Southeastern Grocers Aims to Ease Coin Shortage
To address the current nationwide coin shortage while also helping the needy, Southeastern Grocers Inc. (SEG) has launched SEG Positive Change Round Up Campaign.
Starting Friday, July 24, customers throughout SEG’s store footprint can round up their grocery bills to the nearest dollar at checkout. All change donated will be electronically collected and the total rounded up to the nearest dollar by the grocer.
“At Southeastern Grocers, we are working diligently to make a difference in the communities we serve, and we are committed to protecting the health and safety of our associates, customers and neighbors as the country continues to navigate the effects of COVID-19,” said Anthony Hucker, president and CEO of Jacksonville, Florida-based Southeastern Grocers. “While the nation’s shortage of coins is unexpected, we see this as another opportunity to once again help our neighbors in need and grow stronger together.”
The campaign will feature several charitable partners.
- July 24 through Aug. 4: Feeding America
- Aug. 5 through Aug. 25: The American Heart Association’s Life Is Why We Give fundraising campaign
- Aug. 26 through Sept. 29, Feeding America, in support of Hunger Action Month
- Sept. 30 through Nov. 3, In Florida, Georgia and the Carolinas, American Red Cross’ Disaster Relief; in Alabama and Mississippi, the American Cancer Society Making Strides Against Breast Cancer; and Louisiana, Ochsner Cancer Institute.
SEG will continue the roundup program in all Bi-Lo, Fresco y Más, Harveys Supermarket, and Winn-Dixie stores throughout the rest of 2020, with every cent raised going back into the local communities the grocer serves.
The shortage was precipitated by the COVID-19 pandemic, during which customers have been less likely to 'cash in' coins kept at home, while unanticipated shutdowns also slowed production of new coins at the U.S. Mint. Since supermarkets still get a significant amount of cash-using customers, with about one in five transactions paid for in this way, according to the National Grocers Association, that means that food retailers haven’t been able to replenish their stocks of coins after giving customers change. This situation has even led Kroger to stop distributing change to shoppers, instead putting it on loyalty cards or donating it to charity. SEG’s campaign appears to be a variation of this idea.
The parent company of Bi-Lo, Fresco y Más, Harveys Supermarket and Winn-Dixie grocery stores, SEG is one of the largest conventional supermarket companies in the United States, with grocery stores, liquor stores and in-store pharmacies serving communities throughout Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina and South Carolina. SEG is No. 34 on The PG 100, Progressive Grocer’s 2020 list of the top food and consumables retailers in in North America. The Kroger Co., based in Cincinnati, is No. 3 on the list.