Editor’s Note

With its strong, simple messages that focus on increased consumption of fruits and vegetables, whole grains, seafood and fiber-rich plant-based proteins like cooked, dry beans, nuts and seeds, the long-awaited release of the government’s Dietary Guidelines for Americans last week takes a significant step toward helping consumers become more mindful of the importance of calorie- , portion- and sodium-control, as well as physical activity.

While many of the individual recommendations in the new guidelines are similar to other recent versions, the new guidelines -- which advise consumers to maintain calorie balance over time with nutrient-dense foods -- offer retailers great opportunities to enhance their health and wellness halos by playing up displays of nutritionally rich foods throughout the store.

In addition to the industry’s leading trade associations that are vigorously applauding the news (coverage of which appears here), a host of other commodity boards and growers’ organizations are also cheering the news while poising to help retailers tout naturally wholesome foods that pack positive nutrients while minimizing added sugars, saturated fat and sodium.

Aside from the new Dietary Guidelines for Americans, other recent developments, including the voluntary front of package label initiatives and new federal menu labeling requirements, indeed present exciting new opportunities for the supermarket industry’s various allied trading partners, and we look forward to sharing continuing coverage of the many related developments set to unfold in the weeks and months ahead.

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