Supermarkets show support for Ukraine and remove Russian products from sale
Asda, Tesco and Sainsbury’s all have announced moves to provide support to Ukraine after Russia invaded the country last week.
Asda and its charity, the Asda Foundation, announced a £1m package to support displaced Ukrainian families in Europe and the UK.
The supermarket is providing immediate support for families forced to leave their homes in the aftermath of the Russian invasion and long-term support for Ukrainian refugees that arrive in the UK. The support package includes the following measures:
Pledging £100k in Asda Foundation support to national UK-based refugee support groups.
Making Asda Foundation grants of up to £580k available to support local and grass-roots refugee groups across the UK.
A £250k corporate donation to UNICEF to support the setup of a Blue Dot centre, providing a safe space for up to 5,000 children and families on the move and emergency water and hygiene kits to be deployed on the ground.
Essential supplies including George clothing, nappies, toiletries, period products and food delivered by Asda logistics partners to a supplier site in Poland for onward distribution in Ukraine.
In addition to the support package, Asda will enable customer cash donations in-store and via grocery home shopping to international charities working on the ground in Ukraine and neighbouring countries.
The supermarket has also confirmed that it is removing products that originate from Russia from its stores and online.
Mohsin Issa, Asda’s co-owner, said:
“We stand with our customers and colleagues who are shocked by the Russian invasion of Ukraine - and our thoughts are with those people whose lives are affected by this crisis. The community spirit that is at the heart of Asda extends beyond our own borders and we’re proud to have worked with a range of partners in the UK to provide practical and meaningful support for Ukrainians at home and for those who continue to seek safety in neighbouring countries.”
John Cookman, deputy chair at the Asda Foundation said:
“We have a long history of supporting grassroots community groups across the UK, and that includes when communities respond in times of global crisis. As we look ahead to the coming months we see an ongoing need to support refugees arriving in the UK and are pleased to be able to play our part in helping groups to provide essential support services on the ground.”
Sainsbury‘s says it stands with Ukraine and has also announced it is to stop selling products that are 100% sourced from Russia, such as Russian standard vodka and Karpayskiye black sunflower seeds.
The supermarket also stated that it is renaming chicken kievs to match the Ukrainian spelling of the capital city, in the wake of the Russian invasion. It said it will start rolling out new packaging in the coming weeks using chicken kyiv, rather than the Russian spelling kiev.
Meanwhile, a spokesperson for Tesco set out how the company was to show solidarity with Ukraine.
“Our thoughts are with the people affected by the Ukraine crisis and with all those impacted at such a difficult and worrying time.
“We are committed to supporting humanitarian relief efforts through our partnerships with the Red Cross, food banks and other relief organisations.
“Across our UK, ROI and Central Europe businesses we've already taken some initial steps in order to do so:
We are making a donation of £1 million to the Red Cross Ukraine Crisis Appeal to support their vital work. Red Cross teams in Ukraine and the border countries are providing essential aid. In Ukraine, Ukrainian Red Cross volunteers are providing first aid, warm clothes, and support in shelters and metro stations. International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) are focusing on restoring water supplies, providing support to medical facilities, and providing food and shelter to those affected by the fighting.
Our first donations of food, hygiene products and clothing left depots in Hungary, the Czech Republic and Slovakia on 26 February. We will continue to work closely with official relief organisations in all three countries, as well as local governments.
In the UK & ROI, Tesco Mobile calls to Ukraine are now free for those trying to reach friends or loved ones. Customers using our international calling card can make calls to and from Ukraine for free too.
For anyone who needs to send money from the UK to Ukraine, Tesco Bank has removed all send fees, so customers can send money direct to a bank account for free using Moneygram at Tesco’s International Money Transfer service (in-store or online at Tesco.moneygram.com).
“We're aware that many of our customers and colleagues want to help. We are currently exploring this with the Red Cross and will share more in the coming days.”