Washington, D.C. – Today, the Task Force on Hunger, Nutrition, and Health (Task Force) — an independent group of national leaders and experts convened by the Chicago Council on Global Affairs, Food Systems for the Future, the Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy at Tufts University, and World Central Kitchen — publicly released its comprehensive Report to inform the upcoming White House Conference on Hunger, Nutrition, and Health — the first conference of its kind held since 1969. On Wednesday, Aug. 31, the Task Force Co-Chairs will host a public webinar on the Report and its critical recommendations – register here.
The Task Force Report represents the most far-reaching, consensus-based recommendations from diverse perspectives on U.S. food and nutrition policy since the original White House Conference report in 1969. In addition to the Task Force itself — comprising leaders from academia, civil society, government, and the private sector — the report was informed by a review of more than 75 existing policy reports; a Strategy Group of approximately two dozen national organizations that provided a broader reflection of views and issues across America; discussions at three in-person national policy convenings held in different parts of the country that brought together more than 240 multi-sector leaders and stakeholders; and more than 15 listening sessions planned with communities around the nation to elevate and center the knowledge and perspectives of individuals with diverse lived experiences around hunger, poor nutrition, and diet-related diseases.
The Report has been shared with the White House and is now being publicly released. It contains 30 high-priority policy recommendations, undergirded by more than 200 specific actions for the federal agencies, Congress, and other stakeholders, to end hunger, advance nutrition, and reduce diet-related conditions in the United States. The Report also includes 12 recommended actions and commitments for the private sector to support these goals.
Advancing the bold, high-impact agenda outlined in the Report calls for political will and bipartisan solutions from the White House, Congress, specific federal agencies, state and local governments, non-government organizations, and the private sector. The Task Force members are banded together in their unwavering belief in the paramount importance of taking decisive action to achieve transformative change to end food insecurity and hunger, improve nutrition, and reduce diet-related diseases.
The Task Force believes that these efforts — while not formally requested nor endorsed by the White House — can help elevate the best ideas across the United States to catalyze historic, transformational solutions to some of the greatest challenges around food facing the nation.
The Report’s 30 recommendations span across six policy areas: Federal Nutrition Programs, Public Health and Nutrition Education, Health Care, Research and Science, Business and Innovation, and Federal Coordination. Each recommendation addresses at least two of the pillars that the White House has selected to outline the scope of the Conference — with many addressing three or four. These pillars include: Improve food access and affordability, integrate nutrition and health, empower all consumers to make and have access to healthy choices, and enhance nutrition and food security research. The Task Force’s efforts are supported by the Bia-Echo Foundation, the HAND Foundation, and World Central Kitchen; with additional support for the Convenings and Listening Sessions from The Rockefeller Foundation and the Yun Family Foundation.
The Task Force Co-chairs thank the Biden-Harris administration for leading this historic conference and for centering the need to end systemic hunger, nutrition, and health inequities. The Co-chairs also thank Reps. Jim McGovern (D-Mass.) and Jackie Walorski (R-Ind.) and Sens. Cory Booker (D-N.J.) and Mike Braun (R-Ind.) for highlighting these issues in their work and for their tireless advocacy for this Conference.
Tragically, Rep. Walorski and two members of her staff died in a car accident on Aug. 3. She was an incredible advocate in the fight for nutrition security and health equity. The Task Force Co-chairs extend their deepest condolences to her family, friends, staff, and the people of Indiana.
About the first White House Conference on Food, Nutrition, and Health: The 1969 Conference brought the nation together to address widespread hunger in America and was chaired and organized by Dr. Jean Mayer — a leading nutrition scientist, the tenth president of Tufts University, and the namesake of the Jean Mayer USDA Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging (HNRCA) at Tufts. The conference established much of the current U.S. food policy framework, including major expansion and harmonization of the National School Lunch Program and the Food Stamp Program (now SNAP), creation of the School Breakfast Program and the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC), and new consumer protections like nutrition labeling. These policies together greatly reduced caloric hunger and vitamin deficiencies in the U.S.