Serving Up Health and Wellness in the Fresh Department Jun 12, 2018 By: Rick Stein, Vice President, Fresh, FMI and Sue Borra,RD, Executive Director, FMI Foundation, Chief Health and Wellness Officer, FMI Like cheese and wine, peanut butter and jelly, and fish and chips, consumers pair health and wellness with fresh foods. Retailers can capitalize on this pairing by assisting shoppers as they turn to fresh categories to meet their healthy-eating aspirations (Power of Foodservice at Retail 2018, Power of Produce 2017). To meet this need, FMI’s Fresh Foods team and Health and Wellness team have joined forces to create the Best Practices and Excellence in Fresh Department Health & Wellness Programming: Meeting consumer needs and driving business success guide. Health and wellness and fresh foods departments working together create incredible opportunities to better serve customers. Health and wellness in food retail has evolved into a key driver in food purchase decisions. According to the U.S. Grocery Shopper Trends 2017 report, 78 percent of shoppers are concerned about the nutritional content in the food they eat. In addition, 45 percent of shoppers surveyed see their primary store as an ally when it comes to their wellness journey. Food retailers, through their fresh departments, have the opportunity to offer delicious, nourishing and convenient meal solutions for families that focus on healthy eating principles. Convenience also remains a key driver of food sales for busy shoppers. Deli/fresh prepared food is the fastest growing area in the fresh departments and incorporating healthier choices and wellness messaging can enhance sales. This new best practices guide details key elements of success to drive sales and loyalty; profitable partnerships and resources; food retail examples of excellence from better-for- you- products to strong partnership programs; and, strategies to create a culture of health and wellness in fresh departments to meet shopper needs. To start exploring the report, visit our webpage. For more information on FMI’s Fresh Foods program, click here, and to learn more about FMI’s Health and Wellness program, click here.