ARLINGTON, VA – Food Marketing Institute Foundation today unveils a pre-release of its 2019 Power of Health and Well-being in Food Retail, an exploration into the consumer mindset of what wellness means to them and what they expect from their grocery stores. The analysis explores the broader definition of “well-being,” as food retailers are increasingly perceived as an ally in their shoppers’ pursuits of health.

Sue Borra, RD, FMI chief health and wellness officer and executive director of the FMI Foundation, suggested that the overall topic of health and wellness is gradually expanding into “health and well-being.” Borra said, “Wellness is still a highly relevant term for our industry, but well-being has a broader definition, including aspects such as emotional health, energy levels, and sleep behaviors.”

“At FMI, health and well-being is a core competency and practice that influences the very fiber of our programs – from mining consumer insights across all areas of the store and online to strategizing about shopper expectations from retail. The Power of Health and Well-being at Retail tells a dynamic story of how food retailers are meeting consumer desires for taste and enjoyment, discovery and mindful connection.”

Highlights include a compilation of consumer insights from relevant 2018 reports:

  1. Consumers have new wellness expectations from food retailers. This represents an opportunity for retailers to further advance their efforts to engage shoppers.
  2. Consumers broadly eye food as “medicine” to boost health. However, the details play out differently by consumer demographics, including with different generations.
  3. Consumers believe in the health and social benefits of eating meals at home with family.
  4. Shoppers exhibit strong opinions about food labels, health, and transparency.
  5. Consumers are increasing their requirements for transparency, both for ingredients within packages and information about sourcing, animal welfare, and other factors that go beyond ingredients.
  6. Consumers trust guidance from retail dietitians and other health professionals.
  7. Consumer feedback indicates that retailers have a big role to play in advancing total-store wellness strategies, both in bricks and mortar and online.
  8. Retailers recognize the crucial importance of health and wellness to their businesses, but there is more they can do, including digging deeper into consumers’ unmet needs and getting an early handle on the behaviors of younger generations.
  9. Retailers should pursue total store wellness strategies, advancing consumer education, embracing local marketing, building health partnerships, and further enhancing consumer trust.