by Marion Nestle
Aug 31 2011

Food companies lagging in encouraging healthy diets? GMA says not at all

A few days ago I noted that an evaluation of food companies’ efforts to promote healthy diets to children came to gentle conclusions.  It praised the industry for what I thought were minimal actions.

No so says the Grocery Manufacturers Association (GMA), an industry trade group.  According to FoodNavigator, the GMA sent out an e-mailed press release saying:

The health and wellness of our consumers has always been a top priority, and we have significantly accelerated our effort to help consumers build healthier lifestyles in recent years.

…When it comes to responsible marketing practices, GMA and its member companies have taken the lead in voluntarily adopting and adhering to strict advertising criteria.

…The industry has extended its nutrition standards for marketing to children to include social media, mobile device advertising and video games.

Voluntary restrictions on food and beverage advertising are another important example of how our industry is doing its part….”

Hello?  The GMA’s statements are precisely why the restrictions need to be mandatory.