Proof that consumer demand affects change at the grocery store!

It’s been over 5 years since I’ve grabbed a last-minute snack in the check-out lane at the grocrey store because there really are no options that I can eat (or would even want to eat for that matter). The candy bars that used to call my name as I unloaded my groceries no longer even register in my mind as “food.” I really don’t even notice them anymore.

But the goodies in the check-out lane pictured here sure did catch my attention recently, so I thought I’d share! Click the photo to enlarge for a better view! (If you live in Omaha, NE….this selection was spotted at the Hy-Vee store on 132nd & Dodge Street.)

This check-out lane features none of the typical candy bars and chewing gum varieties. Instead, a selection of nuts, trail mix, fruit leathers, granola bars and Larabars greets shoppers here. (Not to say that all of these are perfect options, either, but it’s definitely a start!) And, yes, that is FRESH FRUIT you see in the bins at the top! Wild, huh? Something I can actually eat!

I first spotted this delightful check-out lane about 5 or 6 months ago. And, when I inquired (because, of course, I did!), I was told that it was something new they were “trying out” at this Hy-Vee location. It’s just in the one check-out lane (for now), but at least they are doing something! And the fact that this display is still standing all these months later…well, hopefully that means something, as well!!

What changes have you noticed that indicate some things are heading in the right direction with our food situation these days? We’d love to hear from you in the comments section below! Or if you have pictures or other details you’d prefer to send in, please email us! We’d love to add your ideas to this article!

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Pecan-Date Snack Bars

CHECK OUT OUR RECIPES PAGE FOR MORE GREAT RECIPES!!!

Makes eight bars

INGREDIENTS:

1 1/3 cups of pitted and roughly chopped Medjool dates

2 cups plain pecans (not roasted nor salted)

DIRECTIONS:
Preheat oven to 350  degrees.

Place dates in a medium bowl and cover them completely with  water. Allow to soak for 20 minutes.

Meanwhile, process the pecans in a food processor until they  resemble the texture of breadcrumbs.

When the dates are done soaking,  drain the water. Add dates to the food processor and process with the nuts until  well-combined and dough comes together into a ball.

Line a 7″ x 11″  baking pan with parchment paper – this makes clean-up easier. (Two bread pans  would make a great substitute if you don’t have a 7″ x 11″ pan.)
Press  dough evenly into the pan, pressing firmly with your hands to compact the  mixture as much as possible. (It’s helpful to wet your hands with water to  prevent batter from sticking to your fingers.)

Bake for about 10 minutes,  until the top looks a bit dry. Transfer to a cooling rack and cool completely  (about one hour).

Transfer bars (with parchment paper) to a cutting  board, and cut into eight bars. Enjoy!

These bars are also delicious when  enjoyed frozen for increased sweetness and firmness.

CHECK OUT OUR RECIPES PAGE FOR MORE GREAT RECIPES!!!