Today’s statement of concern comes from Carla S. Caccia, RD, LDN:
“I am not a member of AND, as I am so upset over their relationships with certain food manufacturers. These corporate sponsorships are unethical. Some of these food companies’ [PepsiCo, Coca-Cola, etc.] products contain questionable and/or harmful ingredients. The food companies are taking advantage of the “variety, moderation, and balance” theme to say that “all foods fit”. I used to think that, but now I’m not so sure.
There are some great informative handouts from AND. The Nutrition Care Manual is also a great resource, but some of the sample menus list brand names (i.e.: Quaker, Nature’s Own, Hot Pockets, etc.). I am not okay with that because:
1) It indicates that those brands paid their way into the menus (I don’t know if they did, but why else would those brands and not others be listed?) and
2) Those brands aren’t the healthiest and I wouldn’t necessarily recommend them to my clients. If I did provide these handouts, my clients might think those brands are somehow better or more nutritious because it came from me, an RD, and has the “AND stamp of approval”.
There are many well-informed and professional RDs. AND also does a lot of great work. However, it sends a message of corruption when we have relationships with food companies whose food products are incredibly unhealthy. That can put all RDs under a cloud of suspicions. How can consumers trust us when our professional organization partners with junk food companies?”