National Grocer

NGA's blog covering all things independent supermarket

Wellness in the Workplace

Mar 29, 2017

Alex Lee Inc., parent company of supermarket chain Lowes Food and wholesaler Merchants Distributors LLC, recently launched a new worksite wellness program designed to improve employees’ health and fitness. As we recognize National Nutrition Month this March, we’d like to give a hat tip to the NGA members for their efforts bring wellness initiatives to the workplace.

Employees of Alex Lee, Lowes Foods and Merchants Distributors are now able to personalize their fitness experience by selecting from a variety of classes – from boot camp to yoga – at local studios that best fit their needs and schedules. The employer-sponsored classes will be offered through Peerfit, a digital platform designed to help companies create a culture of wellness.

This move follows a trend in workplace wellness toward increasing personalization to give employees more customized options rather than big box gym discounts or gift cards. Many companies invest in workplace wellness, yet aren’t seeing the results they want. The most successful programs transcend the traditional “one-size-fits-all” approach and provide employees with the type of personalized service they’ve come to expect as consumers.

“Our employees are the cornerstone of our company, and we want to promote their health and well-being,” said Robert Vipperman, Alex Lee’s senior vice president of human resources and innovation. “This customized program is designed to increase participation – and enjoyment – in wellness activities,” said Robert Vipperman, Alex Lee’s senior vice president of human resources and innovation. “At Alex Lee, we want to unleash the full energy and talents of our employees, and we think Peerfit supports this goal.”

Peerfit is being rolled out to 3,000 of the company’s full-time employees in Hickory, Wilmington and Winston-Salem in North Carolina and Greenville in South Carolina, before being expanded companywide by the end of 2017.

“Active employees are happier, healthier and more productive,” said Edward J. Buckley, III, Peerfit’s CEO. “The key to employee engagement in wellness programs is convenience, fun and variety.”

Peerfit’s interactive social dashboard allows employees to plug into their social networks as well as Peerfit’s ready-built community of fitness enthusiasts for motivation and accountability. Employees can also invite their families and friends to join them for classes at local studios.

Alex Lee is a family-owned and operated company that employs approximately 10,000 people. Subsidiaries include Merchants Distributors, LLC, which provides full-service, wholesale distribution to supermarkets, and Lowes Foods, which includes nearly 100 full-service grocery stores in North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia, as well as Just Save food stores in North Carolina. 

Alex Lee Rollout 1