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Temptation at Checkout

Across 30 grocery stores and other retailers, we found that candy, gum, energy bars, chips, cookies, soda, and other sugar drinks comprise the majority of food and beverages at checkout. Click through for our report.

(Un)Healthy Checkout

Funyuns, beef jerky, and candy add up to an unhealthy checkout. Walmart, you can do better! (Walmart, Washington, DC, 9/14)

Supercenters like Walmart carry a lot of non-food merchandise that would be great at checkout. Isn't it a shame that most of the registers look like this, loaded with chips and cookies instead? (Walmart, Washington, DC, 9/14)

Hospitals promote health and wellness. So why is this one pushing ice cream at checkout in its cafeteria? (Johns Hopkins Hospital, Baltimore, MD, 9/14)

Unfortunately, this Home Depot pushes candy at checkout. No one comes to a home improvement store for candy--so why's it there? (Home Depot, Bethesda, MD, 9/14)

This Home Depot offers batteries and gadgets at checkout. If this photo is any indication, nonfood items like this sell well! (Home Depot, Washington, DC, 7/14)

These Starbucks drinks are loaded with sugar. Walmart, please promote water or seltzer instead. (Walmart Supercenter, Bechtelsville, PA, 8/14)

Looking for protein-on-the-go? Slim Jims are an unhealthy choice. Walmart, you can do better! (Walmart Supercenter, Bechtelsville, PA, 8/14)

In the UK, shoppers give cashiers cards to indicate whether the checkout aisle is healthy or not. Healthy checkouts pass; junk food aisles fail.

What is a clothing store like Old Navy doing pushing Air Heads, Pop Rocks, and Juicy Drop Pops at checkout? Clothing stores should sell clothes, not food. (Old Navy, Washington, DC, 7/14)

We're disappointed to see that Giant's family checkout aisle is loaded with chips and candy. Family-friendly ought to mean 100% healthy food choices or else toys, books, and games. (Giant, Washington, DC, 7/14)

Thanks to CVS for urging its customers to "go nuts" for single-serve nuts at checkout. Nuts can be part of a healthy checkout. (CVS, Washington, DC, 7/14)

Bed Bath and Beyond sells Milky Way candy bars at checkout. We think they should stick to kitchen gadgets instead. (Bed Bath and Beyond, Washington, DC, 7/14)

What's Barnes & Noble doing selling Godiva chocolates at checkout? Stick to books & e-readers, please! (Barnes & Noble, Washington, DC, 7/14)

Look! When fruit is offered at checkout, people buy it. Time to ditch the brownies and cupcakes for oranges and apples! (7-Eleven, Washington, DC, 7/14)

How refreshing! This checkout at Costco has no soda, no candy, nada. (Costco, Arlington, VA, 7/14)

Chocolate at checkout is so ubiquitous, it's even in department stores! (Lord & Taylor, Washington, DC, 7/14)

Checkout in the US Department of Agriculture's cafeteria does not support the agency's own Dietary Guidelines for Americans. Fewer chips and candy, and more real food please, USDA! (USDA Cafeteria, Washington, DC, 6/14)

What is Books-a-Million doing selling calorie bombs like the world's largest gummy bear at checkout? At 5 pounds, it's the equivalent of 1,400 regular sized gummy bears and packs a whopping 6,120 calories. Bookstores should sell books instead of marketing junk food to kids! (Books-a-Million, Washington, DC, 7/14)

Here's another peek at healthy checkout in the UK. These healthier choices are significantly lower in saturated fat and salt than candy and chips. (Lidl, UK, 5/14)

UK discount retailer Lidl has only healthier options in all its checkout aisles, such as dried fruits, seeds, and tea. (Lidl, UK, 5/14)

Naturally Savvy calls out Toys R Us for marketing candy to kids at checkout: "Both sides of the Toys "R" Us checkout aisle are lined from beginning to end with junk food, up until you reach the cash register." It's time for that to change! (3/14)

Even Babies R Us sells candy at checkout. With so many cute, tiny offerings -- baby shoes, baby socks, bibs, and pacifiers -- they could certainly offer better choices! (Babies R Us, Las Vegas, NV, 6/14)

After a recent shopping trip to three non-food retailers caused her to eat 1000 calories she didn't need, Snack Girl decides to ask Home Depot, JC Penney, and Dick's Sporting Goods to get rid of the candy and soda at checkout. (5/14)

UK retailer Tesco puts customer health ahead of business as usual in its decision to ditch the candy at checkout. Now all checkout aisles at all Tescos across the UK will be candy-free. Let's do this in the United States too! (5/14)

Candy crush! Checkout treats banned here