Big Y Helps NuVal Go to School

Public school cafeterias in Ansonia, Conn., will soon feature the NuVal Nutritional Scoring System, and Big Y Foods Inc. is assisting with the rollout.

Starting in January, foods sold at the cafeterias will feature a NuVal Score, a number between 1 and 100 that determines the nutritional value of the food, with a high score meaning that an item is high in nutrition. The scores will appear on popular cafeteria meals as well as on such items as drinks, crackers, vegetables and desserts.

Since launching NuVal at all of its stores in 2010, Springfield, Mass.-based Big Y, which operates supermarkets in Massachusetts and Connecticut, has worked to educate consumers on using the scores to improve their nutritional intake. “Offering NuVal Scores at Ansonia schools is a wonderful way to engage students and staff with their own nutrition and health,” said Carrie Taylor, the lead dietitian on the grocer’s Living Well Eating Smart Wellness Team. “At Big Y, we’re excited to continue the discussion and maintain the enthusiasm around NuVal Scores by showing families … how easy it is to trade up their grocery carts one food at a time.”

So far, the grocer "has helped in the production of the posters and shirts used to promote the system at Ansonia, but we're looking into other things they could do to provide educational awareness once the system fully launches in January," a NuVal spokesman told Progressive Grocer.

Available at more than 1,600 grocery stores nationwide, NuVal is currently in use in the Derby and Mansfield, Conn., school systems, in addition to cafeterias in Missouri, Minnesota and Tennessee. A grant from the Connecticut State Department of Education provided funding to support the rollout of the system in Ansonia schools.

NuVal LLC is a joint venture formed in 2008 by Elk Grove Village, Ill.-based Topco Associates LLC and Griffin Hospital, in Derby.

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