1. Waste from plastic bags is a global environmental problem that particularly affects island nations such as Indonesia. Used plastic bags often end up polluting the ocean, endangering sea life and washing up as garbage on the coast line.

    Reducing the use of these bags aligns with Delhaize Group’s-wide goal of becoming a Zero Waste organization by 2020. So in 2013, Super Indo, our banner in Indonesia, launched an ambitious, year-long campaign to encourage our customers to shop with reusable bags.


    A big kick-off

    Our program, “Gunakan Reusable Bag, Dapatkan Cashback” or “Use a Reusable Bag, Get Cash Back,” offered shoppers cash back on their purchases when they used a reusable bag or cardboard box. Customers received 100, 200 or 300 Indonesian rupiahs (IDR) for purchases of IDR 50 000 to IDR 100 000, IDR 200 000 and IDR 300 000, respectively.

    Customers who did not want to apply their cash-back award to their bills could instead choose to donate the amount to the Indonesian Solid Waste Association (InSWA). InSWA supports the Wise Waste Management Campaign, which educates the public about the importance of reducing waste. To create excitement for the program, we organized “I Choose to Reuse,” an event on Jakarta’s weekly Car-Free Day. On a Car-Free Day in February, we invited the public to exchange used plastic bags and other containers for a free, reusable bag. We also asked participants to sign a pledge promising to use fewer plastic bags.

    An equally big response

    More than 2 000 people signed the pledge that day – a world record for the largest number of people ever to take such a pledge, according to the Museum of Indonesian Records. As part of the festivities, we created a 4-meter tall “waste monster” from the plastic bags and polystyrene we collected, to remind the public that trash is an environmental menace. InSWA gave us an award recognizing Super Indo as the most active supermarket for customer education in terms of reducing plastic bag use.

    The cash-back campaign continued throughout the year in all 117 Super Indo stores.

    Thanks to the program, thousands of customers have begun using reusable shopping bags. Their cash-back donations to InSWA totaled more than 37 million IDR.

    We plan to extend the cash-back program to continue inspiring customers to change their habits and adopt reusable bags.


    This article was published as a case study in Delhaize Group’s 2013 Sustainability Progress Report. Click here to access the full report.

  2. Jul 16 2014


    Poptails – cocktails to savor like sorbets – are THE summer trend. The ice cream is made with custard and a fruit flavor or purée. Choose fruits with many different colors and serve a good dose of vitamins to your guests.

    Is it a drink? A sorbet? One thing is certain: gourmets from all over the world are fond of them. In any case, poptails are fun and good for the figure. They are really easy to make. All you need is a blender, sticks, lemons, peaches, melons and… a beautiful sunny day. Poptails can be made of a mix of fresh and simple tastes, or an overlapping of flavors like in a traditional cocktail. In this case, put the poptail in the freezer for one hour after each new layer so that the different flavors do not mix together. You can add a few drops of alcohol, but don’t worry: the poptail will also be delicious without.

    Creativity matters!

    This picture was taken with minced fruit.
    Mix them before making your poptails.


    This article was initially published in Belgium’s Delhaize Magazine of June-July 2014.

    Extracts of the article were used for this posting.

  3. Rhubarb is one of the first plants to pop up when the weather warms. Its presence on spring and summer menus provides a much-needed injection of tartness, an acidic tang welcomed by palates grown weary of winter’s rich, more substantial foods. Ruby-hued rhubarb may be the most familiar, but some varieties remain quite green and others are primarily pink. Whether that color corresponds to the stalk’s sweetness level (or lack of thereof) is debatable, but regardless, this bracingly sour vegetable (no it’s not a fruit) will enhance your meals.


    Rhubab and your health
    People have been growing rhubarb for a long time. Recorded cultivation dates back to ancient China, where rhubarb’s roots were dried and used medicinally to treat myriad conditions (herbalists still use rhubarb as a treatment, moistly for digestive disorders). Rhubarb boasts a bevy of beneficial phytochemicals, as well as sprinkling of nutrients, including vitamin C and potassium. Rhubarb is also excellent source of vitamin K, with a cup of cooked rhubarb providing over half the day’s requirement for this nutrient.

