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Food Letter 01

Food Letter 01

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Published by Sunlight Foundation

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Categories:Types, Letters
Published by: Sunlight Foundation on Apr 20, 2012
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial

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04/20/2012

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ChairmanJonLeibowitzFederalTradeCommission600PennsylvaniaAvenue,
NW
Washington,DC20580July13,2011SecretaryTomVilsackU.S.Department
of
Agriculture1400IndependenceAvenue,SWWashington,
DC
20250
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DirectorThomasFriedenCentersforDiseaseControlandPrevention1600CliftonRoadAtlanta,GA30333CommissionerMargaretHamburgFoodandDrugAdministration10903
New
HampshireAvenueSilverSpring,MD20993DearSecretaryVilsack,ChairmanLeibowitz,DirectorFrieden,andCommissionerHamburg:WearewritingregardingthePreliminaryProposedNutritionPrinciplesdeveloped
by
theInteragencyWorkingGroup
on
FoodMarketedtoChildren(IWG).Westronglysupportthesevoluntaryprinciples,andtheefforts
of
allfouragenciestopreventchildhoodobesity.Estimatesindicatethatobesitycostourcountrynearly$150billionin2008,andthatcostscontinuetoriseastheprevalence
of
obesityincreasesacrossthecountry.TheAmericanPublicHealthAssociationhasestimatedthatthesecostswillreachmorethan20%
of
healthcarespendingby2018,
if
theobesityepidemicisnotstemmed.CDCdatashowthattheprevalence
of
obesityhasnearlytripledsince1980.Furthermore,theprevalence
of
obesityinchildrenhasincreasedmorequicklythanadultobesityandnearlyone-third
of
ourchildrenarenoweitheroverweight
or
obese.Theleadingmedicalreasonformilitaryapplicantsbeingunqualifiedforserviceisobesityandoverweight.MissionReadinessnotedintheir2009reportthat27%
of
youngadultsintheUnitedStatesaretoooverweighttoserveinthemilitaryandthus"threaten...thefuturestrength
of
ourmilitary."Itisalarming,buttrue,thatchildrentodayarelikelytobethefirstgenerationtohaveashorterlifespanthantheirparents.Wearemovinginthewrongdirectionwhenitcomestothehealth
of
ourchildrenand
we
mustfocusonpublichealtheffortstopreventchildhoodobesity.InDecember2005,theInstitute
of
Medicine(10M)publishedastudyonfoodmarketingtochildrenandchildhoodobesity.Itnotedthatthereis"strongevidencethattelevisionadvertisinginfluencesthefoodandbeveragepurchaserequests
of
children."The
10M
panel
of
expertsalsoconcludedthat"foodandbeveragemarketinginfluencesthedietsandhealthprospects
of
childrenandyouth"andthat"foodandbeveragemarketingpracticesgearedtochildren
and
youthareout
of
balance
with
healthfuldietsandcontributeto
an
environmentthatputstheirhealthatrisk."

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