PLEASANTON, Calif. — Safeway here has launched “Lunchbox Winners,” an exclusive new program that will encourage kids to eat more fruits and vegetables by providing parents with easy solutions for school lunches and snack ideas. According to company officials, the development of the program was inspired by Safeway's efforts to support the Produce for Better Health Foundation's Fruits & Veggies — More Matters program and First Lady Michelle Obama's “Lets Move!” anti-obesity campaign.
“We've been involved with Produce for Better Health for a long time,” Teena Massingill, Safeway's corporate public affairs director, told SN, noting that Safeway is a past recipient of PBH's Retail Excellence Award, and has participated in numerous More Matters campaigns. “This seemed like a natural extension of that partnership.”
The program will run at all of Safeway's more than 1,500 locations, including Safeway, Vons, Genuardi's, Pavilions, Randalls, Tom Thumb, Dominick's and Carrs banner stores. Each month during the school year, Safeway will offer shoppers a new booklet filled with simple snack and lunchbox recipe ideas, along with tips from athletes on ways to stay active.
All of the fruits, vegetables and other products needed to prepare the recipes will be presented in Safeway's produce departments in either table displays or cooler displays, Massingill said.
During the month of September, Olympic soccer star Brandi Chastain will be featured in the brochures, sharing the recipe for her favorite post-workout snack, along with some tips on improving your soccer game. The featured athlete for October will be three-time Olympic gymnast Dominique Dawes, who is currently co-chair of the President's Council on Fitness, Sports & Nutrition.
“We are thrilled to see Lunchbox Winners, a fantastic example of how retailers can get ‘hands on’ with the effort to raise a generation of kids that are eating right and staying active,” Elizabeth Pivonka, president and chief executive officer of PBH said in a release.
Safeway has also created a new website for the program, www.lunchboxwinners.com, where parents can find recipes used in the program, and kids can send questions to the athlete of the month.
Current recipes include the “Get Jammin' Diggety Dog,” a banana in a whole wheat hot-dog bun spread with peanut butter and jelly, and a simple shredded carrot salad, with apples and raisins, and lemon juice to keep everything fresh.
“We have been focusing on health and wellness for a long time, and [Lunchbox Winners] goes hand in hand with our company's initiative to provide healthier options for our customers, as well as ideas for cooking and feeding their families healthier meals,” Massingill said.