In an effort to reduce childhood obesity, several of the biggest US food companies announced that they will take 1.5 trillion calories out of their products by 2015 by changing recipes, introducing new lower calorie foods and reducing portion sizes. To make sure these companies actually follow up on their pledge, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation will evaluate how the groups’ efforts affect the number of calories consumed by children and adolescents.
This announcement was made through the Healthy Weight Commitment Foundation, a coalition of retailers, food and beverage manufacturers, and industry trade associations. This pledge is part of an agreement made with a group of nonprofit organizations concerned with childhood obesity.
Michelle Obama, who started her own anti-obesity Lets Move campaign earlier this year said, “This is precisely the kind of private sector commitment we need.” She has been urging the food company to get cracking on efforts to produce healthier foods and cut back on the marketing of unhealthy foods to kids.
The Healthy Weight Commitment Foundation counts General Mills Inc., ConAgra Foods Inc., Kraft Foods Inc., Kellogg Co., Coca-Cola Co., PepsiCo Inc. and Hershey Co among its 80-plus members, so I’m curious to see what changes will be made and which products will be affected.