HEALTH

FMI to host first annual Supermarket Health & Wellness Conference

BY Michael Johnsen

ARLINGTON, Va. The Food Marketing Institute on Thursday announced the first Supermarket Health & Wellness Conference will take place May 11 to 13 at the Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas. The conference was developed by the FMI Health and Wellness Advisory Council.

“Supermarkets are unique providers of health and wellness to their customers,” stated Food Marketing Institute president and CEO Leslie Sarasin. “They offer shoppers food, pharmacy and knowledgeable nutrition experts in one location to help their customers better manage diseases, lower stress, improve nutrition and enhance the quality of life through healthy eating.”

The inaugural Supermarket Health & Wellness Conference is designed to assist the industry in developing strategies and tactics to capitalize on emerging health-and-wellness opportunities across the entire store. The conference includes educational sessions to help build collaborative cross-department teams, develop health and wellness programs and market to the evolving shopper.

“Our shoppers are looking for health and wellness benefits in the foods they eat and the medications they take,” stated Helen Eddy, AVP of health and wellness at Hy-Vee and co-chairman of the Health &Wellness Advisory Council. “The Health & Wellness conference is aimed at helping retailers create a shopping experience that meets the needs of today’s customers.”

“Health and wellness is taking center stage at the grocery store,”  noted Thom Blischok, president of global innovation and shopper marketing at Information Resources Inc. and co-chairman of the advisory council. “There is a fundamental shape-shift occurring as shoppers are now making purchasing decisions in the home before they get into the store based on what is best for them and their family. It is an incredibly exciting and opportune time for retailers to show their customers the health and wellness benefits that can be found throughout the supermarket.”

FMI formed the Health and Wellness Advisory Council last year. It is made up of executives from retailer, wholesaler and supplier companies with a wide variety of responsibilities including nutrition, pharmacy, grocery, health and beauty care, consumer affairs and technology innovation. The council’s top priority was to launch a health-and-wellness conference with business opportunities and educational programming for retailers and suppliers.

The conference will be held in conjunction with FMI 2010. Anyone who registers for the Health & Wellness Conference will have full access to FMI 2010.

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Merix unveils new over-the-counter genital herpes treatment

BY Michael Johnsen

BARRINGTON, Ill. Merix Pharmaceutical unveiled its new Fast-Results! genital herpes treatment this month while attending the ECRM Cough, Cold and Allergy conference in Dallas.

The only OTC treatment for genital herpes, Fast-Results! answers an unmet need of people who suffer painful symptoms associated with genital herpes outbreaks. Designed to be used in conjunction with prescription medication, Fast-Results! also brings needed treatment to consumers who cannot afford prescription medication.

Fast-Results! genital herpes treatment is comprised of Merix’ patented technology Viracea, which contains an approved ingredient under the FDA OTC antiseptic/antimicrobial monograph, the company stated. At clinical trial, Viracea was shown to be effective in lesions caused by herpes.

According to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 16% of Americans currently suffer from genital herpes, which equates to approximately 37 million adults.

“We believe there is a very strong market need for this product,” stated Merix CEO Meryl Squires. Several major retailers have already committed to carrying Fast-Results! genital herpes treatment, Squires said. CVS will begin stocking in mid-May, soon thereafter followed by Rite Aid.

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CHPA honors Stan Barshay with outstanding achievement award

BY Michael Johnsen

AVENTURA, Fla. The Consumer Healthcare Products Association on Friday honored recently retired Stan Barshay, former chairman Schering-Plough Consumer Healthcare, with its Ivan D. Combe Distinguished Service Award. The award recognizes outstanding achievements that advance self-care and the public health through business or volunteer efforts.

The award was established in honor of Ivan D. Combe who was extremely active in CHPA activities and served on the Association’s board of directors from 1958 until his death in January 2000.

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