    Tips for buying, storing and cooking rhubarb
    Rhubarb is typically sold loosely or in bunches with the inedible leaves (they’re poisonous) already removed. If you’re harvesting your own, be sure to cut off and discard the leaves. Rhubarb will keep well in a plastic bag in the refrigerator for several days. Rhubarb also freezes nicely. Cut the stalks into ½ to 1 inch (1 to 2,5 cm) pieces and pack them into resealable plastic freezer bags (you do not have to blanch them first unless you want to). Rhubarb is also delicious canned in a sugar syrup or as a jam. Note that rhubarb is quite acidic and will react with some metals like aluminum, so cook it only in a stainless steel or enamel pot.

    Cooking with rhubarb
    Because rhubarb is tart, it’s something few people eat raw. Cooked, sweetened rhubarb is quite versatile, though it’s most often served as a dessert – think strawberry –rhubarb pie. That popular combination is a natural, but there are other fruits that play nice with rhubarb – such as raspberries. Looking for the unusual ways to ring in the rhubarb season? Consider these:
    • Make a simple syrup with equal parts sugar and water and infuse it with sliced rhubarb; add it to lemonade for a pretty pink version
    • Use chopped rhubarb instead of cranberries in muffins
    • Use some of your froze rhubarb as an ingredient in homemade cranberry sauce or a fruit compote
    • Roast some rhubarb (cut it into 1 or 2 inch – 2,5 to 5 cm – chunks) with a sprinkling of sugar and some fruit juice (cranberry or orange might be nice) for a delightful oatmeal mix-in or yogurt topper
    • Make a chutney with rhubarb, oranges, and raisins to perk up pork, duck, or lamb



    This article was initially published in Hannaford’s Fresh Magazine of May-June 2014. Extracts of the article were used for this posting.

  4. Read more about how we are doing this in our 2013 Sustainability Progress Report, available online today.

    At Delhaize Group, we put the customer at the center of everything we do and keep a close eye on industry dynamics that matter to our communities and local markets.

    Today, we are proud to present to you our 2013 Sustainability Progress Report. In it, you will find a summary of achievements Delhaize Group and its Operating Companies have made in light of our “Supergood” Sustainability Strategy launched in 2012.

    Our 7th annual sustainability report details Delhaize Group’s progress in addressing important dynamics of climate change, resource scarcity and consumer health needs within our industry for our local communities.

    This year, our progress report delivers a short summary of overall Group results as well as distinct “bite-sized” chapters for each Operating Company. Read the full report online here: http://sustainabilityreport.delhaizegroup.com. Our press release is available in English, French and Dutch online at our web site : http://www.delhaizegroup.com.

    We’d like to take the opportunity here in our blog to bring a little more context to the industry dynamics and challenges we faced in 2013 while achieving progress toward our 2020 ambitions. 

    Let’s start with what is on the minds of our key stakeholders (customers, associates and communities): 

    • Health of our communities and associates
    • Food Safety throughout the supply chain
    • Sustainable Agriculture practices within our selection and sale of products
    • Climate Change impacts from our operations and our products
    • Local Communities supported economically
    • Food Security with changing global supply and demand of food products  
    • Waste minimization through our selection and sale of products
    • Human Rights & Labor Rights protected across our supply chains and operations

    Biggest challenge in 2013: supply chain transparency

    High profile cases in 2013, such as the horsemeat scandal that impacted our sector in Europe and concerns about Genetically Modified Organisms in the US, have made supply chain transparency a critical issue for many consumers. These concerns have reinforced our commitment in 2014 and beyond to redesigning how we source products and track data to meet demands for increased transparency.

    Our 2020 Strategy continues to propel our journey to “Supergood”

    Our vision at Delhaize Group is to be the sustainability leaders – to be “Supergood” – in all our markets by 2020, through full commitment to sustainable private brand products, waste reduction, healthier lifestyles, and employment of a diverse associate base that reflects our values and communities.

