Volume 107, Issue 6, Pages 1033-1043 (June 2007)
It is the position of the American Dietetic Association to encourage environmentally responsible practices that conserve natural resources, minimize the quantity of waste generated, and support the ecological sustainability of the food system—the process of food production, transformation, distribution, access, and consumption. Registered dietitians and dietetic technicians, registered, play various roles in the food system and work in settings where efforts to conserve can have significant effects. Natural resources that provide the foundation for the food system include biodiversity, soil, land, energy, water, and air. A food system that degrades or depletes its resource base is not sustainable. Making wise food purchases and food management decisions entails understanding the external costs of food production and foodservice and how these external costs affect food system sustainability. This position paper provides information, specific action-oriented strategies, and resources to guide registered dietitians and dietetic technicians, registered, in food decision making and professional practice. Food and nutrition professionals also can participate in policy making at the local, state, and national levels, and can support policies that encourage the development of local sustainable food systems. Our actions today have global consequences. Conserving and protecting resources will contribute to the sustainability of the global food system now and in the future.