Rice Well-Represented at Dietary Guidelines Meeting

White woman with short brown hair, wearing a black and white striped shirt, stands in front of a microphone reading from a paper in her hand, large group seated behind her
Kathy Weimer delivers Grain Chain message to DGAC
Jul 17, 2019
WASHINGTON, DC -- Last week the 2020-2025 Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee (DGAC) held the second of five public meetings here with presentations by each of the DGAC subcommittees and public deliberation on presentations by the full DGAC.  This also was the first opportunity for the public to deliver oral comments to the committee.

The subcommittees that presented were Data Analysis and Food Pattern Modeling Cross-Cutting, Dietary Patterns, Frequency of Eating, Pregnancy and Lactation, Birth to 24 Months, Beverages and Added Sugars, and Dietary Fats and Seafood.  During the allotted time for public comments, more than 75 people testified, including the Grain Chain, a coalition of stakeholders in the grain industry of which USA Rice is a member.

“The Grain Chain endorses maintaining the 2015 DGA’s recommendation of carbohydrate intakes between 45-65 percent of calories and at a minimum, the recommended six servings daily of traditional grains with at least half as whole grains,” said Kathy Wiemer, MS, RD, who works at General Mills and is a Grain Chain spokesperson.  “Given that Americans continue to underconsume whole grains, we support an increase in daily recommended whole grain servings, while maintaining at least three servings of enriched grains.”  

Wiemer also highlighted key recommendations including the fact that both whole and enriched grains play a leading role in diet quality, and enrichment and fortification of grain foods have made lasting contributions to health.  She emphasized that grains are important to growth and development in infants and children, and that scientific evidence does not support a recommendation of low-carbohydrate dietary patterns to the U.S. population.

“We understand the role the Dietary Guidelines for Americans plays in shaping people’s diets and eating habits which makes USA Rice’s presence and voice vital during these advisory committee meetings,” said Cameron Jacobs, USA Rice manager of domestic promotion.  “USA Rice is in complete support of the Grain Chain testimony and we look forward to delivering our individual oral testimony on behalf of rice at the fourth DGA meeting next January.”

While this meeting primarily focused on the evaluation and systematic review of the science behind the recommendations, the majority of oral testimonies is scheduled to take place January 23-24 when the meeting moves to Houston, Texas.

"USA Rice will continue to be fully involved in the Dietary Guidelines process by attendance at the remaining three meetings, submitting our scientific research and comments, and providing oral testimony to ensure the U.S. rice industry message is included in the 2020-25 guidelines," said Jacobs.  “We commend the USDA for its commitment to public engagement.”

The next meeting of the Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee takes place here October 24-25.

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