Non-communicable diseases and the food and beverage industry

The International Food & Beverage Alliance (IFBA) includes ten global food and non-alcoholic beverage manufacturers (Coca-Cola Company, Ferrero, General Mills, Grupo Bimbo, Kellogg’s, Kraft Foods, Mars, Nestlé, PepsiCo, and Unilever). Although we cannont speak for the entire food and non-alcoholic beverage industry, not any other industry, our member companies support initiatives to address the global non-communicable disease (NCD) problem and commend the UN for bringing global attention to this issue, particularly in developing countries.

In 2008, IFBA made specificcommitments to WHO regarding product composition and availability; marketing and advertising to children; consumer nutrition information; the promotion of active, healthy lifestyles for individuals in communities and in the workplace; and collaborative public-private partnerships. We monitor our commitments and post progress reports on the IFBA website. It ecourages national and small and medium-sized food and non-alcoholic beverage suppliers and retailers to join us at country and regional levels.

2011, IFBA hosted a discussion with leading members of the UN and public health communities on the complexities and threat of NCDs for development and the benefits of a whole-of-society approach. As reflected in conclusions from that event, we believe strongly that our industry has much to contribute to the fight against NCDs and hope The Lancet would do more to encouragecollaborative actions that promote public health.

JV is past Co-Chair and AH and JC current Co-Chairs of the International Food & Beverage Alliance.