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Kroger has announced the launch of its "Small Business Resource Guide – as part of its Framework for Action: Diversity, Equity & Inclusion plan, featuring steps developed in collaboration with associates and leaders to accelerate and promote greater change in the workplace and in the communities the organization serves.

"In 2020, Kroger achieved $4.1 billion in diverse supplier spend, representing an increase of 21% versus a year ago and build on our commitment to reach $10 billion in diverse supplier spend by 2030. We remain committed to doing the work to advance our longstanding and nationally recognized supplier inclusion program, reflecting partnerships with entrepreneurs of color, women, and veterans as well as companies founded by the LGBTQ+ community and business operators with intellectual and physical disabilities," said Rodney McMullen, Kroger's chairman and CEO. "Greater racial, gender, health, and wealth equity will drive true and long-lasting change and better outcomes in our country. And as America's grocer, we're honored to play a role in driving this change as an employer, grocery provider, and community partner."

The company says that last year it "introduced 107 new diverse suppliers, a 91% increase versus 2019. Of these suppliers, five played a leading role in supplying Kroger personal protective equipment during the peak of the COVID-19 public health crisis."