Daily Table and Stop & Shop share positive experience with the Gus Schumacher Nutrition Incentive Program (GusNIP) produce prescription project (PPR) and the growing importance of food-as-medicine
Washington, D.C. – The National Grocers Association Foundation Technical Assistance Center (NGAF TA Center) has partnered with two northeastern grocery chains to create testimonial and informational videos highlighting the growing food-as-medicine movement and the GusNIP PPR project.
Daily Table, a non-profit community grocery chain with a mission to make healthy food affordable to all, has been running a PPR project for several months through a partnership with Boston-based non-profit About Fresh and has found it to be highly beneficial to its community members.
“This partnership has made a huge impact for our community,” said Michael Malmberg, chief operating officer of Daily Table. “We’ve had a lot of customers say they’re able to afford more fresh produce, stretch their budgets a lot further and feel better, eat healthier, and that it’s overall an amazing program.”
While produce prescription projects are beneficial to customers, they are also advantageous to the stores operating them. Malmberg spoke to the ease of implementation, point of differentiation and the increase in produce and overall store sales as positive reasons to participate. “You really stand out in the marketplace with a unique offering,” he said, “and it’s the right thing to do in helping our community afford more fresh produce.”
Stop & Shop, a northeastern grocery chain with more than 400 stores, has also recently partnered with About Fresh to offer the GusNIP PPR project, but sees such food-as-medicine efforts as only just beginning. “This is the first of many programs we’re going to use, and innovate, and try to drive healthier sales and help our customers live healthier lives,” said Director of External Communications Jen Brogan. “We really hope that others in the industry join us in this effort.”
The project was implemented through About Fresh’s new Fresh Connect platform. Through this platform, healthcare teams can “prescribe” food-insecure patients who are either on, or are eligible for, SNAP or Medicaid, and whose health conditions could be improved by eating more fruits and vegetables with a prepaid Fresh Connect debit card that can be used to purchase healthy foods at participating stores. These stores are fully reimbursed by About Fresh for all qualifying purchases redeemed by PPR patients.
The GusNIP produce prescription project offers grocers a chance to positively impact their customers while also providing numerous benefits to the stores who offer them. These programs will only continue to grow as the food-as-medicine movement picks up steam and healthy food offerings and access are prioritized.
To share these stories and engage more retailers in implementing produce prescription projects in their stores and focusing on the future of food-as-medicine, the NGAF TA Center has created two videos; one sharing the ways in which the project serves as an asset both to stores and to their community members, and one highlighting the future of food-as-medicine (closed captioning available).
To learn more about produce prescriptions and how to bring them to your store, visit here.
About the NGA Foundation Technical Assistance Center
As a proud partner of the Nutrition Incentive Hub, the NGAF TA Center helps address the challenges grocers and supermarket operators face in establishing nutrition incentive and produce prescription projects. The NGAF TA Center is a resource for grocers and supermarket operators across the country and there are no fees or NGA membership requirements for use of technical assistance services. Learn more at www.ngaftacenter.org.
About the NGA Foundation
The NGA Foundation is the 501(c)(3) nonprofit arm of the National Grocers Association. The foundation provides independent retailers with tools to develop more effective recruiting programs, enhance retention efforts and bolster professional leadership development opportunities for employers.
Washington, D.C.-based NGA is the national trade association representing the retail and wholesale community grocers that comprise the independent sector of the food distribution industry. An independent retailer is a privately owned or controlled food retail company operating a variety of formats. The independent grocery sector is accountable for about 1.2 percent of the nation’s overall economy and is responsible for generating more than $250 billion in sales, 1.1 million jobs, $39 billion in wages and $36 billion in taxes. NGA members include retail and wholesale grocers located in every congressional district across the country, as well as state grocers’ associations, manufacturers and service suppliers. For more information about NGA, visit www.nationalgrocers.org.
About the Nutrition Incentive Hub
The Nutrition Incentive Hub is a coalition of partners, created by the Gus Schumacher Nutrition Incentive Program Training, Technical Assistance, Evaluation, and Information Center (GusNIP NTAE Center), that supports nutrition incentive projects, including SNAP incentives, and produce prescription projects. The GusNIP NTAE Center is led by Gretchen Swanson Center for Nutrition. In partnership with Fair Food Network, they assembled the Nutrition Incentive Hub, a coalition of evaluators, researchers, practitioners, and grocery and farmers market experts from across the country dedicated to strengthening and uniting the best thinking in the field to increase access to affordable, healthy food to those who need it most. The GusNIP NTAE Center is funded through a cooperative agreement and is supported by Gus Schumacher Nutrition Incentive Program grant no. 2019-70030-30415/project accession no. 1020863 from the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture.
About Stop & Shop
A neighborhood grocer for more than 100 years, Stop & Shop offers a wide assortment with a focus on fresh, healthy options at a great value. Stop & Shop’s GO Rewards loyalty program delivers personalized offers and allows customers to earn points that can be redeemed for gas or groceries every time they shop. Stop & Shop customers can choose how and where they want to shop – in-store or online for delivery or same day pickup. The company is committed to making an impact in its communities by fighting hunger, supporting our troops, and investing in pediatric cancer research to help find a cure. The Stop & Shop Supermarket Company LLC is an Ahold Delhaize USA Company and employs 58,000 associates and operates more than 400 stores throughout Massachusetts, Connecticut, Rhode Island, New York and New Jersey. To learn more about Stop & Shop, visit www.stopandshop.com.
About Daily Table
Founded in 2012 by Doug Rauch, former president of Trader Joe’s, Daily Table is a nonprofit community grocer dedicated to providing fresh, tasty, and nutritious food to communities most in need at prices everyone can afford. Daily Table stores source high-quality food and make it available to everyone at prices designed for even a SNAP budget and provide a shopping experience that empowers people to eat well with the power of their own dollars. Daily Table has three locations in Dorchester’s Codman Square, Roxbury’s Nubian Square, and its newest location in Cambridge’s Central Square. www.dailytable.org
About Fresh and the Fresh Connect Solution
About Fresh is a Boston-based nonprofit committed to expanding access to the high-quality, fresh food that is vital to people’s health, wellbeing, and culture. About Fresh partners with health systems and civic leaders to expand access to fresh, culturally relevant food for people who need it most. Fresh Connect is About Fresh’s latest innovation that enables healthcare organizations to cover the cost of fresh food for patients where they already shop, helping improve health outcomes and support overall wellbeing. Composed of a prepaid debit card funded by healthcare institutions and a HIPAA-compliant platform, Fresh Connect empowers patients who are experiencing food insecurity with the resources, convenience, and agency to purchase culturally connected, fresh food that supports their health at local retailers throughout Massachusetts.