Two years in the making, Metro has launched an in-store and online guide that helps shoppers choose products that best fit their lifestyles and health needs.
The My Health My Choices program shares insights on nearly 9,000 products sold by the grocer and pharmacy leader in Quebec and Ontario. It classifies foods using such lifestyle attributes as vegan, gluten-free, non-GMO and nearly 50 others.
"Every month in Ontario, more than 1.3 million searches are made on the web in relation to the various attributes of My Health My Choices," said Mike Thomson, Metro vice president of grocery merchandising. "With this program, we're giving our customers the opportunity to choose foods that meet their own definition of wellness. The guide is designed to make their in-store or online shopping experience with us easier and more time efficient.”
The retailer worked with experts and specialists to design and implement the program, and Metro said it’s the only grocer in Canada to offer a food selection guide based on lifestyle and personal preferences through My Health My Choices. Shoppers can learn about the products by shopping online, through the My Metro mobile app, and by scanning bar codes of products in stores or at home. The retailer has also supported the program in stores with green signage directing shoppers to learn more but also by using green shelf tags that say if a product is gluten-free, for example, to help with quick identification.
The program helps shoppers choose among its store brand products and how they get classified as well as national brands.
"When you consider that 51% of Canadian adults regularly seek information on the quality, suitability and healthiness of the products they consume, a program such as this one is particularly important," said Linda Montpetit, a nutritionist and long-time collaborator of Metro. "Information on product packaging is not always easy for consumers to interpret. This program combines the information on the labels with the hidden qualities of the products. This will greatly simplify people's shopping experience and help them make informed decisions more easily."
The development of the program's classification criteria was based on research data, analyzing Canadian consumer trends, Canada's food guide, information published by regulatory bodies like Health Canada, and the standards for different dietary lifestyles. A product may include several attributes classified according to their level of importance.