Grocery shopping with one allergy or diet restriction is stressful and time consuming—let alone shopping for an entire family with multiple food allergies and other restrictions. Sifter's powerful Shop By Diet technology was designed to make it easy to find the right foods for complex diet needs. To show how this works, Sifter followed Petra H., a hardworking mom who handles the family grocery trips. Petra has an 11-year-old daughter who is severely allergic to all tree nuts and seeds, particularly pistachios and sesame seeds. Petra also has an 8-year-old son who is sensitive to dairy, and a husband whose doctor has advised him to follow a low carb and low sodium diet to manage heart-related issues.
Petra says that the typical grocery shopping experience was “stressful, time-consuming, and monotonous,” and she typically stuck with many of the same “safe” products to speed up the process. Managing multiple dietary conditions and finding foods that accommodate everyone was next to impossible and limited the variety of meals that she and her family prepared.
A nutrition specialist on the Sifter team helped Petra set up a MyDiet Profile on the Sifter platform that incorporated the dietary needs of her entire family. Petra used this profile to create a shopping list of potentially safe foods available at her local grocery store, then went to the store and shopped from her Sifter list. At the store, Petra also used Sifter’s Scan By Diet feature to determine, on the fly, if a food item not on her list fit her family’s needs. Using her smartphone, Petra could scan package bar codes to instantly screen whether the product potentially fit her family’s MyDiet Profile.
Petra reported that the Sifter tool was “easy to use, convenient, and saved time in the grocery store.” She estimated it will save her “at least 15 minutes” on regular grocery shopping trips. Petra also found new products that she wouldn’t have known about and plans to incorporate them into her regular grocery repertoire. Overall, Petra found that using Sifter saved time, energy, and provided a greater variety of potential food choice options and added confidence while shopping for healthy and safe choices.
Sifter user study with Petra H. Interviews conducted April 20, 2023, and May 17, 2023.
According to FARE (Food Allergy Research & Education), the nation’s leading food allergy organization, food allergies and intolerances are a large and growing public health concern for more than 33 million Americans with life-threatening food allergies, and 85 million that are directly and indirectly affected by food allergies or intolerances to one of the top nine food allergens (milk, egg, peanut, tree nuts, soy, sesame, wheat, fish, and crustacean shellfish). Avoiding purchase of foods that contain one or more food allergens or ingredients derived from them is critical to avoid life-threatening reactions.
With Sifter’s broad range of dietary filters beyond the top nine food allergens, along with an "exclude ingredients" feature, users can create a personal or family profile that addresses food allergy and other health considerations, and shop for foods that potentially fit.