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Raley’s Moving Sugary Cereals To The Bottom Shelf

A Raley's cereal aisle with shelf blades explaining the new product placement.

Raley’s continues to reimagine its grocery aisles with another move in the name of health and wellness. The retailer is changing the layout of its cold cereal aisles by giving prime placement to cereals with less added sugar, taking into account the amount of added sugar respective to the calorie count and serving size. Cereals with 25 percent or more of their total calories coming from added sugar, based on a standardized one cup serving of cereal, will be moved to the bottom shelf.

Raley’s says it is committed to promoting transparency to help customers make better decisions for their personal wellness journey. Today’s consumer is taking a hands-on approach to their health. Americans are reading labels and following nutrition guidelines and are conscious of their sugar intake. According to Nielsen, 22 percent of households are restricting sugar intake, while 52 percent are actively trying to avoid artificial sweeteners.

“We know that the changes in Raley’s stores can positively influence our customers’ choices,” said Keith Knopf, president and CEO. “Our team has thoughtfully developed a system to evaluate added sugar in cold cereals. We believe between education and product placement, we can help more customers identify and avoid added sugar.”

In partnership with Label Insight, Raley’s developed a sugar filter equation to guide the product placement on shelf. Using the Nutrition Facts Label and a standardized one-cup serving size, Raley’s considered the total calories and total added sugars. This equation identified which cold cereals are “Higher in Added Sugar,” labeled with blue shelf tags, and which ones are “Lower in Added Sugar,” labeled with gold shelf tags.

“Studies have shown that added sugars may contribute to a diet that is high in calories but low in essential nutrients,” said Yvette Waters, MS, RDN, CISSN, and nutrition strategist and brand influencer for Raley’s. “As the resident nutrition expert, I’m passionate about helping our customers find better-for-you options.”

Raley’s has added a series of shelf blades down the aisle to communicate the placement change to customers and to increase awareness about added sugars in food. The retailer also is working to increase sugar awareness through customer education with animated videos and content marketing at Most recently, Raley’s owner Mike Teel launched “Minute with Mike Teel,” a video series focusing on the amount of added sugar in food products and the need for change in the industry.

While Raley’s is starting in the cereal aisle, the company is analyzing calories coming from added sugar in all processed foods, and has plans to expand this strategy to additional categories.

Raley’s has made incremental changes to its stores over the years to make better-for-you products more readily available. In 2015, Raley’s eliminated the sale of tobacco in all its grocery stores. Raley’s “Shelf Guide” shelf tag program provides label transparency to help customers make informed food purchasing decisions. And earlier this year, Raley’s eliminated conventional candy from its check stands, reducing the overall sugar offerings by 25 percent.

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About the author

Alissa Marchat

A word nerd, grocery geek and three-year member of The Shelby Report. She is a proud new homeowner and a great lover of avocado toast.

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