A tag that says simply "Best" hangs next to a price tag for Dr. McDougall's oatmeal on a shelf at Giant Food. A tag below Diamond sliced almonds reads "Good," while another below a can of Amy's Organic Soups says "Great."
The designations are part of a ratings system the Landover-based grocer is testing in nine of its stores that measures the sustainability of food, both fresh and processed.
Giant's pilot program, developed by Brooklyn, N.Y.-based HowGood, comes as more and more consumers want to know how their food is grown and made, and retailers are looking for ways to give them information in a digestible way. One grocery analyst dubbed 2017 the year of sustainability for groceries as consumers begin to embrace the idea much as many started seeking organic products in recent years.
"Sometimes it can be difficult for consumers to read through the product label and understand exactly what the health benefits are," said Jamie Miller, a spokesman for Giant, the Baltimore area's largest supermarket chain. "This is a continuation of our commitment to make it easier to help customers identify healthier and more sustainable products that we offer."