Nutrition Rating System Helps Students, Faculty, Easily Identify Healthy Foods
Guiding Stars, the world’s first store-wide nutrition navigation system, today announces a partnership with University of New Hampshire (UNH) in Durham, NH. The good-better-best nutrition rating system is now being used in all of the school’s dining facilities.
With the help of Guiding Stars, each prepared meal, salad bar and grab-and-go item served by UNH’s dining facilities will receive a zero-to-three star rating according to its nutritional value, offering diners a simple, at-a-glance tool that quickly identifies the most nutritious foods. UNH Dining’s nationally recognized food program focuses on healthy eating and sustainable initiatives.
“We praise UNH’s ongoing commitment to providing nutritious meal options and health information to their students,” said Misty Smalley, client services manager at Guiding Stars Licensing Company. “We are excited to make it even easier for diners to navigate the cafeteria and make nutritious choices, as well as continue UNH’s mission to help students maintain a healthy lifestyle.”
Guiding Stars utilizes a proprietary algorithm that is grounded in evidence-based science and the most current guidelines and recommendations of leading national and international health organizations, such as the FDA and USDA. The system credits all edible foods based on the presence of vitamins, minerals, dietary fiber and whole grains, and debits for the presence of trans fat, saturated fats, cholesterol, added sugars and added sodium. Food items are then awarded zero, one, two or three stars – one star means good nutritional value; two stars, better nutritional value; and three stars, the best nutritional value.
“At UNH we offer our students, faculty and staff a variety of healthy and tasty options in our dining halls, as well as guidance and information to help them make healthy choices,” said Jon Plodzik, director of dining at University of New Hampshire. “Guiding Stars is a natural fit for our dining facilities, and we hope that it will help our students and staff think more holistically about their food choices.”
The Guiding Stars system was the first of its kind when implemented in select grocery stores in September 2006 in response to consumer demand for a simple, easy-to-understand tool for making good nutritional choices as they shop. The Guiding Stars program is now on shelf tags and signage in grocery stores throughout the Northeast, Southeast, Mid-Atlantic and Florida, and has also recently launched the first nutrition navigation system in a public school in MSAD 75 in Topsham, Maine, and Bates College in Lewiston, Maine in April.
About Guiding Stars Licensing Co.
Since 2006, Guiding Stars has been leading the way in helping consumers make nutritious choices by pioneering the first-ever storewide nutrition navigation system. The Guiding Stars program is a simple, easy-to-understand tool for making good nutritional choices and is designed to make a positive and lasting impact on public health. Guiding Stars Licensing Co., based in Scarborough, Maine, creates opportunities for supermarkets, manufacturers, food service providers and other organizations to license the program and make nutritious shopping simple throughout the United States. Guiding Stars is currently in more than 1,400 supermarkets up and down the East Coast including 1,177 Food Lion Stores in the Southeast and Mid-Atlantic, 167 Hannaford locations in the Northeast and 108 Sweetbay stores in central and western Florida. The program is supported by a 15-person team with significant licensing, marketing, food retail, IT and customer service experience.
About the University of New Hampshire
The University of New Hampshire, founded in 1866, is a world-class public research university with the feel of a New England liberal arts college. A land, sea and space-grant university, UNH is the state’s flagship public institution, enrolling 11,800 undergraduate and 2,400 graduate students.