PLEASANTON, CALIF. — Retailer Safeway Inc. is introducing a new nutrition information program in its stores called SimpleNutrition. The program will consist of shelf tags that will alert shoppers to 22 different nutrition and ingredient benefits such as “low in fat,” “good source of fiber,” “gluten free,” “organic,” “sodium smart” and “made with whole grains.”

To be included in the program, products must meet specific criteria.

“Consumers are inundated with conflicting nutrition information and are often skeptical of the nutrition claims on packaging,” said Barbara Walker, group vice-president of consumer communications and brand marketing. “SimpleNutrition is an ‘at the shelf’ program that simplifies and personalizes the grocery shopping experience so that shoppers can feel confident about making more informed food choices. While SimpleNutrition is not a replacement for the nutrition panel found on food and beverage packages, it provides shoppers with a quick snapshot of the nutrition and ingredient benefits that best match their nutritional needs.”

Safeway said it will continue to update the qualifying items in the program based on changes in product nutrition and ingredient information, and new products in the store. The company also plans to expand the SimpleNutrition program throughout 2011 by introducing a personalized on-line nutrition tool to help shoppers find healthier alternatives to the foods they currently purchase.