Canada's business magazine for traditional natural health retailers

How Learning Differences Affect On-the-Job Training

Social scientists have done much research on how people learn and have defined the differences among learners through a variety of paradigms. One common and widely used paradigm identifies three learning styles: auditory, visual, and kinesthetic.

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Merchandising your store from a human resources perspective

In life, we are often judged by our appearances. While this is unfortunate, it is reality. In a business setting where we are attempting to sell a product, we are not only selling the item, but we are selling our store, our service and our people. This is no different and perhaps even more important in the health store world since people expect us to look good and never catch a cold.Is your staff a reflection of your store? Do their personal lifestyle and physical appearance mimic the image you are attempting to project as a business owner?

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Smiles, music, scents

Facial expressions determine how you feel. New science has shown that our brain has six emotional centers. In the book The Emotional Life of Your Brain, they review this research. Studies now prove a smile or a frown often determines if you are feeling up or down. MRI imaging shows how smiling fires neurons in the area of the brain recognized for storing positive emotions while a frown fires neurons in another area that stores negative emotions. Smiling releases positive hormones and feelings throughout the body, so whenever you recommend 5 HTP to improve someone's mood, suggest taking it with a smile.

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Trends in Natural Health

CNHR Exclusive!

In an exclusive interview with CNHR, Marian Berelowitz, an editor of JWTIntelligence, took some time to share what she sees are some of the hot trends that pertain to our industry. JWTIntelligence is a popular destination for people looking for the latest business trends. JWTIntelligence is part of JWT (formerly known as J. Walter Thompson) and calls itself a center for provocative thinking that is a part of JWT, the world's best-known marketing communications brand. We make sense of the chaos in a world of hyper-abundant information and constant innovation—finding quality amid the quantity." JWTIntelligence focuses on identifying changes in the global "zeitgeist" or spirit of the time, so as to convert shifts into compelling opportunities for brands.

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Produce does its part in keeping the planet green

Everywhere you look these days, you see how people are becoming more green or sustainable in their lives and looking for places to shop that reflect their values. Many stores have been running their business with these principles for years,­ offering recycling, providing cloth bags, or redesigning or building their store to meet LEED certification. Every department pitches in one way or the other and the produce department is no exception.

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Employee orientation essential for new hires

Recently hired people need not only training in the responsibilities for their specific jobs, but also an orientation to the policies, customs and expectations required of all employees. Natural retailers have the further responsibility of orienting new workers to the owners' philosophy of health and nutrition.

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Connect and thrive

If you're reading this article, you're in the healing business. That means you very likely understand the basics of what we require to maintain health: nutritious food, regular activity, adequate rest – and, of course, judicious use of supplements, natural health products and self-care! But there is another aspect of creating optimal health that doesn't get much play. Research shows a consistent link between the quantity and quality of our social connections and our risk of death from a wide range of causes. (1) On the other hand, strong connections lead to stronger immune function and longevity. (2) And, undoubtedly, healthy relationships boost our mood and outlook.

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Experience the "experience"

Before I retired from one of Canada's most successful retail organizations, I had many opportunities to travel across Canada and the US to visit many different retailers and their stores. That was one of the "fringe benefits" of the job.

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Helping customers find the right product

The Recommender

Perhaps the most important role in the natural product business is the role of the recommender... the person who helps choose which product will bring the greatest benefit and value to the end user, the consumer.

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Spring clean your store

Spring is in the air and it's time for one of my favourite activities of the year, spring cleaning. Nothing feels better than getting rid of the old and possibly bringing in the new. Spring is a time of renewal and re-awakening and provides us with a great opportunity to de-clutter and re-fresh our workspace and surrounding environment.

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Picking the Perfect Produce

Two things occurred last week: first, I was working in a produce department. As I worked, I was watching a customer pick out a pineapple; as he picked up each one, he would flick it with his index finger to check for ripeness. Then he would pull out a leaf from the green top, and finally he would smell it. Of course only one of these - smelling - will let him know ripeness. Then I watched a woman shake and listen to a plum. This got me thinking that many produce customers could use a lesson in the world of picking produce. So here we go with a few of your summer favourites!