    To achieve our ambition, we establish specific targets for the whole Group supported by locally-led goals embedded in our operations. We recognize that this kind of operational commitment must start at the top and we are proud to say that these areas of commitment are fully endorsed by our President and CEO Frans Muller.

    The following 2013 accomplishments are beginning to tackle the industry dynamics:

    • Sustainable private brands: Delhaize Group made important strides in supporting sustainable agriculture and healthier eating. One example is Alfa Beta’s launch of its sustainable seafood initiative, ensuring that its fresh seafood will be 100% sustainably sourced. A second example is the fact that our percentage of Global Food Safety Initiative (GFSI)-certified private brand suppliers rose to 82%.


    • Zero waste: Delhaize Group succeeded in reducing waste through innovations in its operations world-wide. For example, its Delhaize America banners reduced their waste sent to landfill by 19% and the average Group-wide recycling rate increased to 56%.


    • Everyday practices: Delhaize Group took responsibility for minimizing one of the industry’s largest contributors to climate change – refrigeration emissions. It installed state-of-the-art transcritical CO2 refrigeration systems in two stores (one in Belgium and one in the U.S.) to test how the Group can dramatically reduce its climate change impact from refrigeration. The company reduced emissions from refrigerants by 8% per square meter in 2013 alone.


    • Employment of a diverse associate base: Delhaize Group is being recognized for employing a diverse associate population that represents its surrounding communities. For example, the Human Rights Campaign recognized Delhaize America as one of the best places to work in the U.S.


    “These are the kinds of examples that embody our values of integrity and determination, and our intention to do what is right,” said our President and CEO Frans Muller. “I am encouraged by the progress Delhaize Group made in 2013 in addressing the concerns that matter to local customers and the communities we serve.”

    We like to hear your questions and comments! Please post them below or send them to use directly at sustainability@delhaizegroup.com.






  5. Spring is the ideal time to eat the best asparagus. Light, healthy and refined, they are suited for simple, fresh and greedy pleasure. Here is some information on how to select, store and cook them. 



    A bit of a history
    In the Mediterranean region where asparagus come from, the Egyptians and the Greeks already used them for their contraceptive and aphrodisiacs virtues. The Greeks dedicated this plant to Aphrodite, the goddess of love. The Romans initiated its cultivation and as from the Renaissance, asparagus found a treasured place in the vegetable gardens. Some varieties contributed to build the reputation of soils as Mechelen or Leuven.

    The varieties
    White asparagus are grown covered in sand mounds. They are harvested just before the buds come out of the ground. Protected against light, they are nice pearly white and particularly mild. Green asparagus are white asparagus that have been exposed to light. Their taste is stronger and more bitter. There are many varieties of asparagus. If most of the varieties produce indifferently white and green asparagus, they have different sizes. Tasty and thick, the white asparagus Delhaize Taste of Inspirations are specifically grown for Delhaize. The early white asparagus in bunch and the Belgian extra white asparagus are selected for their taste and freshness. The fine white asparagus 365 are more affordable and the baby white asparagus have a light taste. Discover the baby green asparagus and the green asparagus in bunch. Low-calorie, rich in fibers and thus improving transit time, the asparagus is also diuretic and rich in vitamin C. It also contains phosphorus and vitamins of B group.

    Selection and storage
    The asparagus in your store have already been carefully selected. They are straight and smooth, with firm and tight tips. The ends are not too dried nor too dark, proof of the best quality. Ideally, they should be consumed soon after purchase. But you may store them for 2 days in the refrigerator crisper, wrapped, tips up in a damp cloth.

    In the kitchen
    Remove the end of the asparagus spears by holding the asparagus with both hands and bending gently. The end will snap off at its natural breaking point. Peel the white asparagus on a table from tip to end with a vegetable peeler. There is no need to peel green asparagus. Cook them rapidly. Steaming is preferable. If you choose boiling, put them, tied in a bunch, in salted boiling water so that the tips are not immersed in water. Then, plunge them into a bowl of cold water and ice cubes to stop the cooking and drain. The asparagus is delicious when fried, grilled over low heat or raw. Its bitterness goes well with the fat of the egg, butter, cured meats, smoked fish or parmesan but also with the acidity of lemon or fine vinegar. The green asparagus is fond of hazelnuts and grilled peanuts.


