LIKE every major retail society, Midlands Co-op donates tens of thousands of pounds to charities and good causes every year. However as staff at two of the society's stores have discovered, even the smallest and least expensive gift can make a big difference to some recipients.
When keepers at Twycross Zoo near Tamworth let it be known that their orang-utans and apes will play for hours with empty potato bags, the stores were happy to help.
Now a regular supply of used paper sacks is sent to the zoo from Midlands Co-op's superstore in Glenfield and its supermarket in Groby Road, Leicester.
Keepers use the bags to make beds for the apes; to hide food and the little ones even hide in them. The sacks are also used as slides and sometimes pushed around on the ground in a display of strength.
Twycross Zoo spokeswoman Kim Riley commented: "Both the keepers and the apes are pleased to see the bags arrive each week. We are sincerely grateful to the staff at Midlands Co-op for taking the time to ensure the sacks are put aside for us."
Our picture shows Batu, a lively young orang-utan from Malaysia, examining her latest gift from Midlands Co-op.