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Supermarket forced to donate £162k of dinners after Twitter campaign

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Woman carving Christmas dinner turkey

© Rex Features

Supermarket chain Lidl has been forced to give €200,000 (£162,000 or $263,000) of food to homeless food banks after a donation pledge went viral.

On Monday (December 10), the Belgian branch of the European company said that it would hand out five four-course Christmas dinners to centres for each tweet containing the hash tag "#luxevooriedereen" (Dutch for "luxury for everyone").

According to Yahoo!, a Lidl spokesman admitted that stores had expected to hand out around 1,000 of the €20 (£16 or $26) dinner packs, consisting of tomato soup, vol-au-vents with chips, an ice-cream cake and chocolates.

Instead, local newspapers wrote about the offer and hundreds of people retweeted messages within 24 hours.

By the end of the day-long campaign, 1,500 people had posted messages, meaning that Lidl now has to deliver 7,500 dinners.

Local media were quick to say that the brand had been caught out, but the supermarket denied reports that they were unprepared and pledged to donate an extra 2,500 meals across the country, bringing the total to 10,000 dinner packs.

"We've learnt quite a few lessons over the past 48 hours, to say the least," said the spokesman, before adding that the chain had not yet decided whether to repeat the exercise next year.

Last week, the most expensive Christmas dinner menu was revealed, with four courses costing £31,250 ($50,431) per head.

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