Health Department and Grocery Stores Partner to make Nutritious Meals Easier


The Four Corners Health Department based in York is using a program aimed at getting kids to make better eating decisions, and they’re partnering with area grocery stores to make it easier for parents to get involved too.

With an abundance of choices, health experts say it’s not always easy to put together the most nutritious meal.

“Many families are challenged with low time, low finances, high stress, so it gets challenging when they come home to think what are we going to have for dinner?” says Four Corners Public Health Nurse and Community Education Coordinator Chris Blanke.

But Blanke says they’re helping families with that through “Choosy Kids.” She says they’re using the program in local child care centers, and at the same time getting the mascot into stores like Grand Central Foods in York.

“We are working with local grocery stores as part of the larger project of bringing easy to make, healthy, affordable meals to families,” she says.

Four Corners mails out a recipe of the month, then Choosy signs at the store help parents pick up the ingredients with ease.

Blanke says it’s tying the message to the means, and Grand Central owner Warren Thomas says they’re happy to help.

“We’ve donated a certain area of the store so that they could put up a display to promote that concept,” he says.

Blanke says twelve families are participating in evaluations so Four Corners can see if the in-store publicity works, and if messages about getting active, being good role models, and eating as a family are getting across too.

“We have that message on [the display at the store], and we also have that message on the back of the recipes too just to help promote that good healthy message for families,” says Blanke.

Choosy isn’t just limited to the grocery store - Blanke says they’re using their recipes and the little green Choosy mascot to include area farmers market products over the summer.