Retail chain 7-Eleven has extended its fresh food program with the US national launch of Pick Smart, a selection of sandwiches, grilled items and packaged baked goods with lower fat and calorie content. Fresh food items carrying the Pick Smart label must have no more than 10 grams of fat and 420 calories.

Packaged fresh foods meeting those criteria will carry the 7-Eleven Pick Smart logo and will be priced the same as similar items, between US$1.59 and $3.69.

The first varieties being introduced include Chicken with Ancho Chili Lime Spread, Turkey and Ham Sandwich, Jerk Chicken Griller and Crispy Cereal Starrs.

Kathy Hasty, a 7-Eleven category manager for fresh foods, said: "This is the single most frequent request we get, 'When will you make lower-fat choices available too?' We didn't want to take so much flavour out to lower the fat and calorie count that consumers wouldn't enjoy them. Diet trends come and go, but I think the constant is that people are looking for more balance in all aspects of their lives. They don't want to be confined to any specific diet, but are looking for a more balanced lifestyle and to make better, healthier choices."