How Instacart Is Trying To Make Healthy Food More Accessible

In a climate where corporate activism and responsibility are more important than ever, The New York Times reports that some chief executives are hesitant to commit their company to change, let alone take actions beyond public statements. However, Fidji Simo, the CEO of Instacart, isn't one to shy away. On Wednesday, Sept. 28, 2022, she positioned her company among others as a leader in corporate social responsibility. With the launch of Instacart Health, she acknowledged the position her company holds in providing food and health for all.

Per Instacart, the company operates in partnership with 900 grocers and retailers so that consumers in 13 thousand cities across the United States can shop online for items and either pick them up at one of more than 75 thousand locations or have them delivered. But, as the leading grocery technology company in North America, Fidji Simo recognizes the responsibility her company holds. According to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), more than 10% of people in the U.S. are facing food insecurity. Additionally, The Washington Post reported that more than 222 million people live with diabetes, are considered pre-diabetic, or have some form of cardiovascular disease.

Simo said (via Instacart), "Instacart has become a staple in millions of households, which puts us at the heart of the relationship that people have with food and, therefore, their health. We have a responsibility to use the power of our platform ... to expand access to nutritious food and improve health outcomes."

Instacart Health

In collaboration with the White House Conference on Hunger, Nutrition, and Health, which Fidji Simo was a part of, Instacart Health is the company's initiative to make resources and education necessary for nutrition more accessible (via Instacart). With health professionals, hospitals, businesses, non-profit organizations, researchers, and policymakers on the company's side, Instacart Health breaks its mission into three categories: Increasing nutrition security, making healthy choices more accessible, and improving health outcomes. With its suite of new products and partnerships, Instacart Health uniquely and attentively addresses each.

For example, with its new product, Fresh Funds, Instacart Health allows any organization — from non-profits and insurance companies to healthcare providers and even employers — to provide stipends for people to buy food through Instacart. Additionally, per Instacart Health, through work with the USDA, it's now possible for those who receive government assistance for food through the SNAP program to buy their groceries online. By supporting public policy solutions and bringing food assistance programs online, Instacart Health makes it possible for people in underserved areas to get nutritious, affordable food delivered straight to the doors.

Another new program, Care Carts, allows healthcare providers and caregivers to order personalized nutrition plans, or "food prescriptions," through the Instacart app for their patients. The Instacart app will also come with new features, including Health Tags, Shoppable Recipes, and Lists made by food influencers and health experts, to educate users and help them easily identify the food items that suit their health needs.