Dietitians drop corporate partners
After 20 years of having a Corporate Partnership Program the Dietitians Association of Australia (DAA) has decided, after consultation with its members, to conclude the program. Existing contractual arrangements will be honoured until Corporate Partnerships conclude on 31 December 2018.
While this may seem like a blow to public perception of food and beverage industry integrity, it isn’t. The food industry is currently not held in high regard by many consumers — sometimes justifiably and sometimes not.
Consumers are concerned about “chemicals” in their food, obesity, sugar content, salt content, trans fats, over packaging, unclear labelling, preservatives, additives, quality, nutrition claims, traceability and more. But riding on the coat tails of professional associations like the DAA will not resolve these genuine concerns.
It is up to the industry to fix up any dodgy practices, educate consumers about additives and the benefits of packaging, reformulate products in response to consumer and public health concerns and basically clean up its act.
Disassociating itself from its corporate partners will allow the DAA to strengthen its voice around issues, such as obesity, mental health, the National Disability Insurance Scheme and a new National Nutrition Policy, that impact the health of Australians.
By achieving their vision of being the “leading voice of nutrition and dietetics” the DAA’s members will feel empowered and strengthen their positive influence within their practice. The increase in the DAA’s credibility by becoming independent of industry will benefit those in the food and beverage industry whose products contribute to healthier lifestyles and better public health.
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