Ahold’s rewards, programs fuel sales

Pharmacy retailers always are looking for ways to leverage the resources they have in order to attract customers, whether they’re drug stores, supermarkets or mass merchandisers. One supermarket operator is using its gas stations to bring customers to the counter.

Royal Ahold’s Giant-Carlisle, Giant-Landover and Stop & Shop customers who pay for their prescriptions out of pocket from most of the chain’s pharmacies can earn reward points that they can put toward car fuel purchases. Under Giant-Landover’s Gas Rewards program, for example, customers earn a point for every dollar they spend and get 10 cents off of every gallon of gas bought at Giant and participating Shell gas stations.

In addition to pharmacy programs, Ahold banners offer a number of health-and-wellness programs, using the innate ability of all supermarkets to promote healthy eating. In September, Giant-Carlisle and Martin’s Food Markets launched Passport to Nutrition, a Web-based program designed to educate children, their parents and teachers on nutrition and healthy lifestyles, including lessons that cover the food pyramid and physical activity, food labels and portion control, and how to eat a balanced diet. 

“Childhood obesity has become a growing health issue, and it’s important for both kids and their parents to understand what they can do to eat healthy and maintain an active lifestyle,” Giant-Carlisle health-and-wellness manager Shirley Axe said.

Meanwhile, Giant-Landover partnered with the YMCA of Metropolitan Washington to combat childhood obesity by encouraging healthy lifestyles, with Giant supporting the YMCA’s “Physical, Healthy & Driven” program, designed to help children ages 6 to 13 years integrate physical fitness and healthy eating into their daily routines. The YMCA will take its PHD on the Move mobile playground to several Giant-Landover locations throughout 2011, while the two are creating a Healthy Snack campaign to educate families about the pitfalls of snacking.

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