PHILADELPHIA — Due to an overload of nutrition information nowadays, consumers need simplicity and guidance about the right foods to buy to ensure their health and wellness. Giant Food Stores is doing its part to help shoppers with a comprehensive program in its stores, according to Tony Schiano, who last month retired as president and chief executive officer of the chain based in Carlisle, Pa.
“We are there when pressures converge — at the shelf where the [purchase] decision is made,” he said here last week at the first annual Food Industry Summit, sponsored by St. Joseph's University.
Schiano said consumers don't know how to obtain reliable information about nutrition at a time where there is so much misinformation in the media today. In addition, many consumers find that price is a barrier to good eating, because fresh foods and organic and natural products cost more that conventional items.
He said Giant is dedicated to providing solutions for heath and wellness through various programs, including:
A staff of nutritionists under the supervision of a director at headquarters.
Natural and organic products identified on the shelf with special tags.
Nature's Promise, a private-label line of 3,500 SKUs.
Healthy ideas available in brochures and a magazine, as well as on the chain's website.
The chain's Super Giant store in Camp Hill, Pa., is a “lab,” he said, for testing services that are later deployed in other stores. Programs include in-store nutritionists, health education classes, cooking classes, nutrition classes and tours, private consultations and appropriate sampling and demo events.