Panera Bread(R) to Open in Richmond Hill

Panera Bread(R) to Open in Richmond Hill

Three Bakery-Cafes to Provide Panera Warmth to the Greater Toronto Area

Toronto--(Marketwire) - Millennium Bread, Inc. announced today the opening of Canada's first Panera Bread bakery-cafe. Torontonian and Millennium franchise owner, Craig Milne, will be on hand Monday, October 6, to celebrate the new Richmond Hill location.

Panera Bread, the leading bakery-cafe concept in North America, is committed to providing great tasting, quality food that people can trust. The menu is highlighted by antibiotic free chicken, wholesome freshly-baked breads and select organic ingredients.

"When we embarked on the journey to bring Panera Bread to Canada, we made a commitment to ourselves that we would do things right and provide that unique fit with Canadian lifestyles and sensibilities. I believe we have done just that and I'm excited to welcome Canadian guests into the Panera community," Milne said. "Our team is passionate about providing Toronto with real food rooted in handcrafted, fresh-baked artisan bread, engaging with our guests and the community, and welcoming everyone to our warm and inviting environment."

The new bakery-cafe at Richmond Hill, the first of three planned to open by early 2009, will open for breakfast, lunch and dinner. For breakfast, Panera Bread offers a wide selection of artisan breads, bagels, pastries, soufflés, breakfast sandwiches, baked goods, coffee and hot and cold espresso beverages. The bakery-cafe also offers hand-tossed salads, signature sandwiches and hearty soups served in edible sourdough bread bowls. The menu is complemented by specialty seasonal products, as well as fresh breads baked daily by skilled bakers in the bakery-cafe.

"What originally impressed me about Panera was the freshness and quality of the breads and food. As I've really gotten to know the concept over the last 12 months, I have become ever more impressed and increasingly convinced that Panera offers a fresh option to the Canadian consumer which I think is unlike anything they have experienced," Milne said.

Panera Bread offers a unique dining experience, with quick service, real china, overstuffed chairs and cozy conversation areas. Each bakery-cafe also offers free wireless fidelity (WiFi) internet access.

Milne is also committed to supporting the local community, through the Panera Bread Operation Dough-Nation® programs.

"It's important for us to support the local community," Milne said. "Our Operation Dough-Nation programs ensure that each cafe gives back to the neighborhood in which our customers and associates live and work. Through our Day-End Dough-Nation™ effort, unsold bakery products will be packaged at the end of each day and donated to local food banks and charities. We will also match a portion of cash donations made by our customers through our Community Breadbox™ program. These funds will then be distributed to a local non-profit organization."

The Richmond Hill bakery-cafe is located next to Hillcrest Mall on Yonge Street North of 16th Avenue and will be open daily from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. The phone number is 905-508-7155 .

Milne said two additional bakery-cafes -- one in Mississauga next to the Square One Mall and the other in Thornhill next to the RioCentre Shopping Center -- are expected to open by early 2009.

Millennium Bread, Inc. is a franchisee of Panera Bread, which owns and franchises over 1,200 bakery-cafes under the Panera Bread® and Saint Louis Bread Co.® names in North America. Additional information is available at www.panerabread.com.

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