Goodbye chocolate bars, Martin’s announces healthier items near checkout lanes

Have a hard time saying no to those sweet treats while you wait in the checkout lane of grocery stores? Martin’s will now make it easier to avoid them (and have a healthier diet too).

You know the typical grocery store checkout lane, walled with sugary, chocolatey impulse purchases? It’s something we’ve grown accustomed to, but that may soon change.

Martin’s has announced that eight of its local stores will offer Healthy Ideas checkout lanes to customers to encourage healthier impulse eating. These lanes will have items such as fruit, nuts, and 100% fruit juice.

“MARTIN’S is excited to be the pioneer grocery store in the Richmond area to offer healthy food and beverage items in select check-out lanes,” said Valerie Waters, in-store nutritionist, MARTIN’S Food Markets. “We think our moms and dads, in particular, will appreciate a checkout lane with items that are not full of added sugar and unhealthy fats, which tempt all of us on our way out of the store.”

The new lanes came from a partnership the grocery store has with Richmond City Health District and Greater Richmond Fit4Kids.

“We’re excited to work with members of the community such as MARTIN’S Food Markets and Fit4Kids to bring about dramatic change to the norm by making it easier for our residents to make healthier choices,” said Dr. Danny Avula, Richmond City Health District Deputy Director. “Everything we can do to influence behaviors leading to a healthier lifestyle is a step toward healthier families and a healthier community.”

The following Martin’s stores have the new checkout lanes:

  • Brook Run, 5700 Brook Road
  • Carytown, 3522 W. Cary Street
  • Chesterfield Towne Center, 11361 Midlothian Turnpike
  • Chippenham, 5201 Chippenham Crossing
  • Cross Ridge, 10250 Staples Mill Road, Glen Allen
  • John Rolfe, 2250 John Rolfe Parkway
  • Stratford Hills, 7045 Forest Hill Avenue
  • White Oak, 4591 S. Laburnum Avenue

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  1. Karen on said:

    What a great idea! I am sometimes tempted to pick up a candy bar while waiting in line but now may be more tempted to pick up a banana or two.

  2. Michelle on said:

    This article conveniently leaves out the $15,000 grant they received from the CDC to do this.

  3. @Michelle – Interesting. I didn’t hear about the CDC grant. How do you know this?

  4. Michelle on said:

    I read that in the article at, but interestingly, the RTD article says it was the Virginia Dept of Health grant to the Richmond City Health District. What makes it even more interesting is that only 2 of the stores mentioned are actually in the City of Richmond.

  5. And what’s really hilarious is that this is what I saw recently at the Martin’s on Laburnum:

  6. Four of the stores are located within city limits in Richmond. The VDH received the money from the CDC, which VDH then distributed to different health departments throughout the state of Virginia.

    As for the cotton candy…unfortunately, the signage was put up in many stores before the items were replaced. Because of the timing, many customers were confused or amused at the “healthy signage” and “unhealthy” aisles.

  7. @Lee I figured as much. I really like Martin’s overall (as well as cotton candy) so it’s by no means a dealbreaker to me!

  8. Nothing wrong with a chocolate bar as long as it’s good dark chocolate, which is healthy if consumed in small amounts.

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