The research shows that there are large differences between the supermarket chains, regardless of their formula or market share. Lidl, Dirk, Coop and Ekoplaza lead the way; Albert Heijn, Jumbo, Aldi and Plus are less far.
The general picture is that supermarkets do not discourage unhealthy choices enough:
● on average 82% of the offers in advertising brochures are unhealthy;
● candy and chocolate are there for the taking at almost all checkouts;
● supermarkets have not set themselves a clear goal of selling less unhealthy products.
The report also indicates what is going well at individual supermarkets. There is, for example, a supermarket chain that no longer offers unhealthy food at the checkout and another chain that uses Disney characters to make Disc of Five products attractive to children. In general, it appears that every supermarket could learn something from others.
These conclusions emerge from the study published today that was initiated and conducted by research foundation Questionmark, in collaboration with the Diabetes Fund, Hartstichting, Maag Lever Darm Stichting and Kidney Foundation, united in the Alliance Nutrition for the Healthy Generation.
Supermarkets have a major influence on diet
After smoking, an unhealthy diet is currently the second most preventable cause of death and healthy years of life lost. Questionmark and the Alliance for Nutrition for the Healthy Generation want healthy nutrition to become the norm. Charlotte Linnebank, Director of Questionmark: “It is crucial that people are better helped to eat healthily. 70 percent of our daily food comes from the supermarket. Supermarkets have a major influence on the choices people make. They can use that influence to help eat a healthy diet. Superlijst offers supermarkets the tools for this. “
Supermarkets do not keep their agreements
In the Prevention Agreement on Overweight (2018), supermarkets made commitments on the Wheel of Five, but Superlijst Health shows that supermarkets do too little to get their customers to eat healthily. Real pain points, such as children’s marketing of unhealthy products, are not vigorously addressed. In some product groups, for example for rice and pasta, few healthy variants can be found regardless of the supermarket.
Carolien Martens, spokesperson on behalf of the Alliance: “In order to be able to make annual adjustments and possibly take additional measures, we attach great value to monitoring based on measurable data about goals. We see the Health Superlist as a baseline measurement that makes it clear that there are enormous opportunities for every supermarket to actually become a healthy supermarket. “