Guiding Stars is expanding access to its nutritional value rating program to more Ahold Delhaize USA retail banners and to online shoppers. The program will launch in Giant Food, Giant-Martin’s, Stop & Shop and online grocery retailer Peapod on April 6.
The expansion is intended to help in-store and online customers eat healthier and save time grocery shopping. Guiding Stars aims to take the guesswork out of nutrition by simplifying food labels into one clear “good,” “better” or “best” rating.
“As more and more consumers prioritize nutrition and look to cook at home, Guiding Stars is an important tool in enabling consumers to easily locate nutritious foods,” said Jim McBride, director of the Guiding Stars program. “Guiding Stars serves as a visual reminder to achieve good nutrition. We’re delighted to work with four more grocery brands to help them make it easier for their customers to make more nutritious choices while they shop and achieve their healthy eating goals.”
Guiding Stars does not suggest to consumers what to buy but instead points them toward foods that have more vitamins, minerals, fiber, omega-3s and whole grains—and less trans fat, saturated fat, added sodium, added sugar and artificial colors.
Originally introduced at Hannaford Supermarkets in 2006 and expanded to Food Lion in 2007, Guiding Stars now will be available in Stop & Shop’s 410 stores in Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York and Rhode Island; Giant-Martin’s 171 stores in Pennsylvania, Maryland, Virginia and West Virginia; and Giant Food’s 166 stores in Virginia, Delaware, Maryland, and D.C.
Consistent with national policies, including the Dietary Guidelines for Americans and MyPlate, Guiding Stars scientifically evaluates foods and beverages for nutritional value. Its algorithm looks at specific attributes of foods that should be limited or encouraged and displays the rating on private brand product labels and the shelf tags and signs for regional and national brands.
To prepare for the program’s launch in these additional banners, data for more than 50,000 items was captured and assessed using the algorithm. In total, the Guiding Stars U.S. database has more than 93,000 rated products and recipes.