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CINCINNATI, OH, April 5, 2004 -- The Kroger Co. (NYSE: KR) today honored 80 companies as Outstanding Minority-Owned and Women-Owned Business Enterprises (M/WBEs) for 2003.

For this inaugural event, firms were selected based on several criteria, including quality of product or service, innovation and presentation of new ideas, performance, and sales volume.

Vendors were nominated by corporate and division buyers and merchandisers. The firms fall into two categories: those that provide retail products or services for sale in Kroger’s stores, and not-for-resale products and service. In 2003, Kroger spent approximately $690 million with M/WBEs.

“Supplier diversity is an important part of Kroger’s business strategy, and we’re proud to honor the talented partners that have played such an integral role in our success,” said Don McGeorge, Kroger president and chief operating officer. “We believe this recognition will help express our appreciation to our outstanding M/WBE business partners and inform other M/WBE companies that Kroger is continually seeking qualified vendors for all areas of our business. Kroger’s goal is to be sure that our suppliers reflect the broad diversity of the customers and marketplaces we serve.”

For more information about these 80 M/WBE vendors and Kroger’s supplier diversity program, please visit our website at The following companies were honored:

  • A & B Maintenance - Floor care and janitorial services
  • All Gone Termite & Pest Control - Pest control for retail stores
  • Allstate Masonry - Masonry work for construction projects
  • Almeida’s Cleaning - Floor care and general cleaning
  • American Fish & Seafood - Seafood products
  • Andrews Foodservice Systems - Refrigerated/frozen grocery distributor
  • Andy's Seasonings, Inc. - Breading for meat and seafood items
  • Architectwon International - Architectural services
  • AVI Food Systems Inc. - Vending machine services/provider
  • Azure Waves Seafood - Blue Harbor brand breaded shrimp
  • Bayou City Fish Co. - Fresh and frozen seafood
  • BE & SCO Manufacturing - Flour tortilla equipment, department design, etc.
  • Blaine Pharmaceuticals - Pharmaceuticals
  • Cacique USA - Hispanic cheeses
  • Cashman-Edwards Inc. Food Brokers - Food broker
  • Cimarron Services/Pinnacle Services - General contracting and carpentry
  • Corban Pharmaceuticals - Pharmaceuticals
  • Dedicated Transportation of Florida - cross-dock floral transportation services
  • Deep Rock Water Co. - Bottled water
  • Ernest Green's Janitorial & Carpet Cleaning Service - Office cleaning
  • Executive Courier Express - Delivery service for floral orders
  • Florida Star Sales, Inc. - Strawberries and grape tomatoes
  • Foxx & Co., CPAs - Auditing and accounting services
  • Frieda's Inc. - Specialty produce items
  • Fuji Food Products - Fresh sushi
  • Glory Foods - Glory brand canned vegetables and Glory/Kroger frozen entrees
  • Green Valley Food Corp - Bean sprouts
  • Harris Freeman & Co. - Spices
  • Heil-Brice Retail Advertising - Advertising agency
  • Henry's Dream Inc. - Tejano salsa products
  • Henry's Industrial Compactor - Hydraulic equipment sales and service
  • Hi-Country Marketing - Food brokerage services
  • Innovative Marketing – Graphics, printing, multimedia advertising
  • Islands Bakery - San Juan brand salsa
  • Jana's Classics - Fresh and frozen cookies for resale and as ice cream ingredient
  • Juanita's Foods - Menudo, hominy, mole, and hot sauce
  • Kaufman, Levine & Partners Inc. - Marketing/Promotional consulting services
  • La Canasta Mexican Food Products - Tortilla chips
  • Lifeway Foods, Inc. - Yogurt dairy drinks
  • Lulu's Dessert Corp. - Gelatins and parfaits
  • Lynn H. Armstrong & Associates - Architectural services
  • The Lyttle Jansen Group – Consulting, training & development
  • M A Custom Floor Designs - Floor coverings
  • Mama Turney's Homemade Pies - Deli pies
  • Marketing Works - Advertising and public relations
  • Marquez Brothers - El Mexicano brand cheese, meat, and grocery items
  • Megen Construction Co. Inc. – commercial construction
  • Melissa's World Variety Produce - Specialty produce items
  • Mepco Label Systems – Labels
  • Milestone Capital Management LLC – Capital investment services
  • Millers Bar-B-Que - Baked beans
  • Moody-Nolan, Inc. - Architectural services
  • Mostly Muffins - Muffins and other bakery items
  • Motive Power Services - Battery room service
  • No Pudge Foods, Inc. - Fat-free brownies and fudge
  • OCCMd Group, PA - Medical and case management
  • Ole Mexican Foods, Inc. - Hispanic food items
  • Palmer Promotions – Promotional and special event items
  • Paul Sturkey Bottling Co. – Salad dressings and spices
  • Phyllon Marketing – Advertising, marketing and media relations
  • Professional Data Resources Inc. - IT consulting services
  • PSI-Protein Specialists - Entrees and deli meats
  • R.P. Printing – Printing, graphics, labels and ad specialties
  • Reggio's Pizza - Frozen pizza, pasta and wraps
  • Reyes Distributors - Distributor of Hispanic candy and food items
  • RGI Design, Inc. – Advertising layout design & corporate brand packaging
  • RSL Contractors – Construction: drywall and ceilings
  • Sarkisian Coffee - Gourmet coffee
  • The Silverhart Group - Broker for promotional and in-line GM items
  • Sugar Plum Fairy Baking Co. - Specialty desserts
  • Tai Foong USA - Battered seafood items
  • Top Quality Maintenance - Floor care
  • Tower Energy Group - Gasoline
  • TWT Distributing - Distributor of ethnic health and beauty care products
  • Tyee Baskets - Baskets for floral department
  • Vie-Del Company - White grape juice
  • VM International - Housewares and seasonal general merchandise items
  • Wada Farms Potatoes - Idaho potatoes
  • Worksite Consultants - Pre-employment drug screenings and physicals
  • Worldwide Business Consulting – Professional business consulting services

Headquartered in Cincinnati, Ohio, Kroger is the nation's largest retail grocery chain. At the end of the third quarter, the Company operated 2,343 supermarkets and multi-department stores in 31 states under nearly two dozen banners, including Kroger, Fred Meyer, Ralphs, Smith's, King Soopers, Dillon, Fry's, City Market, Food 4 Less and Quality Food Centers. Kroger also operates 787 convenience stores, 396 fine jewelry stores, 70 supermarket fuel centers and 42 food processing plants.

Kroger Contacts:
Media Contact: Gary Rhodes
(513) 762-1304

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