    White asparagus on the Flemish way
    Time: 25 min. For 6 people


    1,5 kg (3 lb 5 oz) of white asparagus – 3 eggs – 150 g (5.30 oz) of butter – ½ bunch of flat-leaf parsley – the juice of 1 lemon – salt – ground black pepper

    1. Break the end of the asparagus and peel them with a vegetable peeler. Tie them with a kitchen twine in order to make a bundle. Plunge the asparagus into a deep pan filled with cold water. Add some salt. Bring to a boil and leave to simmer for about 10 to 15 minutes depending on the size of the asparagus. Take the bundles out of the water and leave to drain.


    2. Cook the hard-boiled eggs. Shell them and mash them with a fork. Chop the parsley. Melt the butter in a saucepan and add the lemon juice. Whisk the preparation. Remove from heat and add some salt and pepper. Add the hard-boiled eggs and the chopped parsley. Mix.

    3. Spread the asparagus on the plates and coat them with sauce.


    4. Enjoy!

    Nutritional value per serving
    261 kcal – 7.6 g (0.27 oz) of protein – 23.4 g (0.82 oz) of fat – 6.1 g (0.21 oz) of carbohydrates

    Which wine to choose?
    Douro Altano 2012 White
    The Symington family, best known for her port wines, also produces wines such as those from Altano, in the Douro valley. This white wine is perfect to accompany asparagus


     This article was initially published in Belgium’s Delhaize Magazine of April-May 2014.
    Extracts of the article were used for this posting.

  6. Spring’s here, the sun is shining again and the world is full of shiny happy people! But wait, if nature is booming around you, why is it that you are feeling irritable, listless and unable to concentrate? Well, you might have spring fatigue. And you’re certainly not the only one. Many people feel it, but don’t worry: spring fatigue is not a disease. It’s just your body having difficulties adapting to the seasonal changes. 



    This mood usually sets in sometime between the end of February and mid-April and is caused by longer daylight hours and higher temperatures. When the temperature rises, our bodies consume more energy, leaving us feeling sluggish. A lack of sleep can also contribute to spring fatigue, as people tend to wake up earlier as nights grow shorter.

    Since spring fatigue is not an illness, there is no treatment. By introducing small changes into your daily routine, the period of exhaustion can be greatly reduced:

    -Sleep: Try waking up at the same time each morning to combat the fatigue. A 20-minute nap after lunch can also help generating energy.

    -Sports: Do more sports! Any form of activity will do, it’s especially good to exercise outdoors. This will help you fill up your vitamin D reserves.

    -Food: Try to achieve a diet where one third of your food consumption comes from fresh vegetables or fruits. Eating plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables supplies the body with an extra portion of vitamins and minerals.

    -Drink: Drinking a sufficient amount of fluids is also part of the prevention program. Try to consume 1,5 to 2 liters per day.

    Other effective solutions against fatigue include sauna, massage and spending more time outdoors. Most important of all is to take it easy. Don’t worry too much about the symptoms too seriously. Your body has been brought out of its accustomed rhythm. So give it some time to adjust and go with the spring flow!

  7. Those who love cooking and enjoy discovering “new” flavors have probably already noticed the trend: forgotten vegetables are back in our pans! Some of them have been well and truly emerged from oblivion; others have more trouble making their comeback.

    Veggies that have managed their return

    Mainly winter vegetables are making their comeback. Most of them are delicious when prepared mashed. You can also grill or cook them on the stove to keep them al dente. Or why not make fries? Here are some tasty examples.

    Parsnip: It has a sweet flavor and its whiteness reminds us of potato flesh. Parsnip is tender like turnips but doesn’t have its bitterness. It is delicious when prepared mashed with potatoes. You can grate it in a salad, or prepare soup with it. Looking for something more original? Bake them as french fries!

