And here are our Top Ten that we feel should be considered by all Supermarkets.
1. For 2016 we urge all supermarkets to eliminate those pesky and wasteful weekly circulars and go all digital, for the good of the environment and our trash cans
2. That every supermarket has a registered dietitian available to help shoppers make better choices and navigate the aisles and all those claims on packages
3. Become more proactive and thoroughly research the health, sourcing and sustainability claims that a product makes and refuse to put it on their shelves if a claim is not true
4. That supermarkets understand they serve as the center of a community and reach out in all areas to promote healthier eating and saving money
5. Make an effort to move junk food items tempting (for children especially) away from the the checkout lines
6. Make it part of your commitment to your customers to provide them with un-biased, accurate, current, science-based information about the production of food products and be willing to support and suggest products that support your customers’ personal preferences
7. Support employees with fair wages and appropriate sick days, which will also protect your customers for food safety risks especially in prepared foods, bakery, deli and grocerant departments
8. Always work to improve the efficiency and reach of communications with shoppers when it comes to recalls, don't ignore the recall and be proactive with email and phone outreach to protect your shoppers
9. Participate in modern technology via social media, blogging, apps, building your website, in order to better reach your customers and build on your virtual community
10. Build your store's exclusive brands with quality, sustainability efforts, support of community charities and a solid and healthier nutritional profile
And taking a look at a recent story in NPR’s The Salt, we noted two “foods of the future” trends from over a hundred years ago:
In 1896, the Indiana Progress wrote how French chemist Marcellin Berthelot proposed that we create "chemical food," doses of nitrogen and carbon that would supply the same nutrients as, say, a beefsteak. He simply said "When the era of chemical food comes, we shall have done with symposia and supper parties, Welsh rabbits and golden bucks."
In 1900, a Boston Globe article depicted a future in which there would be home delivery of food through tubes. While a McDonald's location in Edina, Minn., used the technology to deliver food to cars in its drive-thru, the technology never caught on.
Here’s to a Happy, Healthy, Prosperous and Safe 2016 from all of us here at SupermarketGuru.