The HFI Protocol

What questions should you be asking your customers?

HFI Protocol features in campaigning video

Education is the key to health food stores working with GPs – a College of Medicine and ITN Production film featuring the HFI 

A guide for sales staff advising and selling in a health food shop


Everyone employed in the sales area of a health food shop wanting to give a customer sound, helpful advice needs to listen to the customer. There are many factors that influence a person’s health. So to avoid any confusion, and to get an immediate understanding of the customer’s reason for seeking advice, you will need to ask a series of relevant questions.

For some decades now the Health Food Institute has offered participants of its training courses a means of understanding how to proceed with a customer’s enquiry relating to a health problem without compromising the ethics and legal constraints imposed on retailers.

This is known as the Health Food Institute Protocol.

The Protocol is an important aspect of working in a health food store – please contact us for details on how your store can achieve certification. More detailed examples of how to apply it are given in Level One Module Two of the Health Food Institute Professional Diploma Course. 

For further information contact the Administrator, Health Food Institute, Health Food Institute, Unit 10, Blenheim Park Road, Nottingham, NG6 8YP or email