    Rutabaga: A vegetable that will please vegetarians! You can easily add it to any recipe without meat, like in a bulgur of vegetables. You want to convince your children too? Cut the rutabaga into thin slices and cook it in a pan. Your kitchen will quickly smell like pancakes and they will want to taste this mysterious vegetable!

    Horseradish: It’s like a huge radish! To prepare: peel it and remove the green parts and the center. It can be enjoyed grated with a bit of lemon juice or vinegar. Horseradish is mainly used to spice things up a little. You can put it in your sauces, dressings or butter. It’s a good alternative for mustard.





    Veggies that we still forget about

    Parsnip, rutabaga and horseradish… You can hardly call them “forgotten vegetables” anymore. They can be found quite easily on a restaurant menu or in supermarkets.  But there still are other veggies whose names don’t sound very familiar…

    Tuberous Parsley: This is a root… with a parsley taste! It is delicious in soups; accompanied by chopped chicken dumplings (this is the perfect recipe to discover the flavor of this root). Tuberous parsley is also very tasty in a fresh salad with a sweet dressing and some nuts.

    Jerusalem artichoke: It tastes a bit like pear, and the texture is similar too. You can cook it as potatoes and serve it mashed.

    Evening Primrose: The roots of this flower are edible and taste a little like meat. The interior is even slightly pink. Treat the veggie like meat: slice and grill in to add to your winter soup as if it was bacon. Or add some slices to your salad, as if it was Parma ham.






    Good luck with your culinary discovery!

  8. Salt tastes good, but is bad for your health if you eat too much of it. Use it moderately and be creative when looking for alternatives.

    You probably think that dishes without salt do not have a lot of taste. Guess again. When you’re cooking or ready to start eating, first taste before you add some (more) salt. And if you still want to add some flavour, there are various alternatives.

    Choose the right food
    Nature offers us a lot of food that doesn’t need any salt to taste good. Whole grains (rice, pasta, bulgur, quinoa, corn) have a lot more taste than their refined versions. Legumes (chickpeas, lentils, white beans) flavoured with shallots or garlic are also delicious, even without salt.


    source: http://healthycheapandsimple.weebly.com/breads-rice-pasta–casseroles–other-grains.html


    Spices such as coriander, parsley or chervil add flavour to warm and cold dishes. If you add them at the end of the preparation, they come out even better.


    Seasonal vegetables and fruits
    In general, seasonal vegetables and fruits have more flavour. Chicory, celery, leek, cabbage, fennel, pepper are all tasty vegetables that can go without salt. Moreover, Delhaize offers a wide range of low-salt products: canned vegetables and fish, rice waffles, meat, sodium-low salt…

    Source: http://olharfeliz.typepad.com/cuisine/2008/02/bruschetta-de-p.html


    Good to know
    To know how much salt a product contains, check the label and multiply the amount of sodium by 2.5.


    Bon appétit!


    This article was initially published in Belgium’s Delhaize Magazine of February-March 2014.
    Extracts of the article were used for this posting.

  9. Vividly coloured and tasty, citrus fruits put a little sunshine on the table, even in the middle of the winter. In juices or as scraps, slices or a carpaccio, they add zest to various dishes and offer you the necessary vitamin C! A magic recipe that protects you against colds. Here is our seasonal range.



    The orange is a delicious and juicy fruit. As soon as you have tasted it, your energy level is boosted! You can obtain your daily dose of vitamin C from a medium orange!

    The smallest citrus fruit can be eaten entirely, as the skin is full of antioxidants. Recipe idea: cook some pasta al dente and add some truffle scraps and thin slices of cumquat to serve a quick and delicious meal.

    The clementine is a cross between an orange and a mandarin that can be peeled easily and contains few pips.  Children just love it!

    Blood orange
    A blood orange is a real treat. Its deep red flesh and sweet taste sometimes remind of raspberries.  You can use it to flavour juices and desserts.

    Lemons can be used in both sweet and salty dishes. Lemon juice adds zest to carpaccios, a cup of tea or red beet soup. Miracle recipe when you’re having a cold: draw clove and ginger in a big cup of hot water. Strain the extraction as soon as it has reached room temperature and add some lemon juice and honey.

