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Although the American Bakers Association supports Michelle Obama’s recent move to take a leadership position in tackling childhood obesity, the Washington, D.C.-based organization notes that it’s critically important for the first lady to recognize the significant contribution food manufacturers, including bakers, continue to play in providing healthy, wholesome and convenient food choices at relatively low price points for America's families.
“In the midst of the worst recession since the Great Depression, American families need to be reassured that their food bills will remain stable and that they will continue to have access to a variety of appealing food choices that fit with their individual tastes, lifestyle and cultures,” says Robb MacKie, ABA’s president and CEO. “American families need to be reassured that their food bills will remain stable and that they will continue to have access to a variety of appealing food choices that fit with their individual tastes, lifestyle and cultures.”
With grains currently positioned at the base of the Food Guide Pyramid, MacKie adds, bakers are focused on providing healthy, nutritious and wholesome products to consumers.
"It is vitally important to arm parents with the necessary information to assist them in making informed decisions regarding healthy, well-balanced lifestyles,” he notes. “The current review of the national nutrition guidelines ensures that the first lady's efforts are based on the latest science and medical evidence. This fact-based criteria is critical since so many consumers today are overwhelmed with a plethora of confusing, and often contradictory, information about nutrition.
"The baking industry,” he adds, “stands ready to fully engage in this important undertaking based on sound science that hopefully dispels many of the myths surrounding food and nutrition. Specifically, there is a tremendous opportunity to educate parents and children alike regarding the importance of both enriched and whole grains as an essential part of a balanced, healthy diet. By stressing healthy eating habits that follow the Dietary Guidelines for Americans and using the visual Food Guide Pyramid that encourages moderate daily physical activity, we can send a strong, positive and consistent message to consumers that makes sense and is attainable.”
Go to www.americanbakers.org for more information.