stock came from Countdown’s Auckland National Distribution Centre, and was headed for Countdown stores in the South Island.

There are almost 600 different types of product in the Countdown container, including canned fish, tinned vegetables, biscuits, coffee and tea, clothing, cleaning products, batteries and light bulbs.

Countdown’s General Manager of Corporate Affairs James Walker says, “For many New Zealanders the past month has been incredibly challenging, and particularly for the people of Kaikoura and the surrounding communities, who are continuing to live in the aftermath of the earthquake. We hope that by working with Kaikoura District Council our rescued stock can go some way to helping the north Canterbury community especially at this time of the year.”

Sheena Hamilton, Kaikoura Recovery Team, Kaikoura District Council says that they are overwhelmed with the generosity and the timing of this delivery is perfect.

“We are so appreciative to receive this overwhelmingly generous donation. We are currently unloading the stock from the train and we are now working with councils in surrounding areas so that we can start sending much needed food packages as a bit of a belated Christmas gift.

“We are also planning to use a lot of the products as part of the many community engagement events we have planned over the coming weeks to help keep the people of Kaikoura positive,” says Ms Hamilton. “This includes gifting stickers, toys and chocolate for children attending our New Year’s Eve celebrations this weekend.”

IAG has also supported the earthquake recovery through donating thousands of dollars worth of radio advertising for the Red Cross to promote its ‘earthquake appeal’ and has also fundraised through its network of 65 AMI stores.

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