Quote:Big Food's Co-optation of Nutrition Professionals
by Michele Simon
For years now, I have been hearing about the food industryâ€™s influence on the annual conference of the American Dietetic Association â€” the nationâ€™s largest gathering of nutrition professionalsâ€“with some 7,000 registered dietitians in attendance. Last month, I witnessed it for myself and discovered the corporate takeover by Big Food was worse than I even imagined.
The top-paying sponsors, whom ADA called â€œpartners,â€ were Coca-Cola, Aramark, the National Dairy Council, and Hershey (their â€œCenter for Health and Nutritionâ€ â€“ really). â€œPremier sponsorsâ€ included PepsiCo, Mars, and General Mills.
The exhibit hall seemed more like a processed food trade show than a nutrition conference. I saw very few booths with actual information, apart from that being peddled by the likes of Nestle, Kraft, and McDonaldâ€™s, along with (of course), ubiquitous product samples, tastings, and myriad swag. (Oddly, Monsantoâ€™s booth featured its branded, soy-based lip balm.)
But the worst cooptation came during the â€œeducational sessions,â€ which should have been off limits to marketing. Numerous panels were hosted by industry players, including, â€œDairy Innovations,â€ brought to you by (surprise!) the National Dairy Council, which also hosted a media-only session, as did others...http://www.foodsafetynews.com/2011/10/pe...d-for-you/
But it's safe for consumers.
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