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Grocery Manufacturers Association Statement by President and CEO Pamela G. Bailey Regarding First Lady Michelle Obama’s Childhood Obesity Initiative

~More than 40 food and beverage company leaders send letter to Mrs. Obama applauding the initiative~

"The food and beverage industry applauds First Lady Michelle Obama for her leadership on this critical health issue,” said Bailey. “Leadership from the Obama Administration as highlighted today by the First Lady will be extraordinarily helpful as we all work to solve this critical issue. Everyone has a role to play, including our industry. That is why in recent years, we have changed our packaging to promote portion control and we have reformulated more than 10,000 products to reduce or remove saturated fats, trans fats, calories, sugar and sodium. We are proud to have helped launch the Healthy Weight Commitment Foundation in (HWCF) - a $20 million initiative designed to help reduce obesity, particularly childhood obesity, by 2015 by promoting energy balance in the marketplace, the workplace and schools. We pledge to continue this effort to find innovative new ways to provide consumers with healthy choices and will work with the First Lady and other stakeholders, as we all work together to combat the challenge of childhood obesity."

Also today, GMA sent a letter signed by more than 40 food and beverage company leaders to the First Lady and is working with Reps. Ron Kind (D-WI) and Mary Bono Mack (R-CA) on comprehensive legislation to address obesity.

"To reduce obesity, we must provide parents and children with healthy choices, promote healthy eating habits, and provide new opportunities for physical activity,” continued Bailey. Government at all levels can do more to support healthy lifestyles."