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Press Release

Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics and Proposition 37: The Facts

2012-10-08

Media Contacts: Ryan O'Malley, Allison MacMunn
800/877-1600, ext. 4769, 4802 media@eatright.org

CHICAGO – The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics is calling for voters to be made aware of an error in the California Official Voter Information Guide regarding Proposition 37, which inaccurately states that the Academy "has concluded that biotech foods are safe."

The false statement is used as an "Argument Against Proposition 37" in the voter's guide.

"We are concerned that California's voters are being misled to believe the nation's largest organization of food and nutrition professionals is against Proposition 37, when in fact, the Academy does not have a position on the issue," said registered dietitian Ethan A. Bergman, president of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.

"Voters need accurate information in order to make an informed choice," Bergman said.

The voter's guide was published by the Secretary of State, with a disclaimer that its accuracy has not been verified and that the opinions stated are those of the authors. An expired, and therefore invalid, position of the Academy apparently was used by the guide's authors to draw the erroneous conclusion regarding Proposition 37.

The Academy does not have a position on issues pertaining to labeling of genetically modified organisms (GMOs) or genetically engineered (GE) foods.

The inaccurate information has led to confusion and an inaccurate portrayal of in the media and health-care community of the Academy and its state affiliate, the California Dietetic Association.

"In addition to being untruthful, the statement attributed to the Academy may give voters a false impression of registered dietitians and the Academy. Our members are the nation's trusted and credible source of food and nutrition information," Bergman said.

As an evidence-based organization, the Academy extensively analyzes relevant scientific studies before taking a position on any issue and systematically reviews and updates its positions as needed. A new position paper that will address GMO and GE foods is expected to be published in 2013.

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The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (formerly the American Dietetic Association) is the world's largest organization of food and nutrition professionals. The Academy is committed to improving the nation's health and advancing the profession of dietetics through research, education and advocacy. Visit the Academy at www.eatright.org.