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Loblaw customers look to donate 'goodwill' gift cards to local food bank

(iStock Photo)

The Greater Vancouver Food Bank has received several inquiries asking if they would accept Loblaw gift card donations

Loblaw is sending out $25 gift cards as a good will gesture, after admitting it participated in bread price-fixing

VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) – It looks like some people are trying to put their $25 gift cards from Loblaw to good use, by donating them to a local food bank.

Glenda Morin with the Greater Vancouver Food Bank says she’s received several calls and emails every day from people promising to hand their cards over to the group once received in the mail.

“I think people are eager and wanting to help the food bank and help other people in need, so it’s a good feeling that people feel that they’re helping out,” she says. But Morin admits while the gesture is appreciated, cash is always king. “We do prefer cash donations as that gives us a better buying power. If we get the gift cards, they must be redeemed in the store at retail prices.”

She says each dollar collected translates into about $3 worth of buying power, which goes a long way especially when buying in bulk. Gift cards cannot be used at discounted bulk prices.

There is also another advantage to donating money.

“You would be entitled to a tax receipt for a cash donation, as with the gift cards you are not.”

But if you do plan on donating your gift card, Morin recommends dropping it off in person.

“Just in case they get lost in the mail, because it’s like putting cash in the mail… We’re also encouraging the Loblaw consumers to use their $25 gift card for their own purchases. If they wish to purchase nutritious non-perishable food, they can donate that food into the bins that are located in the stores.”

The gift cards are being sent to customers as a good will gesture by the grocery store giant, after it admitted to taking part in a bread price-fixing scheme.