GMA emphasize work of food and beverage industry on Food Day

WASHINGTON — The Grocery Manufacturers Association has highlighted the U.S. food and beverage industry's accomplishments on Food Day, which celebrates the more than 15 million Americans who work to provide billions of consumers with safe, healthy, convenient and affordable food.

GMA said that the U.S. food and beverage industry has made a commitment to making food more affordable. According to the GMA, Americans now spend less than 6% on at-home food — down from nearly 14% in 1961. Additionally, the industry also has put an emphasis on health and wellness and nutrition with the rollout of such initiatives as Facts Up Front, a front-of-package labeling system designed to help Americans better identify healthy foods.

"Obesity is a serious problem, and everyone — industry, government, parents, communities and healthcare providers — must do their part if we are going to meet first lady Michelle Obama's goal of solving childhood obesity within a generation," GMA president and CEO Pamela Bailey said. "To help consumers, we have changed our products, changed our marketing and have placed important nutrition information on the front of packages to help busy consumers make informed decisions when they shop."

What's more, GMA said, food manufacturers and retailers donate $1 billion to help feed the 49 million Americans who are food insecure.

"America's food and beverage companies are the foundation of our economy," Bailey said. "From farm to table, they support more than 15 million American jobs. They provide consumers with safe, healthy, convenient and affordable food. They help feed 300 million Americans and 6 billion people around the world. They donate billions of dollars to alleviate hunger. That is what Food Day is all about," she said.