By Ethan A. Bergman, PhD, RDN, CD, FADA
President, Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics
For the second consecutive year, the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics had the honor today of co-hosting the Washington Post’s “Future of Food” forum in Washington, D.C. We co-hosted this inspiring and important event with the National Dairy Council and I had the pleasure of making opening remarks at the conference. Discussions ranged from technological innovations to make food more affordable and nutritious, to private-public partnerships that are leading the sustainable food movement in our country.
Achieving food security is vital to improving the health of our nation. It is the official position of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics that access to food is a basic and fundamental human right; the Academy and our 75,000 members in the U.S. and abroad are working diligently to help people be food-secure.
One in five children and one in 12 older adults are at risk for hunger in the U.S. That is why, every day, registered dietitian nutritionists and dietetic technicians, registered help individuals and families to make informed choices about accessing nourishing food and develop practical strategies to feed their families adequately.
A sustainable food system depends on the protection and conservation of soil, water, energy and the preservation of biodiversity. To underscore our commitment to this issue and to help achieve a system of food production that protects natural resources and the environment, the Academy recently published a practice paper to help dietetics practitioners to “meet the growing needs of those seeking guidance on food choices as they relate to ecological sustainability.” In this way, we can help consumers improve the environment – at their workplaces and in their personal lives – through sustainable food choices.
In short, we have the opportunity to shape the future of our food system and to guide Americans on accessible and sustainable choices. The nutrition and dietetics profession will will work tirelessly toward achieving ecological sustainability and social responsibility in food, nutrition and health.