Going The Extra Calorie

Great story in today’s New York Times about Hannaford Brothers, a New England-based grocery chain, doing their own nutritional ratings for more than 27,000 grocery items, giving them a straightforward zero to three-star rating based on its healthiness. The ratings are posted next to the items throughout the store. They exceed the FDA’s standards, and a number of major food conglomerates, promoting “healthy alternatives,” don’t score all that high.

The story is chock-a-block with great defensive quotes such as this one:

“We don’t like the idea that there are good and bad foods out there, and these sort of arbitrary rating systems,” said John Faulkner, director of brand communication at the Campbell Soup Company. The Healthy Request line of soup, he said, was “aligned with the government definition of what healthy is.”

Check this out not only to think about whether your healthy eats are as healthy as the box says they are, but also to consider what you can do in your business that goes beyond the minimum. In a highly competitive grocery market, where margins are thin, this is a bold and risky move by Hannaford. Kudos to them.