A trip to the grocery store with kids can be hard. Younger children in the grocery cart seat grab things placed at eye level, and older children will often beg for junk food. By the time a family gets to the checkout, the last thing any parent needs is tempting rows of candy and other unhealthy snacks. Many parents (including myself) have been worn down and bought a sugary treat just to keep the peace.
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The concept of a checkout aisle without candy and chips is so novel, that a photo of one on Imjur recently received more than 1.8 million views.
There's nothing for a kid to beg for in this checkout aisle. (Photo: Imjur)
Starting in October, 30 of Target's locations in Minneapolis, Dallas and Denver will make healthy foods the default by the cash registers. The majority of the candy bars, chips and sodas will be replaced by snacks like nuts, Kind bars, and healthier choices from Target's Simply Balanced line.
The store isn't making a big deal about it, though. Christina Hennington, Target's senior vice president of merchandising, told the press that Target doesn't want to be "preachy" about it.
"We're testing the envelope to see how far we can push it without annoying our guests," she said. "They don't want us to tell them how to live their lives."
The store is making other strides to help its employees stay healthy. It's giving them all Fitbits, extra discounts on C9 active wear, and offering healthier choices in the employee cafeteria.
In the U.K., the largest grocery chain Tesco started to ditch sweets in the checkout aisle 20 years ago. It's been decades since the chain's large stores have stocked candy by the cash registers, and last year, it removed it from its smaller stores, too. The move was in response to customers requests to make the options healthier and to keep the begging at bay.
Changing out candy for Kind bars in the checkout aisle might not completely stop the begging from kids, but it may help parents feel a little better about giving children a healthier option. If it works at Target, I wonder if other stores will follow suit. My kids are older, but they still ask me for sugary stuff in the checkout aisle if they're with me at the store. I'd appreciate a candy-free aisle.