Nutrition and Wellness

Convergence Project on Nutrition and Wellness

The Project

Beginning in 2012, the Project on Nutrition and Wellness (PNW) brought together food manufacturers, public health experts, food retailers, community groups, healthcare providers, consumer advocates, health insurers, and others to explore cross-sector approaches to improve American diets in order to reduce obesity, diabetes, and other nutrition-related problems.

Through our dialogue-leading-to-action process, the group determined that they could address this significant public health issue by utilizing market forces to increase consumer demand for healthier foods. They could encourage consumers to eat healthier by buying healthier – a goal they all shared and an idea that wasn’t receiving enough attention in the marketplace.

PNW stakeholders moved this agenda forward by commissioning new consumer research, identifying marketing opportunities to grow sales of healthier foods, conducting pilot tests in grocery and convenience stores, and developing tools for the grocery retail industry to help shift consumer demand toward healthier eating.

In June 2017, the Project on Nutrition and Wellness released its final report to highlight the impact of cross-sector collaboration in addressing a major public health issue and shared the accomplishments of PNW.

    PNW developed two significant tools:

    PNW developed additional recommendations for cross-sector collaboration that would support this growing trend:

    • Develop a national campaign around healthy eating and living. The campaign would include marketplace and communications programs that reach consumers in multiple ways such as when food shopping, visiting the doctor or listening to public service announcements.
    • Design and promote large scale efforts to integrate food retail, nutrition and health care services by offering consumers a one stop shop for these services. Financial incentives such as coupons or dining points for the purchase of healthier foods could be built in.
    • Improve the wholesale supply chain for fresh foods nationwide to assist small retailers who often have limited access to fresh produce and other healthier items.
    • Assist small chains and independent stores that face challenges in promoting and marketing new products due to limited resources.