CARLISLE — This September, in an effort to bring families together for more meals, Giant Food Stores is supporting the FMI Foundation to launch their Family Meal campaign as part of National Family Meals Month.
Created by the FMI Foundation in 2015 on behalf of the nation’s food retailers, the goal of National Family Meals Month is to encourage families to enjoy at least one more meal together per week.
“Families are always juggling busy schedules and struggling to put a nutritious meal on the table — and Giant can help,” said Matt Simon, Giant vice president, marketing.
“We believe that bringing families together around the table strengthens the bonds that make up a healthy community.”
Frequent family meals increase self-esteem, a sense of wellbeing, positive social behaviors, and stronger family relationships.
The National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse at Columbia has found that kids who eat meals with their families four times a week or more earn better test scores and succeed in school. Family meals also fuel better nutrition. Families who share three meals a week increase their healthy foods consumption by more than 24 percent according to research gathered by FMI.
Throughout the fall, Giant nutritionists are highlighting easy meal solutions in-store and in the community, including ideas for eating healthy on a budget, while inspiring families to bring everyone together for one more family meal.
Wellness Walks, conducted by Giant nutritionists, share how families can capture the “power” with tips for easy-to-prepare dinners, ready-to-eat choices to help save time and fresh ideas to make mealtime fun.
Family meal ideas are featured in Giant’s weekly circular, while its digital app has personalized meals deals and money-saving coupons.
Another way Giant is helping families identify more nutritious food choices for themselves and their families is through its nutrition navigation program, Guiding Stars.
With symbols that are visible at a glance, Guiding Stars aims to take the guesswork out of nutrition by decoding labels into one clear rating. More than 9,000 items throughout Giant stores feature the star ranking system showcasing “good,” “better,” and “best” choices.
Giant has also been involved in the fight against hunger. “With September also being Hunger Action Month, Giant wants to make sure every family has the chance to come together around the table to share a nutritious meal,” added Simon.
Through strategic partnerships with local food banks, Giant has proudly donated back more than $50 million in monies and product to hunger relief organizations over the last five years.
As part of its signature and industry-leading Meat the Needs program, Giant stores safety freeze and donate quality meat to its regional food bank partners, which would otherwise go unsold.
More than one million meals have been diverted from landfills onto the plates of families in need through the Meat the Needs program.