QR codes featured on in-store displays and on grocery shelves have been around for a while – you can scan to download a digital coupon, or to get product information. But a new partnership now aims to combine the best of both, by letting you both learn and save while you shop.

The better-for-you product savings app Merryfield has joined forces with the smart shelf tag provider Cornerstone for Natural to launch a new consumer education, incentives and rewards program called Learn & Earn. In the coming weeks and months, they say shoppers will begin seeing special shelf tags for participating brands, in participating stores, that will provide you with information and savings with a simple scan from your phone.

The companies describe Learn & Earn as a “one-of-a-kind solution that combines in-store consumer education with the power of digital incentives at-shelf.” Just use your smartphone camera to scan a QR code on the shelf, and you’ll get information about the product, educational content – and savings.

Merryfield users already get at least 5% back, and sometimes more, every time they scan a receipt showing the purchase of a product from any of dozens of participating better-for-you brands. Learn & Earn users will unlock additional, exclusive Merryfield-powered offers to encourage you to buy the participating product right then and there.


Actress, musician and entrepreneur Zooey Deschanel, who now serves as Merryfield’s Chief Creative Officer, says the new program will make it easier to access information about – and save money on – the products you buy. “With Merryfield’s new Learn & Earn program, we can bring honest, on-demand information to people right in store aisles and pair it with new digital product incentives,” she said in a statement. “Inflation is impacting what people can buy and where they shop. Every bit of savings will help people.”

Cornerstone for Natural had previously partnered with retailers like Fresh Thyme Market, and with United Natural Foods’ suppliers and retailers, to offer its shelf tags in stores. So far, the emphasis has been on product information – while the tags “may include promotional offers,” the broader goal is to promote product transparency by helping shoppers “better understand the benefits, features and attributes of the products they are considering and the companies that produce them,” Cornerstone for Natural explained.

But now, the partnership with Merryfield brings the potential for savings front-and-center. Shoppers who are interested in learning more about a product, can get an exclusive Merryfield offer as part of the package – while those who are most interested in the savings, can learn more about the product in the process. And the smaller, natural and independent grocery stores that feature the shelf tags that Cornerstone for Natural offers, and the brands that Merryfield promotes, stand to benefit as well.

“Natural food stores, food co-ops and independent grocery stores are inherently at a disadvantage compared to big chain and big-box stores,” Merryfield founder and CEO David Mayer said in a statement. “Learn & Earn is a super-easy-to-implement way to deliver digital in-store education paired with powerful at-shelf digital promotion tools that are usually just the domain of the biggest chains.”

Merryfield launched in 2020, joining a crowded field of savings apps but offering a healthy twist – all participating brands must meet a set of standards created by Merryfield, ensuring that all products are free from artificial ingredients or unnecessary chemicals, among many other attributes. So buying a brand featured on Merryfield not only provides you savings in the form of points redeemable for gift cards, but it provides some peace of mind that every participating brand offers Merryfield-approved products that are safe for your family.

Merryfield and Cornerstone for Natural say Learn & Earn will go live “with select retail partners in early 2023.” So keep an eye out for QR codes at a natural food store near you. A simple scan could help you make smarter decisions while you shop – and save you some money in the process.

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