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Food Groups Call for Sound Science in Dietary Guidelines Updates

Apr 23, 2010

IDFA and 10 other food organizations recently urged federal officials to encourage the Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee to use sound scientific principles that may be easily understood and used by consumers. The committee is reviewing updates for the 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans, which is expected to be released at the end of the year.

In a letter to Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack and Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, the groups said striking a proper balance between physical activity and recommended dietary intake would help with the issues of obesity and weight control. They also stressed the need to avoid oversimplifying the choices in a balanced diet by steering clear of language that would brand any one food or beverage category as "good" or "bad."

The groups noted their appreciation for the opportunity to participate this year in public forums and webinars concerning the Dietary Guidelines. However, they believe the process used during the 2005 update, which opened the scientific questions and evidence reviews to the public for review, provided greater transparency and opportunity for industry to engage throughout process.

"We feel strongly that as much information as is allowed under Federal Advisory Committee Act (FACA) rules should be open and available for public review and input during the DGAC process with electronic access wherever possible," the letter stated.

In addition to IDFA, the groups signing the letter were the American Bakers Association, the American Beverage Association, the American Frozen Food Institute, the American Sugar Alliance, the Juice Products Association, the National Confectioners Association, the National Corn Growers Association, the National Pasta Association, the Snack Food Association and The Sugar Association.

Read the letter here.

For more information, contact Ruth Saunders, IDFA vice president of policy and legislative affairs, at


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