Federal Research Project Finds Fruit and Veggie Intake Too Low

November 22, 2010

A mere 8% of Americans consume an adequate level of fruit, according to the research.

The National Fruit and Vegetable Alliance (NFVA) has announced the results of a five-year research project which shows a lack of adequate fruit and vegetable intake in the United States.

NFVA released a report card last week based on its 2005 National Action Plan, a project intended to assess improvements in fruit and vegetable awareness among schools, restaurants, supermarkets, and federal and state governments.

Led by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (Atlanta) and the Produce for Better Health Foundation (Hockessin, DE), NFVA’s research indicates that recommended daily intake of fruits and vegetables is met by U.S. citizens at just 8% and 6%, respectively.

Grades were given in each business sector based on progress made in making fruits and vegetables available.

C grades went to school food and restaurant menus, which made slight progress with increasing availability of produce at cafeterias and fast-food restaurants. An F grade went to the health food advertising category due to a detectable decrease in health food advertising over the course of research.

“The data clearly indicates that resolving our public health crisis depends on the consistent success and efforts of the many stakeholders involved in America’s food choices and eating habits,” said Elizabeth Pivonka, PhD, RD, president and CEO of the Produce for Better Health Foundation.  “From both the private and public sectors, organizations across the spectrum have a vital role to play in making increased fruit and vegetable consumption a reality for all Americans.”