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A HowGood Rating at the Grocery Store Will Make You a More Conscious Consumer

I’d never given much thought to milk. It’s just milk after all. When my daughter turned one last year and started drinking it, suddenly milk wasn’t just milk. In my mind there was milk that I wouldn’t dare let her drink, and there was the best milk I could possibly give to her. I didn’t want her tiny body being exposed to unnecessary hormones, chemicals, or anything else that milk has been getting a bad rap for. I just wanted her to simply have a cup of the protein-rich food that would help her grow to be the big girl that she now thinks she is, on the cusp of a second birthday.

Standing at the grocery cooler inspecting the dozens of options before me, in the end I had a package and price to go off of. I had to weigh the two and make my selection. However, if I were researching my milk purchase today, I might be able to consider the product’s HowGood score. Horizon would have no “globes,” Stonyfield would have a “good” score with one globe, and Organic Valley would have a “very good” score with two globes.

You have no idea what I’m talking about, but Alexander Gillett is working really hard to change that. He and his brother, Arthur, launched HowGood four months ago. They’ve scored more than 100,000 products and awarded each of them zero to three globes. The more globes, the more sustainable the product is.

Alexander explained that with the HowGood sustainability rating displayed right on the price tag at the point of purchase people can expand their decision based on more than price and package claims. He says they’ve found that people are willing to pay a little more for a “greener” product. “The reality is a product that is sustainable costs a little bit more,” he told us.

This is why the “best milk” isn’t always going to be determined by a price or marketing. He explained that the “best milk” may cost even 15 cents more than its seemingly similar competitor, but customers are willing to pay that. “The best-rated milk product saw an increase in sales of 36 percent in one month, and continued over the next four months,” Alexander told us of actual stores sales where the HowGood label was used. (more…)

Review: Skinny Cow Dreamy Clusters Can Fit in Your Diet

There’s a new candy popping up next to grocery check-out stands and it comes from Skinny Cow. Just because a brand markets itself as “healthier” doesn’t always mean that it is. So before you shrug off a Twix fix for a seemingly “better” candy bar, we wanted to look below the wrapper and get the real skinny.

A one-ounce portion of traditional Turtle candies sold at the check-out weighs in with 510 calories! Yikes! That’s more than we’d recommend for an entire meal. The Skinny Cow Dreamy Clusters have far less with 120 calories for that same portion.

Our dietitian, Mary Hartley, RD, took a look at the Skinny Cow Dreamy Clusters and was glad to see a noticeable difference in the two candies. “It’s like the regular version is four or five times worse. But, Skinny Cow managed to keep the fiber. Go figure.” Both candies have three grams of fiber, not something you’d usually find on junk food ingredient labels. (Compare that to a similar candy, Snickers, which has only .5 grams of fiber for a one-ounce serving.) (more…)

Savannah Smiles No Healthier Than Other Girl Scout Cookies

It’s that time of year again! Girl Scout Cookie season is upon us. Among the classic favorites like Thin Mints, Samoas, and Tagalongs, the girls will be offering a brand new cookie this year as part of the organization’s 100th anniversary.

A new lemon cookie called Savannah Smiles will be sold. The name is a nod to the hometown of the Girl Scout’s founder Juliette Gordon Low. The new cookie is designed to look like a smile shape. It is a hard cookie covered in powered sugar with a lemon flavor.

Taste testers haven’t been overly impressed by the Savannah Smiles, mentioning that the flavor lacks the uniqueness that many come to expect from a Girl Scout Cookie. Many Girl Scout flavors are attempted to be replicated and offered on the shelf all year round, but few succeed at really edging out the original. However, the review of the Smiles seem to indicate that many lemon cookie alternatives offer more flavor than the new Girl Scout version. (more…)