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The art of sales in a produce department

I was walking through the park the other day and stopped to watch a woman painting a landscape.

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Sit and Play

What is it about your job that brings you the most joy

You love working produce and it is evident in everything you do: You set a great produce stand that is so beautiful people comment on it daily. Your customers love you. People come from miles around to shop your department even when there are stores closer to their home. You are the local farmers' best friend. You have the best selection of local produce in town and pay a fair price. Your years of experience have given you a wealth of organic produce knowledge. You love the food, and your passion is infectious.

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Produce Section Time Management

Reviewing how you spend your day can reveal some simple ways to regain lost minutes or hours

I'd like to touch on a few areas of difficulty I run into most often in produce departments, with the aim of helping readers recognize and eliminate obstacles to running a productive and efficient department.

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Growing your natural pet food section

Marketing expert Doug Muldoon and retail managers Christine Lyon and Tammy Burns of Foodsmiths give us a glimpse into the multi-million dollar pet industry and ways to tell us how to take advantage of this growing market.

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Interview Right

The job interview is your best tool for making the right hiring decision. You can't count on references, and resumes are designed to make the candidate look good.

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Seasonal Merchandising

Health food stores aren't the typical shopping venue for the average Christmas gift seeker. That being said, it is the busiest shopping season of the year and savvy health store owners would be smart to plan some sort of Christmas promotion.

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The bottom line

Today's natural product shopper is quite often looking for more than just the best deal on the goods they buy. Of course, price is important especially in challenging economic times. Yet, we're seeing a greater number of people who have elevated consciousness regarding the products they buy. They want to know what's behind the product, how is it produced, who are the growers, how was it processed, etc. For some, this quest for knowledge might seem excessive, but if these products command a premium, they will have to stand up to greater scrutiny.

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Living life off auto-pilot

Einstein famously stated that the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result. Most of us agree with Einstein, in theory. Yet, just about as many of us definitely qualify for his diagnosis.

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The environment is changing in more ways than one

In 1997, the majority of retailers and suppliers were pioneers and founders of the health food industry and most had family-run businesses. Now, the majority of the health food industry is owned by very large corporations. This is not unusual in a high growth market, as corporations look for continual growth and shareholder return. That said, it does take some getting used to.

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CNHR News Podcast

cnhr radio hour

News, Views and Happenings in the world of Canadian Natural Health.

Check out this month's podcast here

Your customers have spoken.  The numbers are convincing: Canada’s natural health retailers turn to CNHR for your new products.  A survey conducted in June 2020 shows retailers read the ads and Product Profiles, and react to them.  They order products they’ve seen in CNHR.  They look for your new products in CNHR.  Reach your customers via CNHR by print, video and/or podcast.  Various opportunities available to fit any budget. 

• Launch your new products

• Support your sales team

• Be visible as stores re-focus and re-charge

• Stake your position in the “new normal”

• Reach more stores – from coast to coast

• Introduce your company to new potential customers • Combine CNHR’s print, video and podcast options


New!  Product profile package

Retailers want to see more of your new products.  So, we’re making it easier for you and them. 

Introducing our new Product Profile Package:  a three-pronged way to reach retailers by combining print, video and podcast.  You get all three!

PRINT:  Claim a spot on CNHR’s Product Profile pages, mailed to health food stores coast to coast, and read by over 10,000 retail store buyers, owners, managers and staff.

VIDEO:  This is new for CNHR – video product reviews.  You’ll get a 30 second review of your product with product image and voiceover.  Five products per video, then e-blasted to CNHR’s database, to be shared among staff and with the store’s customers.   

PODCAST:  Also a new feature.  Your product will get a mention on the New Products portion of the popular CNHR News Podcast, hosted by CNHR editor Bruce Cole and Deane Parkes.   Your company name, product name, a couple of lines, followed with your company contact information.

Three-platform exposure for your new products, delivered by CNHR, the trusted source of industry information retailers have counted on for 24 years.   Three platforms for $699.00

The Product Profile Package is FREE to all full or half page advertisers!

For more information please contact:

Phone: 800.663.6580