Helping Shoppers Meet Hydration Needs

Helping Shoppers Meet Hydration Needs

September 7, 2016

With the growing grocerant trend, grocery stores are competing with restaurants by offering more ready-to-heat and ready-to-eat options.  For all meal occasions of the day, shoppers are coming to your stores looking for a grab-and-go breakfast, lunch, dinner or snack.  While food may be the primary motivation of these shoppers, promoting healthier beverage options is a way to increase sales, promote RD services, and meet a need these shoppers may not even have consciously identified.

Promoting beverages is especially important for individuals working or exercising outdoors or exerting significant physical effort in their roles. Consider construction and road workers, high school and college athletic teams, and others in similar roles.   

The dog days of summer may be behind us, but that doesn’t mean it’s ok to stop hydrating.  The adult human body is made up of ~60% water, so water is one of the key nutrients for health.  It is essential for all individuals and especially for these shoppers with high fluid needs to stay hydrated and replenish fluids to keep the body functioning properly.   

There are a variety of ways retail dietitians can create solution selling opportunities for shoppers with high fluid needs, including:  

  • Educate consumers on the importance of proper hydration during summer, fall, and winter months.  Provide in-store classes or handouts that highlight fluid needs for individuals of all ages and how environmental factors and physical activity impact fluid needs.  Share hydration/rehydration strategies and tips, as well as information to identify signs and symptoms of dehydration.
  • Partner with merchants to ensure a variety of healthy beverages are available near grab-and-go sections of deli and checkout lanes. 
  • Provide sampling opportunities featuring 100% fruit juice, low and no-calorie beverage options that include sports drinks.  Offer literature to educate shoppers on the various sweetener options.
  • Highlight water content in seasonal produce. Help consumers understand how foods can contribute to fluid requirements.  
  • Offer recipe ideas that feature fresh fruits and veggies, such as smoothies.  Have consumers share their favorite creations.  Run an in-store recipe contest.  Highlight the winning recipe(s) in the store smoothie bar.
  • Feature low- and no-calorie beverage options in back-to-school and fall sport promotions. Prominently place reusable water bottles near school supplies and athletic equipment and products to remind parents to stock-up.
  • Check out local papers or social media sites to see what races may be in your area.  Promote sports drinks as a beverage solution to help rehydrate during athletic events lasting an hour or longer.

For more information on fluid needs and talking points to use in these various promotional opportunities, click here.