Businesses Partner to Build a Healthier Future


By Elly Spinweber, Director of Communications & Marketing, Partnership For a Healthier America

[Editor's Note: Partnership For a Healthier America is offering BCLC corporate network members a 10% discount to the "Building a Healthier Future Summit." Contact Hanna Felleke for details.]

When faced with the reality that nearly one in three American children are currently overweight or obese, most agree that we must all take action to fight this epidemic. Business has a critical role to play—one that it has been playing and that continues to evolve and expand. The nonpartisan nonprofit Partnership for a Healthier America (PHA) was created to work with the private sector to find the best ways to make the healthy choice the easy choice for busy parents and families.

(PHA) works with the private sector to find the best ways to make the healthy choice the easy choice for busy parents and families.

PHA helps businesses make meaningful commitments to the childhood obesity fight. While these commitments are helping move the needle towards ending childhood obesity within a generation, there is a great deal more to be done. In March 2013, PHA will convene leaders from the nonprofit, private and public sectors for its second Building a Healthier Future Summit in Washington, DC. This two-day event hosts leaders from across sectors, who come together to develop solutions to the most pressing issues standing in the way of improving the health of our nation’s youth. The Summit emphasizes focusing on the solutions, not the problems, and finding common ground instead of pointing fingers.    

The Summit also will provide businesses the opportunity to hear from current PHA partners about their experiences developing and meeting their commitments, as well as incorporating health-promoting practices into their business models. PHA partners understand the advantage of embracing and offering healthier choices, and their nimble, innovative approaches have proven that the private sector must be part of the solution to this crisis.  

PHA partners have started to build customer loyalty among their youngest consumers, communicating with them directly and showing them the fun side of nutrition. In July 2012, Birds Eye Vegetables teamed up with Nickelodeon series “iCarly” to launch the two-month “iCarly iCook with Birds Eye” Sweepstakes. This campaign not only helped Bird’s Eye make noticeable progress towards its commitment to PHA, but more important, it helped generate sales. Birds Eye’s creative marketing paid off for the company’s bottom line while also helping boost our nation’s heath. Check out the full story here.

Darden Restaurants is hard at work to disprove the myth that healthy often means bland and unsatisfying.

Darden Restaurants, another leading innovator and PHA partner, is hard at work to disprove the myth that healthy often means bland and unsatisfying. As the nation’s largest full-service restaurant company, Darden has noticed an increasing desire among its consumers for healthier and lighter meals when dining out. Its commitment to PHA realigns its kids’ menu to feature healthier options and steadily reduces calories and sodium adult meals over the next eight years. At Darden restaurants like Olive Garden, Red Lobster and LongHorn Steakhouse, parents will no longer have to worry about finding a healthy option that their child will enjoy, and those working hard to eat healthier will be able to choose from a wide range of options. Find out the specifics of Darden’s commitment here.

Birds Eye and Darden Restaurants are only two of PHA’s nearly 50 corporate partners working to make the healthy choice the easy choice for consumers. Each company has a unique opportunity to positively impact the health of children across the United States, and PHA’s Building a Healthier Future Summit in March will give the private sector further opportunity to inform and drive the strategies aimed at ending the childhood obesity epidemic. For more information about the upcoming Summit, to register or to exhibit, click here


RELATED: WellPoint and Boys & Girls Clubs of America win BCLC award for work on the youth obesity problem. Learn more.
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