I attended the ACS Responsible Retailing Forum earlier this year and as you would expect the main focus of the day was of course on tobacco and alcohol. The issue that caught my attention most though was on the growing problem our society is having with obesity.
While the Government appears to have no current plans to bring in regulations to reduce the levels of obesity the comments made at the meeting did make me think that we may be seeing them in the future. Last year New York passed a law to regulate the size of super-size sugary drinks, although this has been suspended by a New York state judge.
I have picked up on this issue because a couple of years ago I noticed that I was beginning to put on a bit to much weight. Apparently it’s easy to get to one’s mid-forties and let these extra pounds become permanent. I decided that this would not be good for my future well being and did something about changing my diet. I read Good Calories, Bad Calories by Gary Taubes and discovered how different food types effect the body. I changed my diet and have lost the weight that I put on.
Discovering how different foods work has made me think about what we sell. We may not have aggressively reduced the ‘calorie heavy’ products, but I am thinking about the health implications of what we sell. This is beginning to effect the future strategy of my business.
For me the benefits of a good diet are obvious, my person goal is to avoid future health problems like diabetes, high blood pressure or other heart issues. As a retailer I think I have an obligation to my customers as well.