by Marion Nestle
Jun 27 2014

Lobbying in action: pizza!

This just in from Politico Morning Agriculture:

At their recent Capitol Hill fly-in, members of the American Pizza Community — which included representatives from Domino’s Pizza, Godfather’s, Little Caesars, Papa John’s and Pizza Hut — met with more than 70 congressional offices, according to a statement from the APC. Part of their ask was for lawmakers to back the Common Sense Nutrition Disclosure Act. The bill, which was introduced about a year ago by Reps. Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-Wash.) and Loretta Sanchez (D-Calif.), would exempt grocery stores from the ACA menu labeling requirements and allow restaurants to disclose calorie counts online.

American Pizza Community?  Indeed, yes.

The American Pizza Community is a coalition of the nation’s largest pizza companies, regional chains, local pizzerias, small franchise operators, supplier partners and other entities that make up the American pizza industry. This joint effort will highlight the importance of the pizza industry on American communities and promote policies that permit its continued success, including reasonable menu labeling standards, including small business owners in tax reform, commodity policies and employment and labor policies.

The APC knows how to work the system.  Meeting with 70 congressional offices takes some hefty organizational work.

This is, no doubt, how pizza came to be counted as a vegetable in the school lunch program.

Happy weekend!



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  • I actually believe that the tomato sauce on a pizza can contribute to our veggie intake. If we add tomato paste to spaghetti sauce and season it, it counts. Why doesn’t it count on pizza? If it’s high in salt, deal with the salt. If there isn’t very much, don’t count a full portion size. Pizza can be a beautiful and healthy food, it’s a social food, delicious. Once someone makes a lower sugar and sodium ketchup, I’m going to count it as a veggie too. I’m an RD, and proud to be a pizza lover!

  • Mitzi

    Pizza can be healthy- if you make it at home, piled high with veggies, and without the oil so heavy you could run a diesel engine on it. Pasta and pizza sauces are higher per serving in sodium than most ketchups- I know because I have to watch sodium for a family member. I make my own from unsalted tomato sauce and plain herbs.
    Most commercial pizza is quite nasty health-wise. A slab of refined flour and fat, topped with highly salted sauce, cheeses, and meats dripping in oil.Most of the meats are processed with nitrates, and no vitamin C source is served to blunt the cancer risk. I find commercial pizzas indigestible. And the pizza served in schools is even worse- an unrecognizable oily orange rectangle (just enough tomato for an orange tinge), topped with a thin layer of the cheapest of cheeses, and no veggies in sight. It may contain a few bits of pepperoni-like mystery meat. We used to pile napkins on top of the inedible mass in school, to see how many the grease would soak through. May the lobbyists be forced to eat by the rules they advocate.

  • Lisa Long

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