Guiding Stars and healthyAisles Combine with Project 18 to Help Shoppers Easily Identify Healthier Foods
Guiding Stars®, the world’s first store-wide nutrition navigation system, today announces a partnership with Marsh Supermarkets, Vestcom’s healthyAisles® attribute system and Project 18. The new, first-of-its-kind collaboration will empower Marsh shoppers to make informed decisions about healthier food choices.
“We have a strong commitment to family nutrition, and we continue to evolve with our customers’ needs and nutrition goals,” said John Kelly, senior vice president, marketing, Marsh Supermarkets. “We want to help Hoosiers improve their health, and have a strong commitment to reducing the state’s obesity rate. The partnership with Guiding Stars and healthyAisles will strengthen our unique nutrition and wellness offerings by providing in- store tools that make shopping for nutritious foods easier.”
At 67 Marsh Supermarkets throughout central Indiana, Guiding Stars, healthyAisles and Project 18 will be featured on shelf tags to help shoppers easily identify foods that fit in to their healthy lifestyle. With Guiding Stars, each item throughout the grocery store receives a zero-to-three star rating according to its nutritional value, offering busy shoppers a simple, at-a-glance tool that helps them quickly identify foods that offer the most nutrition for the calories. The healthyAisles program provides nutrition information that showcases products that are gluten free, heart healthy, low sodium, organic or whole grains to address individual dietary or lifestyle needs. Project 18 is a collaboration between Marsh Supermarkets and Peyton Manning Children’s Hospital at St. Vincent to help kids eat smarter and get active.
“We are pleased to join Marsh Supermarkets, healthyAisles and Project 18 to help shoppers navigate the supermarket to find healthy foods that fit into their lifestyle needs.” said John Eldredge, director of brand & business development at Guiding Stars Licensing Company. “We know that it can be difficult for many families to find healthy foods in the supermarket, and this collaboration showcases Marsh’s commitment to making nutritious food shopping easy, practical and fun.”
“We are equally excited to work with Marsh Supermarkets, Guiding Stars and Project 18 to address the growing shopper need for specific dietary information,” said Anissa Buckley, senior director at healthyAisles. “We believe this collaborative nutrition information system offers a best-in-class program for everyone.”
Guiding Stars was recently awarded patent protection for its 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.
Vestcom is partnered with the USDA and has developed healthyAisles in conjunction with both USDA and FDA guidance. The database supports interpretation of more than 30 different attributes that can be mixed and matched to enable a balanced nutrition program.
About Guiding Stars Licensing Co.
Since 2006, Guiding Stars has been leading the way in helping consumers make nutritious food choices and recently received a U.S. Patent for the Guiding Stars nutrition rating algorithm. The Guiding Stars nutrition guidance program is a simple, easy-to- understand tool for making good nutrition choices and is designed to make a positive and lasting impact on public health. Guiding Stars is currently in more than 1,600 supermarkets including Food Lion, Hannaford, Bloom, Sweetbay, Homeland, and Kings Super Market. Guiding Stars has also expanded into public schools, colleges and hospitals and appears on the Shopper mobile iPhone application. Additional information can be found at guidingstars.com.
About Marsh Supermarkets
Headquartered in Indianapolis, Marsh operates 72 Marsh, three O’Malia’s Supermarkets and 22 MainStreet Markets in Indiana and Ohio, with 40 Indiana pharmacy locations. Marsh has the distinction of being the first grocery store in the world to use electronic scanners to ring up purchases. Nearly 9,000 employees serve two million customers weekly. For more information visit www.marsh.net.
About Vestcom International, Inc.
Little Rock, Arkansas-based Vestcom is the leading provider of customized shelf- edge communications and specialized marketing services for the retail industry— delivering proven results and influencing shopper behavior at the point-of decision for the nation’s top retailers and their suppliers, processing more than 400 million price/ promotion updates per week through its 10 production facilities located across the United States. Recognized as one of America’s fastest growing private companies by the Inc 5000, Vestcom’s services benefit retail clients by reducing store operations expenses, increasing retail sales and coordinating in-store execution with retailers and their brand partners. For more information about Vestcom visit www.vestcom.com.
About Project 18
Project 18 is a collaborative effort with Marsh Supermarkets, St. Vincent Health, Peyton Manning Children’s Hospital and Strategic Marketing & Research, Inc. (SMARI). The project, which is named after Manning’s football jersey number, provides Indiana elementary schools with an 18-week health and wellness curriculum designed to address the major risk behaviors in third-grade to fifth-grade students. The program focuses on the areas of nutrition, physical activity and holistic health.