Leading Brands, Inc. North American Bottling Division Announces: Major New Co-Packing Agreements with Three Major Beverage Companies

VANCOUVER, British Columbia--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Oct. 9, 2002-- Anticipated Aggregate 4,000,000 Incremental Cases of Annual Production

Leading Brands, Inc. (NASDAQ:LBIX) (TSX:LBI), Canada's largest independent, fully integrated brand management company, announces that it has entered into three new co-packing agreements to provide major new volumes to its plants.

The Company has agreed with Ocean Spray International to extend the term of their bottling agreement and also add new package sizes to the portfolio bottled for them. As part of this new arrangement the Company will work with Ocean Spray in developing new products and ideas.

The Company has also signed an agreement with a large North American company in the fast growing ready to drink alcoholic beverage market, to bottle their Western United States volume. This arrangement will result in Leading Brands materially increasing production scope and capacity to accommodate the new business.

The Company has further agreed to bottle a variety of products for sale in Western Canada for a regional producer of juice and other beverage products.

North American Bottling President Tim Dagg said: "We are very proud to expand our relationship with Ocean Spray as well as establish new arrangements with these other two companies. We estimate that these new agreements will provide us with approximately 4,000,000 cases(1) of incremental volume for our plants. The plant modifications and line installations that accompany these deals will increase our overall plant capacity by more than 25% and allow us considerably more flexibility for new co-packing business and our new product launches. We anticipate that these contracts will be substantially accretive to earnings in 2003."

About Leading Brands, Inc.

Leading Brands, Inc. (NASDAQ:LBIX) (TSX:LBI) is the largest independent, fully integrated premium beverage company in Canada. The Company's unique Integrated Distribution System (IDS)(TM) offers turnkey, one-stop shopping to food and beverage brand owners, including manufacturing, distribution, sales/marketing and licensing. In addition, Leading Brands produces their own line of beverages such as TREK Optimized Performance Beverage(TM), Pez(R) 100% Juices(TM), Johnny's Roadside(R) Iced Tea and Lemonade, Country Harvest(R) Juices, Caesar's(R) Bloody Caesar Cocktail, and Cool Canadian(R) Water. Leading Brands recently undertook a major expansion into the United States, with its US headquarters located in Stamford, CT. Its subsidiary, Quick, Inc. is building a home replenishment and delivery system for the new economy.

Statements in this news release that are not historical are to be regarded as forward-looking statements which are subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially. Such risks and uncertainties with respect to the Company's business include general economic conditions, weather conditions, changing beverage consumption trends, pricing, and the availability of raw materials and economic uncertainties, including currency.

(1) 'Case' means a 144 oz case equivalent.

We Build Brands(TM)
(c)2002 Leading Brands, Inc.

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