Anti-fat Attackers Undermine Their Cause

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Sandi
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Anti-fat Attackers Undermine Their Cause

Postby Sandi » Wed Feb 12, 2014 4:47 pm

The war between the food industry and it anti-obesity attackers heats up.

Food activists serve three very important roles. They create public awareness about an important societal issue like obesity; they change attitudes and buying behavior; and ideally, as a result, they spotlight the next best revenue opportunity for industries that meet these new needs. However, a point comes when activism stops being constructive and becomes counterproductive hyperactivism. With respect to obesity, we’ve reached that point.

The problem is that instead of laser focusing on solving the biggest issue related to food consumption, obesity, hyperactivists bundle a host of food-related problems together and remain unsatisfied if all of them are not solved their way. So instead of zeroing in on obesity, which is a caloric matter, they throw their distaste for “Big Food” company practices into the mix: processed foods; the use of GMOs (genetically modified organisms); Bisphenol A (BPA) in bottled water containers; and excess levels of salt, sugar, and fat. Activists’ lack of focus promises only to inflame their war against the industry and wreak havoc with more constructive interaction between the public health community and the food industry.


But the food industry has been voluntarily cutting calories by more than 400% of the goal they set for 2010-2012. That is a very surprising success rate. Especially one that is voluntarily set.

In May 2010, 16 of the nation's biggest food and beverage companies, from Coca-Cola Co to Kraft Foods Group, pledged to remove 1 trillion calories from the U.S. marketplace by 2012 and 1.5 trillion by 2015, compared with a 2007 baseline. In fact, as of 2012 they sold 6.4 trillion fewer calories, found an analysis by researchers at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (UNC).

"Reports like this, and the fact that they exceeded their commitment by four-fold, really shows that you can make progress in giving American families more healthy options," said Larry Soler, president of the Partnership for a Healthier America, a non-profit chaired by first lady Michelle Obama. The group was formed in 2010 to work with the private sector on anti-obesity strategies.


When politics gets into the anti-obesity crowd, like any other organization, I guess common sense goes out the window.

snoqueen
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Re: Anti-fat Attackers Undermine Their Cause

Postby snoqueen » Wed Feb 12, 2014 5:01 pm

Common sense has already gone out the window when people think the products of the Coca Cola company and Kraft have anything to do with providing nutrition to humans. There's a difference between manufactured products intended to induce eating behavior, and actual food.

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Re: Anti-fat Attackers Undermine Their Cause

Postby jonnygothispen » Wed Feb 12, 2014 5:10 pm

I see it as "pro-skinny" forces joining to together...

Francis Di Domizio
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Re: Anti-fat Attackers Undermine Their Cause

Postby Francis Di Domizio » Wed Feb 12, 2014 5:21 pm

Sandi wrote:
hyperactivists bundle a host of food-related problems together and remain unsatisfied if all of them are not solved their way


So pointing out that there are other food related health issues that need to be addressed is bad? Just because companies comply on one matter doesn't mean they shouldn't address other issues.

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Re: Anti-fat Attackers Undermine Their Cause

Postby Stebben84 » Wed Feb 12, 2014 5:44 pm

From the Forbes article:

Case in point: the Healthy Weight Commitment Foundation (HWCF)’s announcement a few weeks ago that its member food and beverage companies sold 6.4 trillion fewer calories in the U.S. in 2012 than in 2007.


There results were verified, but I did look up the HWCF.

http://www.healthyweightcommit.org/about/overview/

It’s a first-of-its kind coalition that brings together more than 250 retailers, food and beverage manufacturers, restaurants, sporting goods and insurance companies, trade associations and non-governmental organizations (NGOs), and professional sports organizations.


Ok, that sounds good. Here is one of two in the leadership role:

Indra Nooyi, Chair
Chairman & Chief Executive Officer
PepsiCo, Inc.

Let's have a looksy at their board.

http://www.healthyweightcommit.org/abou ... governors/

Every single one of them from the food industry. If this is truly the coalition mentioned above how come CEO's from every major brand are on the board and no one else from the "coalition" is represented. It's actually a bit creepy if you ask me. I don't trust them as far as I can throw them.

Sandi
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Re: Anti-fat Attackers Undermine Their Cause

Postby Sandi » Wed Feb 12, 2014 8:03 pm

Francis Di Domizio wrote:So pointing out that there are other food related health issues that need to be addressed is bad? Just because companies comply on one matter doesn't mean they shouldn't address other issues.


Excessively yes. It discourages food companies from coming to the bargaining table, thereby diminishing some their own goals.

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Re: Anti-fat Attackers Undermine Their Cause

Postby snoqueen » Wed Feb 12, 2014 8:51 pm

It's kind of amusing to think about this board getting together to come up with a public relations scheme.

Scene: committee meeting in well-appointed boardroom with nice city skyline views out the window.

The committee chair speaks first.

"It has come to our attention that the public is getting shit from their doctors because they're too fat, and they are starting to blame our junk food. We need to counter this message before it spreads."

Another member speaks up:

"But we don't want them to buy less junk food! It's what we sell. We can't be changing what works."

(heads shake, chorus of "no"s, consternation, then sounds of thinking)

Another member of the group:

"What if we just put a little less product in each package, and puff the rest up with more air? Air is free! We can charge the same per package and nobody will notice. They just want to stuff their faces."

(discussion ensues)

"But if they find out we're selling them less food for the same money, they aren't going to like it. We can't get away with that for long."

(more thinking noises, then exclamations)

"Sure we can! Look. We're doing them a favor. They're too fat, and we're selling them fewer calories! Woo hoo!"

"We're selling them air, and they're going to be paying the same they were paying for product! Brilliant!"

"Great for the bottom line, too, Vince! Good thinking!"

(general sounds of approval, then Vince continues)

"And we'll tell 'em we sold 'em fewer calories than last year!"

(more approval, then applause directed at Vince, who smiles and nods modestly)

Committee chair, triumphantly:

"Ladies and gentlemen, I believe we have a plan."
Last edited by snoqueen on Wed Feb 12, 2014 9:02 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Sandi
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Re: Anti-fat Attackers Undermine Their Cause

Postby Sandi » Wed Feb 12, 2014 9:01 pm

Snoqueen. It is obvious that either you didn't read the article, or if you did, you don't have a clue what you read.

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Re: Anti-fat Attackers Undermine Their Cause

Postby snoqueen » Wed Feb 12, 2014 9:03 pm

Ah, but I did read it.

And I'm pretty sure I got the drift.

From your second link:

It is not clear yet how the companies accomplished the dramatic calorie reduction....

Sandi
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Re: Anti-fat Attackers Undermine Their Cause

Postby Sandi » Wed Feb 12, 2014 9:38 pm

snoqueen wrote:Ah, but I did read it.

And I'm pretty sure I got the drift.

From your second link:

It is not clear yet how the companies accomplished the dramatic calorie reduction....


And how the calorie reduction was done matters because....

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Re: Anti-fat Attackers Undermine Their Cause

Postby snoqueen » Wed Feb 12, 2014 10:00 pm

Because some kinds of calorie reduction might be both more healthful and more economically sound for the consumer than others?

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Re: Anti-fat Attackers Undermine Their Cause

Postby Detritus » Wed Feb 12, 2014 10:08 pm

Sandi wrote:
snoqueen wrote:Ah, but I did read it.

And I'm pretty sure I got the drift.

From your second link:

It is not clear yet how the companies accomplished the dramatic calorie reduction....


And how the calorie reduction was done matters because....

Clearly you don't remember Olestra.


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