Tech-optimized produce Rx: just what the doctor ordered

by Sifter
,
Judy Seybold
,
MS, RDN, LD, CLC
June 18, 2024
June 18, 2024
Healthcare providers are turning to produce prescriptions (PRx) as an effective way to help manage a patient's diabetes, hypertension, or other chronic diet-related condition through increased consumption of healthy fruits and vegetables.

But PRx programs have been hampered by inaccurate and incomplete grocery product identification, frustrating participants with unnecessarily limited produce variety or ineligible preferred items. What’s the solution? Sifter's industry-leading Approved Product Lists (APLs), the curated lists of fruits and vegetables that PRx participants are authorized to buy. We're the technology experts in building custom APLs that are highly accurate and retailer-specific, optimizing the effectiveness and reach of any produce prescription program. Here’s why:

➤ Cost, convenience, waste. Fresh fruits and vegetables can be expensive, time-consuming to prepare, and highly perishable. Sifter's proprietary technology analyzes the nutrition information of grocery foods in all categories — fresh, as well as frozen, canned and dried — allowing us to build APLs that extend into the center of the store.

➤ UPC-level data. When creating a custom APL for a PRx, it is vital to identify fruits and vegetables at the specific UPC level rather than by the general produce category. This helps to accurately identify eligible foods and avoid unintended and unhealthy inclusions, such as candy apples.

➤ Enhanced accessibility, cultural inclusivity. Sifter's retailer network of more than 35,000 national and local food stores makes it easier for PRx recipients to access approved produce. Our technology runs dietary attribution against any retailer's products, allowing us to build an APL that includes culturally relevant foods that cater to diverse populations.

Greater accuracy, variety, and choice are the essential elements that lead to better PRx redemption and health outcomes.

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