Wal-Mart Going on Health Kick

Mega retailer foods lower in salt, fat and sugar, lower fruit and vegetale prices

By Greg Wilson
|  Thursday, Jan 20, 2011  |  Updated 7:00 AM PDT
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Wal-Mart Going on Health Kick

Abby Gregory

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The nation's biggest food retailer is going healthy.

Wal-Mart plans to unveil a plan to promote healthier and less expensive food options at its stores. The plan will be shown to officials in Washington Thursday morning. The move comes as first lady Michelle Obama continues her campaign against child obesity.

The Bentonville, Ark., chain has said it plans to bring lower-priced, healthier foods to urban areas as it tries to expand in urban areas like Chicago, New York and Washington D.C.

Wal-Mart plans to make thousands of its packaged foods lower in salt, fat and sugar, and to lower prices on fruits and vegetables, according to The New York Times.

Given Wal-Mart's size, a move into healthier food could have a huge effect on customers and competitors, as well as suppliers, say experts.

“A number of companies have said they are going to make voluntary reductions in sodium over the next several years, and numerous companies have said they are going to try to get trans fat out of their food,” Michael Jacobson, executive director of Center for Science in the Public Interest, told the Times. “But Wal-Mart is in a position almost like the Food and Drug Administration. I think it really pushes the food industry in the right direction.”

Selected Reading

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Reuters

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The New York Times

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Walmart.com

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