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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Mar. 18, 2014

Registered Dietitians to Lead Free Grocery Store Tours

COLUMBIA, S.C. --In celebration of National Nutrition Month, registered dietitians affiliated with the South Carolina Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (SCAND) have volunteered to lead free grocery store tours at select BI-LO locations to help families learn how to shop and eat healthier on a budget, the S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control announced today.

"As nutrition professionals, we realize that the grocery store can be a confusing place for consumers and we want to show them that eating healthy doesn't have to be expensive," said Dr. Kathleen Mercer, RD, LD, and President of the S.C. Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.

The free tours will be held at select BI-LO locations across the state at 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. Thursday, March 20, 2014, and at 9 a.m. Saturday, March, 22, 2014. A full list of the participating BI-LO stores, as well as their tour dates and times, can be found here.

The volunteer registered dietitians leading the tours will utilize Cooking Matters, an educational resource that helps participants learn how to use nutrition information to make healthier, affordable choices. Tour participants will learn how to feed their family healthy foods on a budget, select whole grains, and find the best price per unit.

Free tours will be held at 27 BI-LO stores across South Carolina. No registration is required to participate.

"At BI-LO, we love to offer our customers access to programs like Cooking Matters, which connects our local community with local nutrition experts," said BI-LO regional vice president Allen Reavis. "As a South Carolina grocer it is important to us that we provide not only fresh fruit and vegetables for our community, but offerings our customers feel are budget friendly and nutritionally healthy for their families."

Several registered dietitians from DHEC have volunteered to lead grocery store tours in their communities.

"DHEC's registered dietitians play an integral role in our efforts to reduce obesity in South Carolina," said DHEC Director Catherine Templeton. "Our dietitians provide nutritional education to help our clients understand what they are eating and the impacts these food decisions have on their health. We are pleased to partner with SCAND and BI-LO so our clients can learn from an expert how to shop for healthy foods on a budget."

For more information, visit:http://www.scdhec.gov/library/CR-010946.pdf.

Additional Contacts:

Kathleen C. Mercer, Rd, LD, Ed.D
President, SCAND
803-255-7223
kmercer@sc.rr.com

Miranda Major, BI-LO
904-596-2152
MirandaMajor@sjp.com

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For media inquiries:
Mark Plowden – (803) 898-9518
Email – Mark.Plowden@dhec.sc.gov

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