The Food-Health Convergence

The Food-Health Convergence

Gary Hawkins, CART


Supermarket retailers have long realized the importance of health & wellness programs. Many retailers have placed dietitians in their stores as a resource for customers to assist with label reading, meal planning, and answering questions. Many of the same retailers have also implemented shelf-signage programs like the recently announced Guiding Stars program at Ahold; products throughout the store labelled with a star rating that provides guidance to customers as to the nutritional value offered.

While helpful, programs like Guiding Stars are being superseded by efforts making use of the vast data attribution possible today from companies like Label Insight. Label Insight uses AI and machine learning to deconstruct the brief nutritional summary found on packaged foods to identify hundreds and even thousands of specific, granular nutrients, minerals, vitamins, and other chemicals found in our food products. This massive increase in available data is powering more evolved programs like that from Raley’s. Raley’s uses the extensive data attributes to identify products as helpful for specific health conditions, identifying items at the shelf and in their online shopping service.

But even this effort is being supplanted by yet more extensive knowledge, data, and information. ScriptSave, which offers programs and services in more than 60,000 pharmacies across the U.S., is leveraging knowledge of prescriptions to accurately infer health conditions along with shoppers self-identifying health concerns, and in turn understanding specific nutritional requirements related to dozens of health conditions. 

ScriptSave’s Personalized Wellness initiative is a prime example of the convergence between the worlds of healthcare and food being made available by technology. Using the nutritional requirements related to specific health conditions, ScriptSave is able to filter the 40,000 products across the typical supermarket, identifying those that are beneficial to the individual shopper, making those recommendations available via available digital channels.

About the Author

As Founder and CEO of CART, Gary Hawkins has an unparalleled view to current and future innovation in fast moving consumer goods retail.

CART is Advancing Retail by connecting the industry to innovation. Retailers, wholesalers and brands utilize CART to find, research and connect with solutions appropriate for their businesses. Solution providers use CART as a go-to-market tool that connects them directly to their target retail audience, all the way into the brick and mortar store itself. CART has unparalleled insight into what’s next in retail and shares this information regularly through multiple channels. 

Retail Verticals:  Supermarket