There is rarely positive news about Walmart, but the last month seems to be an exception.
Most recently, it announced a 5 point plan with the First Lady directed towards improving the nutritional quality and affordability.
1. Reformulating thousands of everyday packaged food items by 2015 by reducing sodium 25 percent and added sugars 10 percent, and by removing all remaining industrially produced trans fats. The company will work with suppliers to improve the nutritional quality of national food brands and its Great Value private brand in key product categories to complete the reformulations;
2. Making healthier choices more affordable, saving customers approximately $1 billion per year on fresh fruits and vegetables through a variety of sourcing, pricing and transportation and logistics initiatives that will drive unnecessary costs out of the supply chain. Walmart will also dramatically reduce or eliminate the price premium on key “better-for-you” items, such as reduced sodium, sugar or fat products;
3. Developing strong criteria for a simple front-of-package seal that will help consumers instantly identify truly healthier food options such as whole grain cereal, whole wheat pasta or unsweetened canned fruit;
4. Providing solutions to address food deserts by building stores in underserved communities that are in need of fresh and affordable groceries; and
5. Increasing charitable support for nutrition programs that help educate consumers about healthier food solutions and choices.
They have also already been active with their “Fighting Hunger Together” campaign, using Facebook to encourage communities to compete for a $1.5 million dollars in prize money by “Liking” on Facebook.com. Salt Lake City won the contest, and Fresno, which led for most of the competition, came in second.
Walmart has also donated $3 million to Breakfast in the Classroom, to increase breakfast consumption among school children and hopefully improve associated outcomes related to food security.
On behalf of loseweightfighthunger.com, I’d like to congratulate Walmart on their efforts and look forward to their continued efforts to helping their communities.