People with allergies can now get moving even faster with the SmartWithFood app

The SmartWithFood app, which was launched approximately two years ago by Colruyt Group to help its customers obtain information about foods in a transparent manner, now also contains information about the 14 legally defined allergens. The addition of information about the presence or absence of gluten, shellfish, eggs, fish, peanuts, soya, milk, nuts, celery, mustard, sesame seeds, sulphites, lupine and molluscs renders the app even more comprehensive for people who wish to make specific nutritional choices. This is a first in our country, as there is currently no clear tool available that would allow people with allergies to see the forest for the trees. In today's world, in which people are becoming steadily more aware of (healthy) nutrition for themselves and their families, and in which intolerances and allergies are increasingly common, such an app is a very handy assistant. This way, Colruyt Group wants to continue along the route to more personalised nutritional advice.

SmartWithWhat?

The SmartWithFood app was launched SmartWithFood, a subsidiary of Colruyt Group, for those who want or need to be aware of their eating habits. Ignace De Nollin, Business Unit Manager at SmartWithFood: "Today one Belgian in five is lactose-intolerant. Our country has had a significant increase in the number of diabetics: 1 in 20 Belgians suffer from diabetes and these figures are rising. People are in search of tools to help them choose nutritional products that suit them. SmartWithFood thus wants to be a digital bridge between a personal nutritional profile on the one hand and the product or recipe on the other."

Users of the app can scan in the bar code of a product and will then be able to see at a glance whether the product meets the requirements and preferences of the specific person. As a user you complete your nutritional profile only once, as well as the profiles of your family members or friends eating with you. Users can then indicate in the app whether any intolerances need to be taken into account, as well as a vegetarian, vegan or alcohol-free lifestyle.

Over 200 additional ingredient preferences or requirements can be entered and the range is wide: from no preservatives to caffeine, or even just more pulses, etc. From today onwards, the 14 allergens will also be added.

Moreover, alternatives are being proposed and users will easily and quickly be able to get to know other products. "We see that today 1 in 5 families effectively need to read and interpret the product label in order to match it with the various individual needs of the family – ranging from allergens to intolerances, lifestyle or dietary choices and personal preferences. This is not always an easy job. We want to be able to offer quick and handy assistance with the app. The fact that allergens will be added today is certainly added value," De Nollin stated.

Transparency and convenience

The SmartWithFood app wants to bring more convenience, simplicity and transparency to the daily lives of the consumer by providing him/her with even quicker access to transparent and reliable product information. It only takes one click on the smartphone for users to obtain information about:

  • The product ingredients
  • Information about whether the product is vegetarian, vegan or alcohol-free
  • The nutritional value of the product
  • The content of sugar, saturated fats and kcal in comparison with other products in the same category
  • The equivalent in physical exercise (cycling, stepping, zumba, etc.) represented by the portion
  • NEW: the 14 legally defined allergens (gluten, shellfish, eggs, fish, peanuts, soya, milk, nuts, celery, mustard, sesame seeds, sulphites, lupine, molluscs) and lactose

De Nollin explained: "The reasons why we have only just been able to add this allergen information is that not all digital data have already been fully available. Together with our suppliers we have worked really hard to ensure the accuracy and completeness of the data. We also continue our efforts to play our pioneering role, helping to inform consumers in a simple way about what they need and do not need."

The app recognises almost all products stocked by the shops of Colruyt Laagste Prijzen, Bio-Planet, OKay and the linked Spar shops of Colruyt Group. The SmartWithFood app can be downloaded free of charge via Google Play or the App Store.

De Nollin adds: "SmartWithFood also has a business-to-business focus, as business partner for other companies. In that way producers, retailers and food health professionals can offer personalised product and recipe information to their customers, online as well as offline. We also analyse food assortments based on our data."

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