Juice Products Association (JPA) members were concerned that media buzz about sugary beverages could negatively influence a forthcoming update to the USDA Dietary Guidelines for Americans (DGA), and nutrition recommendations offered by the influential American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP). The USDA Dietary Guidelines for Americans serve as a roadmap for upcoming federal food policy and for public feeding programs such as the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC), the Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP) and Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP).
Under the direction of a Kellen staff registered dietician (RD) communications specialist, we assembled and managed a JPA Nutrition Committee comprised of nutrition science experts at leading member companies. We launched a focused two-year initiative to identify gaps in nutrition research, define projects to address those gaps and conduct outreach to key opinion leaders who influence public policy. The project encompassed five new research/data analyses that were published and submitted to the USDA Evidence Library. These research outcomes were presented through written and oral comments to the Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee; through individual meetings to influencers such as the chair of the AAP’s Committee on Nutrition; to department heads at Harvard School of Public Health, Tufts University, and other esteemed institutions.
- The 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans report retained juice as a primary nutrient-dense beverage and as an option for meeting the daily values of fruit consumption.
- The American Academy of Pediatrics revised policy statement on juice reassures parents what they may provide age appropriate services of juice to children in addition to whole fruits.
- A 2015 AAP report, “The Role of the Pediatrician in Primary Prevention of Obesity” retained juice as an option for meeting daily values of fruit consumption.