WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Jerry Moran (R-Kan.), Chairman of the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Agriculture, today praised the announcement this week by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) that they will reject portions of the advisory report that suggest the 2015 Dietary Guidelines for Americans should take into consideration environmental sustainability.
“I am pleased to learn the new set of Dietary Guidelines will be based strictly on sound nutritional science – not outside factors such as environmental sustainability. Due to my serious concerns about the guidelines being based on a field outside the committee members’ charter, background and expertise, I included instructions in the Senate Agriculture Appropriations bill directing USDA and HHS to formulate the new guidelines solely on dietary science. I appreciate the departments taking my concerns into account.”
The Dietary Guidelines for Americans, which form the basis of federal nutrition policy and influence many Americans’ eating patterns, are reviewed every five years.
Additionally, Sen. Moran will continue working to highlight the importance of lean red meat as part of a healthy diet. The same March 2015 advisory committee report that took environmental sustainability factors into account in its recommendations also left lean red meat out of what it considers to be a healthy diet. This greatly concerns dietitians who support consumption of lean red meat and is alarming to livestock producers.
Earlier this year, Sen. Moran joined 29 of his Senate colleagues in calling on USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack and HHS Secretary Sylvia Burwell to issue an extension of the comment period on the advisory report, which led to a 30-day extension. Additionally, the senators requested that USDA and HHS stay within statutory guidelines, consider the most relevant nutrition scientific literature, and reject the committee’s inconsistent conclusions and recommendations regarding the role of lean red meat in a healthy diet.
In multiple Senate Appropriations Committee hearings, Sen. Moran also voiced his concerns with portions of the advisory report directly to USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack and HHS Secretary Sylvia Burwell.