ViviSmart, alliance for health


ViviSmart, Feeding Moving and Living Better. This is the project presented today by Coop Italia in synergy with the Ministry of Health, as well as the Barilla and Danone groups and their foundations. (1)

A good living education project rooted in the culture of prevention. Health begins at the table, with good eating habits consistent with the Mediterranean food pyramid model. And it cannot go without regular exercise.

ViviSmart aspires to improve the living conditions of the Italian population, starting from school age. With a pragmatic approach-hence the acronym Smart, Specific Measurable Achievable Realistic Timely-that therefore moves from a pilot project.

It starts in Milan, Genoa, Parma, Bari. With a public-private synergy targeting 2.5 million citizens of all ages and spanning multiple presences:

25 family physicians support 100 families with nutrition counseling activities,

16 schools, 64 classrooms, 1,500 children receive ad hoc education programs,

16 Coop Italy stores are equipped with special totems where visual information and animated physical interactions are offered,

a website,, an App, social networks. In the spirit ofEdutainment, Education and Entertainment, logical and playful tools at the same time, to educate without boredom.

The pilot project kicks off on September 30, 2017-after two years of work, launched during Expo Milano-and lasts for one year. In May 2018, results will be measured with a view to possible corrections and further development. At the national and international level, confirm the top management of Danone, Barilla and Coop. The latter has already garnered the interest of French allies in the Leclerc Group on this initiative.

Health Minister Beatrice Lorenzin; Cyrille Auguste, CEO of Danone Italia; Francesco Del Porto, president of Barilla Italia; Marco Pedroni, president of Coop Italia.

Minister Beatrice Lorenzin dwells on Italy’s pioneering role in a synergy that pairs private distribution and industry giants with the Health Ministry and primary care physicians. To whom, according to surveys, citizens entrust their first instances of nutrition.

Marco Pedroni, president of Coop Italia, focuses on the concept of the common good. ViviSmart has no commercial implications; instead, it meets Coop’s ethical values and pursues public health goals. Thus, the focus will also be on those segments of the population whose income, education and geographical location make it more difficult for them to access a healthy diet and lifestyle.

Giuseppe Ruocco – director general of the Ministry of Health who has always been involved in preventive health care – highlights the centrality of the diet-health link. Which is not only at the core of the Gaining Health protocol, but also at the core of WHO commitments. (2) Malnutrition must be addressed globally in all its expressions, from deficiency (of nutrients and/or trace elements) to imbalance to excess.

Salvatore Castiglione, president of Danone Foundation, which has been operating in Italy for 26 years, explains Edutainment‘s journey. That starts with water, the first element of our body, and it is therefore good not to replace with soft drinks. To then move up the food pyramid and thus fruits, vegetables, grains, dairy products. Not forgetting meats, which in turn fit into the context of the balanced Mediterranean diet.

With best wishes for a successful completion of the project, and its wider development!

Dario Dongo


(1) It starts with the ABCD, Barilla Coop Danone Alliance. Hoping to reap fine participations to reach Z (Zara pasta or Zanetti coffee?).

(2) The Nutrition Decade 2016-2025 has been declared by the UN as an imperative need for the public health of the world’s population. See nti/’food-product-improvement’-nutritional-criteria-and-‘marketing’-how-to-address-the-growing-epidemic-of-obesity-and-diabetes

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Dario Dongo, lawyer and journalist, PhD in international food law, founder of WIISE (FARE - GIFT - Food Times) and Égalité.