Can I just say I have a new found respect for Hy-Vee? I had the opportunity to tour the store with a group of moms and it was a great experience. Most of the things were pretty basic, but it is a grocery store.

However, did you know that:

  1. They have a registered Dietitian, Stefanie who is phenomenal. She is wonderful and sweet and honest and informative and SO excited about making healthy choices. Oh, and she’s a straight shooter. If you mention something that she doesn’t feel like she has the best, most accurate information she will tell you, and then research and follow up with you.  Stefanie helped us realize that just because something has a lot of carbs doesn’t mean it’s unhealthy.  Fiber is packed with carbs but is very healthy for us.  High fiber, low sugar and low sodium, that’s the key.
  2. Hy-Vee has parking stations for electric cars? These stations are powered by both solar and wind energy. Right in the middle of town. How neat is that!
  3. They have a garden that they grow on the south side of the building that they use in their restaurant.
  4. They source local foods. Many of the farmers you know and love may be represented in Hy-Vee’s fruit, vegetable or flower selections!! For example, Prairie Earth Farms provides fresh organic produce options! They even have special labels for the produce that is local (within 200 miles of the store) and the label tells you how many miles the produce travels to get to us.
  5. Many of their labels (nearly all in the coming months) have a big number on the left side called the NuVal number that represents the healthfulness on a level of 1-100. That makes picking out healthier options much easier when you are bombarded with fantastic marketing.

    NuVal Label

    These numbers illustrate the healthfulness on a scale of 1 (don’t touch it-unhealthy) to 100 (take as much as you can – healthy).

  6. If they don’t have something you are looking for there is typically someone WITH A SMILE nearby that would be happy to help you (honestly, I’m not just saying this, everyone was so so so nice and personable; very refreshing).
  7. They have mini carts for kiddos!! Enough said 🙂
  8. Starbucks…. Inside! Sometimes all it takes is a bit of coffee to make it through the store with your kiddos.
  9. Free ice cream samples. Sometimes bribery works better than Starbucks 🙂
  10. They have one of the largest health food options around, at more than competitive prices. They also have the options that are naturally gluten free and MADE gluten free in the same area (I thought this was a very thoughtful idea so you don’t have to wander all over the store).
  11. Sit down and more cafeteria style eating options on site.
  12. I believe last week they had over 170 fresh ORGANIC produce options.  Just organic.  In addition to those they have an unbelievable selection of traditionally grown produce including some crazy ones like Jackfruit!
  13. It is BRIGHT inside, lots of skylights!
  14. It has an excellent fresh meat and seafood selection!
  15. They have an ongoing class in the summer with kiddos where they teach them about making health choices and working with a garden?

I know this sounds like a plug and it wasn’t meant to be but I was very impressed with the added value that Hy-vee offers its customers. It’s not just a grocery store, they strive to help make every town they are in a better place.