Market Basket, Fresh Truck to receive MBA Pinnacle Awards at Nov. 18 symposium

Issue November 2015

The Massachusetts Bar Association will present the 2015 MBA Pinnacle Awards to Market Basket and Fresh Truck on Wednesday, Nov. 18, as part of the MBA's Second Annual Consumer Advocacy Symposium, which will be held at the MBA's Boston office at 20 West Street, from 4-7 p.m. Established by the MBA's Consumer Advocacy Task Force, the MBA Pinnacle Awards recognize companies - one large and one small - which have demonstrated the highest commitment to their customers by taking affirmative steps to improve the consumer experience in Massachusetts.

In addition to the Pinnacle Award ceremony, this year's symposium will feature two panels on food labeling: 1) Litigation over food labeling as "healthy" or "natural;" and 2) Legal issues triggered by the mislabeling of seafood.

Demoulas Super Markets Inc., doing business as Market Basket food stores, is a retail food operator that started in 1917 in Lowell, Massachusetts, and is now headquartered in Tewksbury. Market Basket has always been a socially responsible company that puts consumers and communities first by consistently offering low prices and high quality groceries without sacrificing variety, customer service and an enhanced shopping experience. Employing 25,000 dedicated and loyal associates, it operates 75 retail stores and three distribution centers. Market Basket's "People First" culture was established many decades ago by the late Telemachus A. Demoulas, who led the company for nearly 70 years and built the company and culture as we know it today. The company's culture starts with respect and dignity for all and balances the interests of all stakeholders so that all prosper. In 2015 Market Basket is projected to hit a milestone of $5 billion in annual sales.

"The outpouring of support Market Basket received from its customers in July 2014 when the company was threatened with a change of management showed how strongly Massachusetts families supported Market Basket's consumer-based approach to doing business," said MBA Vice President Christopher A. Kenney, chair of the MBA's Consumer Advocacy Task Force. "We are honored to present Market Basket with our 2015 Pinnacle Award in recognition of its unwavering commitment to pro-consumer policies, which have brought affordable groceries, dignified jobs and more to our communities."

Fresh Truck is a mobile food market on a mission to radically impact community health by getting food to those who need it most. Founded in Boston in 2013, Fresh Truck operates converted school buses as 300-square-feet mobile food markets and interactive food-health learning spaces. Fresh Truck partners with health centers and other community organizations to combine health care services and access to affordable, healthy food.

"By identifying novel and creative ways of delivering healthy food options to low-income households, Fresh Truck itself has become a staple in the communities it serves," said Kenney. "We are proud to honor Fresh Truck with a 2015 Pinnacle Award for its innovative and forthright response to consumer demands for community access to healthy foods."

The MBA's Consumer Advocacy Task Force

The MBA's Consumer Advocacy Task Force was established in 2013 to advance the MBA's commitment to protecting consumer rights. Comprised of lawyers from a variety of legal practices, the Task Force is focused on empowering the public by serving as a clearinghouse of consumer protection information for consumers. In 2014, the Task Force created the MBA Pinnacle Awards to recognize companies that employ proactive initiatives for the benefit of consumers in Massachusetts. The Pinnacle Awards will be given out during the MBA's Consumer Advocacy Symposium, an annual event featuring panel discussions on cutting-edge legal issues around consumer interests.