Ahold pledges transparency around healthier foods

Ahold Delhaize USA has revealed a major commitment to boost healthier food sales and publicly disclose the percentage of food sales from better-for-you options — including a focus on its own brands that will have more than half of them be compliant with its Guiding Stars nutrition rating over the next five years.

According to the Partnership for a Healthier America (PHA), which is working with the company on the initiative, it’s the largest pledge to increase healthier food sales and transparency from a grocery retailer in the United States.

“With this commitment, Ahold Delhaize USA has raised the bar for grocery retailers,” said Nancy E. Roman, president and CEO of Washington, D.C.-based PHA. “This is a win for consumers, through increased sales of healthier foods, and a win for public health through greater transparency of healthier sales data. When companies are committed to not only stocking healthier options, but also encouraging sales of those items, real change can happen.”

Under the commitment, Ahold Delhaize USA will work toward the following goals:

  • By June 2025, at least 54% of private-brand food sales, including unbranded bulk items at all Ahold Delhaize USA banners will achieve one, two or three stars through the Guiding Stars nutrition guidance program.
  • Starting this year and continuing annually, Ahold Delhaize USA will publicly reveal the percentage of total store food sales generated from all products, both private and national brand, that achieve one, two, or three stars through Guiding Stars, leading to greater transparency in regard to healthier food sales.

“Providing customers with affordable, nutritious food every day and leveraging our collective scale to move the needle on important public health issues is integral to our mission to make a local impact with a greater purpose,” said Brittni Furrow, Ahold Delhaize USA’s vice president of sustainable retailing and healthy living. “We look forward to this new partnership and working collaboratively to create a healthier America.”

“Guiding Stars is designed to help customers shop for foods with more nutrition,” observed Julie Greene, director of the Scarborough, Maine-based program. “By providing the threshold for better nutrition, Guiding Stars enables Ahold Delhaize USA to measure its efforts in this space.”

Carlisle, Pa.-based Ahold Delhaize USA is a division of Zaandam, Netherlands-based Ahold Delhaize, the parent company for Ahold Delhaize’s U.S. companies, consisting of Food Lion, Giant Food, The Giant Co., Hannaford, and Stop & Shop, as well as e-grocer Peapod; Retail Business Services, a U.S. support services company providing services to the brands; and Peapod Digital Labs, its ecommerce engine.