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City of Kitchener and Maple Leaf Foods Joint Task Force Holds First Meeting

TORONTO, Dec. 22, 2011, 2011 (Canada NewsWire via COMTEX) –A joint task force between the City of Kitchener and Maple Leaf Foods —
comprised of two members from Maple Leaf Foods, two from the city and
the local ward councillor – held its first meeting on December 20,

“This meeting was very productive in terms of the mutual cooperation and
interest shown by all task force members in finding positive solutions
to all the issues,” said Jeff Willmer, Deputy CAO, Community Services
Department, City of Kitchener and task force co-chair.

Established in November, the joint task force’s goals are to assist
local Maple Leaf Foods employees facing job loss, developing strategies
to minimize the impact of the closure on the local economy and also
focus on the reuse or redevelopment of the 25-acre property.

To accomplish its goals, the task force has divided its work into two
subcommittees – the employment advisory team and the property team. The
task force’s role is to provide oversight, guidance, evaluation, and
decision in regard to recommendations made to the employment advisory
and property teams.

At its next meeting in the January/February timeframe, the task force
will focus on land and property. The purpose of this meeting will be to
share existing information regarding property specifications,
opportunities for new business activities and employment creation at
the site, potential urban redevelopment options, regional
infrastructure planning and other topics. Following this meeting, the
property team will be established.

The employment advisory team will meet in the February/March timeframe.
This meeting will focus on information sharing regarding employee
demographics, status of closure agreement and skills/retraining needs,
among other topics.

“We are looking forward to a coordinated approach to both the employment
initiative as well as finding good uses for our property,” said Rory
McAlpine, Vice-President, Government and Industry Relations and task
force co-chair. “While the closure is two years away, it’s important we
keep working together to achieve our common goals.”

Maple Leaf Foods Inc. is a leading food processing company,
headquartered in Toronto, Canada. The Company employs approximately
21,000 people at its operations across Canada and in the United States,
the United Kingdom, and Asia. The Company had sales of $5.0 billion in

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SOURCE: Maple Leaf Foods Inc.

Andrea Bailey Interim Manager of Communications and Marketing Communications &
Customer Service City of Kitchener (519) 741-2458   Maple
Leaf Foods Media hotline: 416-926-2020