Response of the food and beverage industry to the obesity threat.

Emory University, Emory Global Health Institute, 1599 Clifton Rd NE, Ste 6.101, Atlanta, GA 30322, USA.
JAMA The Journal of the American Medical Association (Impact Factor: 29.98). 10/2010; 304(13):1487-8. DOI: 10.1001/jama.2010.1436
Source: PubMed
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    ABSTRACT: Corporate voluntary pledges to improve the health of Americans have not been held to either explicit measurable outcomes or a framework for independent evaluation. The Healthy Weight Commitment Foundation (HWCF), whose members include 16 of the nation's leading consumer packaged goods (CPG) food and beverage manufacturers, voluntarily pledged to collectively sell 1 trillion fewer calories in the U.S. marketplace by 2012 (against a 2007 baseline), and sell 1.5 trillion fewer calories by 2015. This paper presents the findings of an independent evaluation of the 2012 HWCF marketplace pledge, conducted in 2013. The 16 HWCF companies collectively sold approximately 6.4 trillion fewer calories (-10.6%) in 2012 than in the baseline year of 2007. Taking into account population changes over the 5-year period of 2007-2012, CPG caloric sales from brands included in the HWCF pledge declined by an average of 78 kcal/capita/day. CPG caloric sales from non-HWCF national brands during the same period declined by 11 kcal/capita/day, and there were similar declines in calories from private label products. Thus, the total reduction in CPG caloric sales between 2007 and 2012 was 99 kcal/capita/day. This independent evaluation is the first to evaluate food industry compliance with its calorie reduction pledges and to assess how sales from the CPG food and beverage sector are changing. An accompanying paper investigates the extent to which the HWCF pledge affected household-level changes in CPG calories purchased, controlling for important economic and sociodemographic factors affecting household food purchases over this period.
    American journal of preventive medicine. 10/2014; 47(4):508-519.
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    ABSTRACT: To address the rise in non-communicable diseases (NCDs), governments are now being urged to 'put forward a multisectoral approach for health at all government levels, to address NCD risk factors and underlying determinants of health comprehensively and decisively' [UN, 2011. Political Declaration of the High-Level Meeting of the General Assembly on the Prevention and Control of Non-Communicable Diseases (No. A/66/L.1). New York, NY: United Nations]. There is a global consensus that whole-of-government approaches (WG) can be particu-larly effective in regulating products such as tobacco, pre-packaged foods and alcohol, which are or can be major risk factors for NCDs. Despite the overwhelming push towards interagency arrangements for health policymaking and implementation, including in contemporary efforts to prevent and control NCDs, there has been minimal investigation into how countries have pursued WG and which types of institutional designs and arrangements offer particular utility to achieve health objectives. This article examines these issues through a case study concerning the interagency mechanism that the Philippine govern-ment currently utilizes to govern tobacco control, the Interagency Committee— Tobacco (IAC-T). We conducted key informant interviews (n ¼ 33) with government officials, and representatives from civil society organizations, health professional associations and intergovernmental organizations. We targeted informants who have been involved in the work of the IAC-T and/or tobacco control policy more broadly. We also analysed public documents to contribute to our analysis of the structure, functioning and legal status of the IAC-T. Our findings highlight two salient challenges that arose in the Philippines case: (1) the inclusion of industry representation on the IAC-T and (2) the attempt to consolidate the responsibilities of the different departments through a policy of 'balance' between health and commercial interests. We analyse how health proponents navigated this challenging institutional arrangement and the various barriers they faced in achieving the intended health objectives. We draw from this case to discuss the lessons that can inform broad calls for WG to NCDs.
    Health Policy and Planning 08/2014; · 3.00 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Public health advocates have repeatedly highlighted parallels between food marketing and childhood obesity. Yet existing literature has not explored the connection between the promotion of unhealthy foods and beverages, certain characteristics of integrated marketing communication (IMC) and the power of multinational food and beverage companies. This is problematic because IMC represents the dominant marketing paradigm in use today. This article draws on critical theory and literature from across public health, marketing, business and related fields. By focusing on macro-level antecedents and interactions, this discussion highlights a previously unarticulated dimension of the promotion of unhealthy foods and beverages to children and adolescents. In doing so, this discussion aims to generate greater recognition of the broader environmental circumstances and processes that surround food marketing tactics and their consequences for public health nutrition. This perspective will also contribute to an expanded understanding of unhealthy food marketing and its unintended consequences, among an audience of nutrition, public health and policy communities.
    Critical Public Health 10/2014; 24(4). · 0.88 Impact Factor


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