To make the healthy choice the easy choice and enable store guests to quickly and easily identify products that fit their lifestyle and nutrition needs, SpartanNash introduced Nutrition Pathways. Nutrition Pathways are 22 nutrition and lifestyle attributes designed to help SpartanNash customers more easily identify heart healthy, sustainable, nothing artificial, organic and other key product features in store and on

In Family Fare, D&W Fresh Market and VG’s Grocery stores, Nutrition Pathways attributes are now displayed at the bottom of all shelf tags, allowing store guests to quickly see up to four key attributes for every product. Martin’s Super Markets, Forest Hills Foods, Family Fresh Market, Dan’s Supermarket and all other SpartanNash-owned stores will launch Nutrition Pathways by March 2020.

“Our customers are looking for healthier choices – but it can be time consuming to read through nutrition facts panels and ingredient lists and difficult to know exactly what fits into your diet,” Chief Merchandising and Marketing Executive Lori Raya said. “With Nutrition Pathways, we’ve done all the hard work for you, so your shopping trips can be quick, convenient and, most importantly, fit within your lifestyle or wellness journey.”

SpartanNash Regional Wellness Specialists used industry standards as well as evidence-based nutrition guidelines to create the definition for each Nutrition Pathway. Many of the pathways highlight the most nutritious foods on the journey to well-being – whether store guests are managing a health condition, following a food lifestyle or just wanting to make healthier choices.

Consumers generally shop for products based on four stages of wellness2:

  1. General Wellness: Customers care about everyday healthy choices and eating a variety of foods.
  2. Sustainability: Customers care about the environment, how products are made, grown or raised and appreciate food transparency.
  3. Ailments: Customers’ shopping habits revolve around ailments such as heart disease or diabetes that drive them to eat or not eat certain foods, so they read labels and ingredient lists.
  4. Life Stage: Customers want to live longer and stay healthier by making smarter choices.

“What we eat is a huge contributor to many chronic diseases, and eating a healthier diet helps prevent and treat many of these conditions,” said Barbara Karenko, DO, Metro Health – University of Michigan Health. “Food works as preventative medicine to keep us healthy and is essential to a person’s well-being.”

Nutrition Pathways key attributes include:

  • Heart healthy – This product is considered ‘heart healthy’ by the American Heart Association (AHA) and contains less than 10 grams of added sugar per serving.
  • Five or less ingredients – This product has five or fewer ingredients.
  • High fiber – This product has at least five grams of fiber per serving.
  • Whole grain – The first ingredient in this product is a whole grain.
  • No added sugar – This product does not contain any added sugar.
  • Low sodium – This product has 140 mg or less sodium per serving.
  • Good source protein – This product contains at least five grams of protein.
  • Gluten free – This product is gluten-free.
  • Nut free – This product is free of tree nuts and peanuts.
  • Lactose free – This product does not contain any lactose.
  • Non-dairy – This product does not contain dairy or milk ingredients.
  • Free from – This product is free from the eight major allergens (milk, eggs, shellfish, fish, peanuts, tree nuts, wheat and soy), antibiotics, high fructose corn syrup, hormones, partially hydrogenated oil ingredients, pesticides, nitrates and nitrates.
  • Nothing artificial – This product does not contain artificial color, artificial flavor, artificial sweetener or artificial preservatives.
  • Vegan (plant-based) – This product does not contain animal by-products or any animal ingredients.
  • Kosher – This product is Kosher.
  • Organic – This product is considered organic.
  • Non-GMO – This product does not contain any genetically modified (GMO) ingredients.
  • Sustainable – This product has one of the following claims and/or certifications: B Corp, Biobased, BPA Free, Carbon Footprint, Dolphin Safe, Environmentally Friendly, Ethical, Fair Trade, Forest Stewardship Council, FSC, Marine Stewardship Council, Rainforest Alliance Cert, Sustainable Farming, Sustainable Fishing, Sustainable Forest Initiative, Sustainable Packaging, Sustainable Seafood or Wild Caught.
  • Fragrance free – This product does not contain fragrance ingredients based on a derived analysis of the ingredient statement or makes a fragrance-free claim. You will find this pathway in the Beauty Care, Baby Care and Household Cleaners sections.
  • Hypoallergenic – This product claims to be hypoallergenic. You will find this pathway in the Beauty Care, Baby Care and Household Cleaners sections.
  • Paraben free – This product does not contain paraben ingredients based on a derived analysis of the ingredient statement or makes a paraben-free claim. You will find this pathway in the Beauty Care, Baby Care and Household Cleaners sections.
  • Meat first – The first ingredient in the ingredients statement of this product is identified to be a meat-containing ingredient. You will find this pathway in the Pet Food section.


On – SpartanNash’s proprietary, intuitive online grocery shopping solution available at 70 stores in six states – all Nutrition Pathways attributes are listed, allowing customers to filter products based on their lifestyles and nutrition needs.

Nutrition Pathways is part of SpartanNash’s “Living Well” initiatives, which also include an ever-growing assortment of organic offerings, free and reduced-cost prescriptions at their pharmacies, Kids Crew programming and Regional Wellness Specialists who serve company-owned retail stores and communities in Wisconsin, Minnesota, Michigan and the greater Omaha, Neb. area.

Wellness Specialists work with community partners and healthcare organizations to raise awareness about programs such as Nutrition Pathways and provide resources about nutrition and optimal food choices.

1 Nielsen Global Health and Ingredient-Sentiment Survey. (2016, August 30). Retrieved December 30, 2019, from

2 What's in our food and on our mind. (2016, August). Retrieved December 30, 2019, from

Source: SpartanNash