    Its subtle taste works well in cocktails like mojito or ti’punch with or without alcohol. A lime is less sour than a lemon and gives a little extra to your minced fish.

    White grapefruit
    Starters, main dishes or desserts: white grapefruit is always a success with its marked bitter taste. It is delicious with fish, sea food, pork, chicken or duck.

    Pink grapefruit
    Pink grapefruit has a softer taste than the white variety and is the perfect piece of fruit for breakfast: cut it into two pieces, add some sugar and begin your day with a lot of energy.  If you would like to try something else, add some pink grapefruit juice to your creamy carrot soup. Yummie!


    A few tips

    • Roll the citrus fruits over the worktable with your hands to obtain even more juice.
    • Put a peeled piece of fruit in the freezer for about ten minutes before making a carpaccio of it.
    • How do you store citrus fruits? In the refrigerator! Don’t keep them for too long and preferably eat them raw. Rinse off the citrus fruits, as vitamin C is soluble.


    What is vitamin C?
    Vitamin C works as an antioxidant in the body and is necessary to form connective tissue, to absorb iron and to build up resistance. It is also beneficial for healthy bones, teeth, skin and blood vessels.

    How can you take up enough vitamin C?
    The body itself produces a number of vitamins, but no vitamin C.  This means we have to eat enough fruits and vegetables that contain vitamin C, such as citrus fruits, kiwis, forest fruits (blackcurrants, raspberries, gooseberries, strawberries, red berries), passion fruits, mangos, red peppers, cabbages, sauerkraut, broccoli, watercress, chervil, etc.




    This article was initially published in Belgium’s Delhaize Magazine of February-March 2014.
    Extracts of the article were used for this posting.

  10. Knitting, crocheting, sewing… These used to be the things you saw your grandmother do during the Sunday afternoon visits. In spite of the fact  that those times are long gone, handicrafts are hip again. Young and old mingle during the numerous knitting classes that are organized in many countries. Youngsters are sharing top addresses to buy some special fabric or wool. Teddy bears for children are no longer bought in toy stores but homemade by handy moms. It’s obvious. Granny is hip again.

    In times of busy agendas and always present social media, it can feel good to go back to basics. It feels wonderful to use your own hands to really create something instead of using them as a typing tool. It’s all about taking the time to make time for you. As the world around us seems to turn faster every day, it’s our guess that more and more people will turn to crafts like knitting and sewing to get some piece of mind.

    From research it appears there is a wide range of ways in which knitting helps humans cope, physically and mentally:

    Knitting is used for therapy as it is a powerful distractant,

    Knitting is supremely relaxing, which is extremely important for reducing stress and anxiety,

    Knitting connects people, knitting groups turn a solitary activity into a social one,

    Knitting improves concentration and can provide an outlet for excessive energy,

    Knitting can reduce the risk of dementia,

    Knitting offers a break from busy schedules and a refreshing detox from a technology-saturated world,

    Knitting makes people happy, those who knit and those who receive knitted items.

    For more details on the above check this article (http://www.treehugger.com/culture/dont-stop-knitting-its-keeping-you-healthy.html)


    Aside from escaping from the daily hassle, knitting and sewing is of course mainly about having fun! And why not share this fun with your children? They might not yet have the skills to use a sewing needle, but they will certainly be able to do some French knitting! How to do it? Just watch this video:

    Another way to keep the kids busy during a rainy afternoon is by creating pompons. They are really easy to make and the results are always fun. Use them to decorate a key hanger or a cupboard or sew them on your warm winter hat. Or why not create some reusable party decorations?
    Source: http://www.momtastic.com/life/163973-diy-pom-pom-garland/


    Conclusion: handicrafts are back and they are bigger and better than ever! Are you inspired by the thousands of people that re-discovered the art of sewing or knitting? Give it a try! If you have to begin from scratch, we advise you to check out some YouTube tutorials. They explain in detail how to start-to-knit. And if you appreciate some company while testing your sewing skills, do a quick Google search about handicrafts activities in your hometown. There must be plenty!