PepsiCo Joins Healthy Weight Commitment Foundation to Help Reduce Obesity in the U.S.
WASHINGTON, Oct. 5 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ — PepsiCo, Inc. (NYSE: PEP), one of the world’s largest food and beverage companies, today announced that it will expand its existing efforts to help reduce obesity in the United States by joining the Healthy Weight Commitment Foundation (HWCF).
A first-of-its-kind endeavor, the HWCF involves the collaboration of more than 40 members of the food and beverage industry, retailers and diverse non-governmental organizations, with PepsiCo serving in a leadership role. The group aims to provide and promote solutions that will help people achieve a healthy weight by balancing the calories they consume with the calories they burn. The HWCF’s efforts will help provide people with the tools to achieve energy balance. These efforts will focus on three key areas: the marketplace, the workplace and schools.
“As an industry, we touch the lives of tens of millions of people every day. We are driven by the belief that by joining forces with partners across many sectors, we can make a far greater impact in the fight to reduce obesity than by working alone,” said Indra Nooyi, PepsiCo chairman and chief executive officer and HWCF vice chair.
“For our part, we are committing to enhancing our efforts to offer food and beverage choices that can contribute to healthy weight. To do that, we’ll offer more reduced-calorie and portion-controlled options,” said Nooyi. “At the same time we will do more to educate people, particularly children, about balancing the calories they consume with those that they burn.”
HWCF partners will deliver options in the Marketplace that help consumers manage their calorie intake through changes to products, packaging, labeling and marketing. The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation will fund an independent, objective, scientifically based evaluation of the marketplace initiative.
In Schools, the Healthy Schools Partnership will teach lifelong healthy habits, and in the Workplace, the HWCF partners will provide enhanced programs for employees to achieve and maintain a healthy weight. The schools initiative will be evaluated by the University of California at Berkeley Center for Weight and Health and the University of Kansas. Workplace programs will be overseen by the National Business Group on Health.
PepsiCo has already demonstrated success in the three focus areas:
Marketplace: PepsiCo offers consumers many low- and reduced-calorie food and beverage options. In 2009, PepsiCo launched SoBe Life Water, the first zero-calorie, naturally sweetened, vitamin-enhanced water made with PureVia, an all-natural sweetener made from the stevia plant. Additional reduced-calorie beverages include: Tropicana’s Trop50, which delivers the benefits of orange juice with 50 percent less sugar and calories; and G2, a low-calorie sports drink that delivers functional sports drink hydration. Since 2007, Frito-Lay has removed 59 billion calories from its 99 cent and $1.29 single serve bags, and the company offers many portion-controlled options, including 100-calorie packs, singles and multi-packs of several products. In 2006, Quaker Oats introduced 90-calorie packs of Quaker Chewy Granola Bars and Quaker Granola Bites. PepsiCo is also providing at least 10% daily value of one or more “shortfall” nutrients (calcium, potassium, fiber, magnesium, Vitamin A, Vitamin C or Vitamin E) in many of its offerings.
Schools: Since 2006, PepsiCo has been implementing the School Beverage and Competitive Foods Guidelines created by the Alliance for a Healthier Generation. As a result, healthier food and beverage choices have been available in schools across the nation. The snack guidelines include restrictions on calories, fat, saturated fat, trans fat, sugar and sodium. Under the beverage guidelines, full-calorie soft drinks have been removed from K-12 schools and only lower-calorie and smaller-portioned drinks are being offered. The guidelines are responsible for a 58% reduction in the number of beverage calories shipped to schools between 2004 and 2008.
Workplace: PepsiCo was recently recognized as one of the “2009 Best Employers for Healthy Lifestyles” by the National Business Group on Health for its successful HealthRoads program. PepsiCo’s workplace wellness program, known as HealthRoads, provides personalized coaching, fitness and nutrition programs as well as incentives and online tools to help employees and their families achieve wellness. Its primary focus is diet, exercise and nutrition, but it also assists employees with potential health risks such as stress, tobacco use, sleep deprivation, diabetes, asthma, high cholesterol and high blood pressure. HealthRoads is a catalyst for changing behaviors and the program fosters a culture of well-being that can contribute toward a sustainable business.
About the Healthy Weight Commitment Foundation
The Healthy Weight Commitment Foundation is a unique partnership between retailers, non-profit organizations, food and beverage manufacturers and trade associations aimed at helping to reduce obesity. For more information, go to www.healthyweightcommit.org.
PepsiCo offers the world’s largest portfolio of billion-dollar food and beverage brands, including 18 different product lines that each generate more than $1 billion in annual retail sales. Our main businesses – Frito-Lay, Quaker, Pepsi-Cola, Tropicana and Gatorade – also make hundreds of other nourishing, tasty foods and drinks that bring joy to our consumers in over 200 countries. With more than $43 billion in 2008 revenues, PepsiCo employs 198,000 people who are united by our unique commitment to sustainable growth, called Performance with Purpose. By dedicating ourselves to offering a broad array of choices for healthy, convenient and fun nourishment, reducing our environmental impact, and fostering a diverse and inclusive workplace culture, PepsiCo balances strong financial returns with giving back to our communities worldwide. For more information, please visit www.pepsico.com.
SOURCE PepsiCo, Inc.