We are currently in the midst of a combined health, financial and climate crisis. Not only is this stressful for consumers, it can also prove to be challenging for retailers who may be struggling to meet all of their shoppers’ complex and rapidly evolving needs.
In the second of our two-part series, we take a look at the current climate crisis, and how retailers can help shoppers eat better without it costing the earth.
Planet & Price
The global climate crisis has been steadily escalating over the past number of years, with numerous studies suggesting that diets in wealthier countries need to change in order to become more sustainable.
Food production has a huge impact on our environment and is a major contributor to greenhouse gas emissions1. The global climate crisis is also negatively affecting our food and water systems, increasing the likelihood of failed crops and reduced food and water availability, the effects of which also play into the economic difficulties we are currently facing.
In June 2022, the CEO of IGD suggested that although we are in the midst of a financial crisis, the grocery industry has an opportunity to “lead” on sustainability. And they’re right – by offering healthier, lower cost products that align with sustainability goals, retailers can make it easier for consumers to buy better for their health, their pockets and for the planet.
Three ways retailers help their customers with the dual issues of affordability and sustainability:
|1. Plant-based for the planet
Animal products, such as red meats and dairy products, reportedly produce the highest emissions2, with their plant based counterparts tending to have a lower environmental impact. Therefore, offering plant based alternatives can help reduce the overall carbon footprint of our diets. One study showed that choosing Quorn® mince instead of beef mince could reduce the carbon footprint by around 25 times3, whilst being lower in saturated fats, and at a comparable price point in many retailers.
|2. Promote long-life products
Long-life plant based drinks like unsweetened soya instead of fresh cow’s milk can be a great environmentally friendly switch at a similar price point per litre. Soya drinks have been shown 4 to have a lower environmental impact compared with cow’s milk, and their longer shelf life can help reduce food waste. Canned beans and pulses are a convenient way to add plant based protein into the diet whilst reducing the meat content. For example, a chilli sin carne using tinned kidney beans in place of beef not only reduces the meat content but is a great way to eat more fibre, whilst reducing the overall cost and being better for the planet. Frozen foods have a much longer shelf life when compared with fresh products. Choosing frozen fruits and vegetables can reduce food waste, which is beneficial for the planet and also the consumer’s pocket. They’re also a great way to help meet our fruit and vegetable consumption targets.
|3. Make sustainable foods easier to identify
Highlighting a range of foods that help meet sustainability goals can be achieved with in-store and online signposting, or by implementing more advanced like-for-like product swap and recommendation features.
Retailers can quickly and easily bolt-on plug & play solutions designed to help their customers find affordable, healthy food.
“Leverage the other solutions that are around you. Yes, great – you control the platform, but if you can bolt on other pieces of technology that are going to enrich that experience, by all means do it. That is what’s going to make you different than the others.”
– Sylvain Perrier, CEO, Mercatus Technologies
Intelligent solutions that work for everyone
Through its intelligent intervention products, Spoon Guru remains committed to supporting shoppers looking for products that meet their dietary needs. We work with our retail clients to enrich their product data, ensuring shoppers can view the right product at the right time.
Our Health+ solution places your health and sustainability strategy at the heart of every customer’s shopping journey. We offer tailored, modulaised components that touch every aspect of your customers’ journey from physical stores through to web & app.
We work with you to understand your goals, your health mission, as well as analysing where customer needs are not met from a dietary and health perspective. These interventions not only increase your customer loyalty but promote revenue generation in a positive way. What’s more Health+ is developed in a way that ensures you have the correct tools for your market, organisation and the support necessary to make these interventions a success.