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Ahold Stores Roll Out Healthful Food Icons

January 6, 2009
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Consumers in the nation’s Northeast region seeking to follow through on resolutions to eat healthier in the New Year can get some help at the grocery store just by scanning packages on the shelf. Stop & Shop, based in Quincy, Mass., and Giant Food LLC, headquartered in Landover, Md., said they are launching a “Healthy Ideas” on-package labeling system that enables shoppers to locate better-for-you products. Both companies are part of the Netherlands-based Ahold supermarket operation.

The new labels feature the “Healthy Ideas” name and a colorful green and blue logo to signal to buyers that certain products are deemed healthful, the companies said. All “Healthy Ideas” products - currently estimated at more than 3,000 items - meet federal guidelines for healthful foods and run the gamut from fresh produce to dairy products to packaged snacks.

“We feel it is a program that is more than a symbol - it's a lifestyle that allows customers to easily identify foods that are truly healthy, and we worked closely with FDA and USDA to identify the criteria for healthy foods,” Giant Food spokesperson Jamie Miller told eReport editors. “We also feel it's very convenient for customers, particularly this time of year when many are aware of the importance of living healthy lifestyles.”

Other grocery chains have implemented similar health-oriented sub-brands in recent years. One example is the “Eating Right” family of products from Pleasanton, Calif.-based Safeway Inc. Most recently, Safeway teamed up with Warner Bros. Entertainment to produce a new line of “Eating Right” foods and beverages for kids, with packages emblazoned with different Looney Tunes characters.

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