Raley's Shelf Guide on-line
Raley’s Shelf Guide combines current food trends and research to set standards for packaged foods claims and provide transparency.

Retailers are adding transparency

The focal point of the Food Marketing Institute’s U.S. Grocery Shopper Trends 2017 report is transparency. The research, according to the trade association, signals that U.S. consumers want more than just information from the companies that produce the products they buy. They also want a level of transparency that offers assurances of food safety, health and wellness and ethics in the production of those products.

The regional retailer Raley’s, West Sacramento, Calif., is the latest supermarket chain to adopt a transparency initiative to better inform its customers about the products the company sells. Its Shelf Guide combines current food trends and research to set standards for packaged foods claims and provide transparency.

“We knew that Raley’s could develop a program that truly addresses the needs of our customers and serve as a trusted adviser,” said Michael Teel, chief executive officer. “Raley’s Shelf Guide attributes will help our customers make easier decisions when shopping our stores. Only foods that meet the strict standards of Raley’s will qualify for the Shelf Guide tags. I challenge food manufacturers to aspire to meet our Shelf Guide standards for their products at Raley’s.”

Raley's Shelf Guide
Raley’s Shelf Guide program uses simple and colorful icons to help customers quickly interpret whether a product meets their needs, without having to analyze multiple labels.

For ease of use, icons are placed directly on a product’s shelf tag that also displays its price. The top two icons are shared on the tag in-store. Customers seeking value at the shelf now will be able to use the Shelf Guide to identify an option at an affordable price that they perceive to be better.

The program was independently developed by Raley’s in partnership with Label Insight.

“Many consumers are driven by health and wellness goals, including special diets and ingredient allergies and aversions,” said Ronak Sheth, chief customer officer at Label Insight. “Raley’s Shelf Guide has taken Label Insight data to the next level by using rigorous criteria designed by a certified dietitian to evaluate product ingredients and processing. Raley’s has gone above and beyond typical ‘organic’ or ‘non-G.M.O.’ attributes to include criteria for sodium, sugar and fiber content by individual category, making them unique in the industry.”