Aldi boss: Healthier tills more popular than candy ones
Aldi had trialled healthier tills, stocking dried fruit, nuts, juices and water, for 16 weeks at selected stores from February to June this year.
“It quickly showed that healthier foods prove more popular with our shoppers than the traditional checkout offer of confectionery and sweets,” said Giles Hurley, joint managing director of corporate buying at Aldi.
Ofcom’s health criteria
From January 2015, only non-confectionery products that meet the Office of Communications (Ofcom’s) health criteria will be sold in Aldi’s checkout zone.
Unhealthy foods under Ofcom’s Nutrient Profiling Model (available here) include confectionery, potato chips including low-fat versions and cookies.
Healthy foods include takeaway salads with no dressing or croutons, fresh fruits and most nuts.
Traffic light provisos
Aldi will only stock foods at checkouts scoring red or amber on front of pack traffic light labelling if nutrients are naturally occurring. But products with more than one red light will not be displayed.
Aldi is signed up to the UK’s voluntary front-of-pack traffic light labeling. The system was adopted by Mars and Nestlé but rejected by Mondelēz. The European Commission is investigating whether the UK system is incompatible with EU law.
Products at Aldi checkouts must also meet the UK government’s Responsibility Deal salt targets.
Aldi told us its private label chewing gum (6 pack) and Wrigley Extra Chewing Gum will remain at the tills. Sugar free gum from Wrigley survived an earlier confectionery checkout purge at Lidl.
Most major UK supermarkets have now removed confectionery from their tills. Marks & Spencer, Asda and Morrisons are the only big supermarkets still to stock confectionery at cash counters. However, Sainsbury’s still sells confectionery at cash registers in its smaller stores.
Pressure from health bodies