The Partnership for a Healthier America (PHA), which has teamed with Honorary Chair First Lady Michelle Obama and the private sector with the goal of eliminating childhood obesity in a generation, has released its first report on the progress of private-sector commitments, including those of the grocery industry, to address the issue.
The report’s release coincided with PHA’s Building a Healthier Future Summit in Washington D.C., where public- and private-sector leaders gathered to discuss ways to end childhood obesity.
“Our partner organizations are making changes to their operations and their business practices that help make healthier choices easier for busy parents and families,” noted PHA CEO Lawrence A. Soler. “This report is about holding a mirror up to efforts against those commitments -- many of which are multiyear -- and giving the public a clear understanding of their progress.”
PHA requires its partners to agree to measureable outcomes verified by third parties and reported publicly by the nonprofit organization. As observed in the report, most of PHA’s partners have just embarked on their years-long journeys, while others are in in the midst of their odysseys and a few have completed their commitments.
Among the report’s findings:
- 141 new or renovated grocery stores or other retail locations have opened in or near food deserts.
- 507,293 underserved individuals have visited new or renovated grocery stores so far.
- 2.95 million kids got active in 2012.
- 8,100 new physical activity opportunities became available for children in 2012.
- 1,713 cities held physical activity promotion events in 2012
- $18 million has been spent in the past 18 months in funding for new retail channels and innovative food distribution programs.
“We know the private sector alone cannot solve this crisis -- it will take work from everyone, including communities, schools, nonprofits, governments, families and more,” added Soler. “PHA commends our partners for the remarkable goals they have set to help make it easier for kids and families to make the healthy choice.”