PLEASANTON, CALIF. — Safeway Inc. has launched a campaign to increase its promotion of locally grown produce sold by the retailer.

"Nearly a third of Safeway’s produce comes from local sources. In California, that number is even greater, roughly 45%," said Geoff White, group vice-president of produce. "This new initiative will direct our customers to our extensive selection of premium-quality, locally grown produce at competitive prices."

Safeway’s "Locally Grown" campaign will highlight partnerships with local farmers such as G&S Farms of Brentwood, Calif., a grower of sweet corn and green beans, and Fitzgerald Orchards of Tyro, Va., which supplies East Coast Safeway stores with apples.

Safeway said it will give purchasing preference to local growers to meet customer demand. In addition, Safeway will provide local produce prominent in-store placement with "Locally Grown" promotional signs that highlight specific growers in a region.

Safeway’s in-store campaign will include a range of material including "locally grown" reference maps that will geographically show the location of local farmers as well as point-of-sale material that will tell the story of Safeway’s local suppliers.