Healthy Weight Commitment: Major Food and Beverage Companies Reduce More Than 1.5 Trillion Marketplace Calories
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CHICAGO – The Healthy Weight Commitment Foundation announced Thursday that its 16 participating companies have already surpassed their goal of reducing 1.5 trillion calories sold in the marketplace by 2015. The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics praised the announcement as a positive example of the effect of public-private partnerships on the public’s health.
The announcement came in Washington, D.C., at an event held by the Bipartisan Policy Center, "Calorie Cutback: Progress Report on 2010 Commitment to Reduce Calories in the Marketplace."
Two years ago, 16 food and beverage companies within the HWCF said they would together decrease 1.5 trillion calories sold by 2015 in an effort to address obesity. A preliminary analysis by HWCF has found the companies successfully exceeded their goal in 2012.
Preliminary data also suggest that all 16 participating food and beverage companies introduced lower-calorie products and that consumers shifted purchases from higher-calorie products to lower-calorie products. Data verification and analysis is still being finalized and will be reported later in the year.
"The Healthy Weight Commitment Foundation is a clear example of how partnerships between organizations can make a significant difference in addressing more effectively the public’s health," said Patricia Babjak, chief executive officer of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, which has supported HWCF initiatives. "When influential organizations make a commitment to fight obesity, major milestones can be achieved in a short time."
According to registered dietitian nutritionist and Academy President Ethan A. Bergman: "Reducing the number of calories in the marketplace creates an environment that assists Americans in attaining an appropriate energy balance that can lead to healthier lives. Our congratulations to the companies that successfully reduced the number of available calories in their products. Commitments such as these are critical to reversing the obesity epidemic."
The HWCF is a CEO-led coalition consisting of 16 food and beverage corporate partners, and more than 230 organizations dedicated to help reduce obesity – especially childhood obesity – by 2015. It focuses on improving family and school environments to help people achieve a healthy weight through energy balance.
The Academy has been involved in the HWCF since its inception – notably as the HWCF sponsors Energy Balance for Kids with Play (EB4K with Play), which is led by registered dietitian nutritionists who serve as "coaches." The evidence-based program promotes nutrition, physical activity and energy-balance knowledge and behavior changes in schools. The Academy's Foundation Kids Eat Right and Playworks collaborate on EB4K in three states to positively affect the entire school wellness environment.
All registered dietitians are nutritionists – but not all nutritionists are registered dietitians. The Academy's Board of Directors and Commission on Dietetic Registration have determined that those who hold the credential registered dietitian (RD) may optionally use "registered dietitian nutritionist" (RDN) instead. The two credentials have identical meanings.
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. To locate a registered dietitian in your area, visit the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics at www.eatright.org.