Chocolate in a new light

October 21, 2011

Should your store re-merchandise chocolate? It just might be a great idea – find out why here.

Sweets often get a bad rap, and for good reason, but there are some sweets that are worth a second look; not surprisingly chocolate is one of them. A recent study of over 33,000 Swedish women found that the more chocolate women said they ate, the lower their later risk of stroke. The results of this study add to a growing body of evidence linking cocoa consumption and cardiovascular health. Other studies have demonstrated a blood pressure lowering affect as well as LDL lowering affect of consuming cocoa - both risk factors for strokes.
Chocolate comes in many different packages, combinations, formulations and as expected all chocolate products are not created equal.  The best choices include those with over 70% cocoa and less sugar and other ingredients that are typically found in chocolate bars at the checkout. The higher the percentage of cocoa, the higher the flavanols, antioxidants and nutrients the chocolate bar contains.
Researchers do reveal that the observational design of their study limits the direct connection between chocolate and decreased stroke risk, but they definitely believe there is a link.
So where is most of the chocolate sold in the supermarket? At the checkout or candy aisle. Most who are health conscious or trying to steer away from candy turn their head at the checkout and wouldn’t dare step foot into the candy aisle – it’s time to merchandise chocolate, specifically dark chocolate, with other health food in center aisles - also currently struggling with low traffic. Create a heart healthy section stocked with whole grains, great oils, seasonal fruits and veggies, and chocolate topped off with videos or QR codes that explain the benefits of each food in the section.
Giving chocolate and the center aisles a new light is sure to interest customers and draw traffic and purchases.