IGA launches health and wellness program

IGA announced the launch of Better Choices, a new health and wellness program designed to give shoppers more information that helps them make healthier decisions.

The program will be featured on the retailer's microsite, igabetterchoices.com and will also be accessible through the IGA main site. Topics will include planning and shopping, wellness, food safety, recipes and how- to's. In addition, site visitors have access to a variety of tools, tips and information from sources such as the USDA, FDA, CDC and registered dietitian Kim Kirchherr, MS, RDN, CDE, FAND. 

Also featured on the site are games, downloads for kids and seasonal or themed sweepstakes highlighting food choices, or information on the different food groups from month to month.

For example, the June sweepstakes highlights Dairy Month, where shoppers can enter contests to win dairy coupons redeemable at IGA.

"Health and wellness is a personal journey, which means it's different for everyone," Kirchherr said. "We believe that this practical approach to information sharing through the igabetterchoices.com microsite will resonate with all of our customers, no matter where they are along their health-and-wellness journey. That's really our goal—to provide the tools and information so that we're making it easier and more fun for our shoppers to make better choices along the way." 

Kirchherr will reach out to local IGA retailers to help train them in the ever-changing health and wellness space.

"Today's consumers have an expectation that retailers can and should support their health-and-wellness goals, however those goals are defined," said IGA CEO Mark Batenic. "With this new program spearheaded by IGA Health & Wellness Advisor and Registered Dietitian Kim Kirchherr, we're providing information and resources that help shoppers make better choices that are right for them.

"And in the process of helping to meet our customers' health-and-wellness needs, we're creating a more relevant IGA brand overall that will put all of our IGA independent retailers in a position to increase shopper engagement, and consequently, sales."

IGA joins a growing list of supermarkets and drugstores that are launching or expanding their health and wellness programs based on consumer demand. In fact, 96 percent of the retailers said their companies are committed to growing wellness programs in their stores, according to Food Marketing Institute's (FMI) third annual Food Retailer Contributions to Health and Wellness survey.

In order to compete with the growing specialty food retailers that offer healthier options, such as Whole Foods (NASDAQ:WFM) and Sprouts, traditional grocers like IGA and big-box retailers need to adapt. For example, CVS Health (NYSE:CVS) just closed a deal with Target (NYSE:TGT) to buy out all of its pharmacies and clinics in order to expand the company's presence in the health and wellness category.

For more:
-See this IGA press release

Related stories:
Target, CVS partnership signals strategic shift
Retail clinics hit 10 million annual visits
CVS rolls out updated app
Grocers committed to health and wellness programs, survey says
Sprouts boosts sales 22% amidst healthy food trend
 

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