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Pick n Pay's Fresh Living magazine now available in Braille

Pick n Pay’s Fresh Living magazine is now available in Braille, making it the first supermarket in South Africa to offer this to its customers.

The May issue of Fresh Living was recently piloted in Braille with 250 visually-impaired customers, and following a very positive response, will officially be trialled for two months in selected stores across the country. 

The June Fresh Living Braille edition launched in selected stores this week and can be picked up at the Customer Care Desk.

Free to Smart Shopper customers, Fresh Living has grown from 60 000 copies at launch to over 500 000 copies per month. It provides readers with lifestyle inspiration, the latest food and drink news and accessible, everyday family recipes with each edition.

It is this popularity that led a loyal customer, Jennine Britz, to contact Pick n Pay and offer her Braille translation services in order to share her favourite magazine with the visually-impaired community of South Africa. 

Classified as blind, Britz has worked closely with Pick n Pay and Fresh Living’s publisher John Brown since September last year to develop the sample copy and make the Braille edition of Fresh Living a reality. 

The edition was piloted in April with the Centres for the Blind in KwaZulu-Natal, Cape Town, Port Elizabeth, Bloemfontein and Johannesburg. Copies were shared with visually impaired readers who shared their feedback and ideas on how to refine the Braille version.

“Fresh Living magazine is a wonderfully inclusive publication, and this takes us one excellent step further,” says John Bradshaw, marketing: retail executive at Pick n Pay. 

Britz says that the foundation of her Braille printing company came from her experience as a blind person living in a sighted-persons world. “This is a daily struggle, especially when it comes to using any form of public facility. Pick n Pay is one of a handful of companies who understand my vision of improving public facilities for the blind by having more consideration for their blind consumers. Through the Braille version of Fresh Living, Pick n Pay has brought overwhelming excitement and appreciation to me and hundreds of Braille readers across the country,” she says.

Editor of Fresh Living, Justine Drake, says: “At Fresh Living, we make much of celebrating and embracing our differences, and our decision to print a Braille version of the country’s largest food and lifestyle magazine seemed to present a really tangible way to demonstrate this. I hope it brings much joy and inspiration to our blind and partially sighted communities”

“We listen carefully to our customers and we’re really grateful that Jennine got in touch so that we could expand Fresh Living’s reach to our visually-impaired customers. It’s been a rewarding learning process to launch the Braille edition and we are excited to share it in store with our customers during the next phase of the trial,” says Bradshaw. 

The Fresh Living Braille edition will be trialled in selected Pick n Pay stores and Centres for the Blind nationally for June and July and may be expanded based on customer feedback.

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