Sunday, 20 May 2012

Dear Coles, Your support to my health sucks

Dear Coles,
I did my grocery shopping online today. I love this system. You have done a great job implementing this tool which makes sure you are catering for people of all walks of life. Life is busy, and you get that.

You obviously don't understand the importance of eating healthy though. If you want to look after your customers and get them coming back, then I suggest you get behind the need for Australians to eat healthy. I mean, are you happy being a factor in the biggest health dilemma of our time?

As much as I love your store and your online shopping feature, I must admit, I am only loyal to you because of the specials and deals you can offer. I scanned the specials section whilst shopping online today, trying to squeeze the best out of my budget, and found myself quite disgusted at the amount of specials being offered on foods I would class as "junk" or "sometimes food".

I note that periodically through the year there are different themes highlighted in your specials, such as baby items or pet care. Have you ever thought of devoting a specials catalogue occasionally to healthy options? Have you given any thought to how expensive it is to eat healthy? Or, perhaps this would not be as profitable as appealing to the sugar addicted or the savoury munchers? Here's a tip; most of these people would eat better with a bit of encouragement from a Supermarket giant to add something healthy to their diet every couple of weeks.

I know you think you have your eye on the ball, offering recipes that appeal to families and those trying to look after their health, but with a bit of effort and commitment you could offer your customers so much more. How about highlighting the healthiest choice within a range of product? How about bonus shopper points for a trolley with a large number of healthy items? How about supporting the schools across the country trying to encourage healthy lunch box habits? How about a Nutritionist in your store to answer questions?

I am not saying that food choice is the only factor in the rise of obesity in Australia. There are other contributing factors, but the food portion is your area of expertise, and something you would do well to look into, should you wish to gain long-term customer loyalty. It is obviously not enough to make healthy foods available to the masses. People need help with making these foods affordable, with putting these foods together to get the benefits, with looking after their special dietary needs that the modern diet has contributed to, with choices and options best for their families' needs, with healthy food becoming the easy option again.

So, will you rise to the challenge? I hope I live long enough to see it happen, Coles.