January 4, 2016
Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack
U.S. Department of Agriculture
1400 Independence Ave., S.W.
Washington, DC 20250
Dear Secretary Vilsack:
Like the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics is committed to food security for all Americans. We support the seminal report issued today by the National Commission on Hunger, "Freedom from Hunger: An Achievable Goal for the United States of America."
The Academy is ready and able to help in any way to implement the report's recommendations that can lead to decreased hunger. Many thousands of Academy members lead these programs in their communities — in WIC clinics; in schools that implement the Healthy, Hunger Free Kids Act; and in food banks, to name just a few. The goal of all these programs is, of course, to help Americans lead healthier and food-secure lives.
The Academy knows the importance of empowering Americans with the knowledge to make healthy, safe food choices through creative and engaging nutrition education. We were happy to see that using the Guide for Effective Nutrition Education and Intervention (GENIE) — a tool developed by the Academy to ensure high-quality nutrition education — was included in the commission's recommendations.
GENIE has been well-received by nutrition educators to help measure effectiveness and outcomes. The Academy offers our expertise to help implement this recommendation in any way needed.
Finally, the Academy would like to recognize our members who work at USDA, who provide expertise in nutrition to help USDA execute its commitment to "provide leadership on food, agriculture, natural resources, rural development, nutrition, and related issues based on public policy, the best available science, and effective management." We know they will play a crucial role as well in the implementation of the Commission on Hunger's recommendations.
Dr. Evelyn F. Crayton, RDN, LDN, FAND
Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics