If you’re getting a tax payer, citizen whiplash from the contradictory sugar messages emanating from our governmentyou are not alone.
First, came a US Department of Agriculture (USDA) study warning that the average American eats over 150 pounds of sugar each year –
- More packaged and prepared meals
- More dining out
- Substituting sugar for fat in low fat products –
- proving literally there is no such thing as a free lunch!!!
Some at the National Institutes of Health have argued for Congressional controls on sugar –similar to tobacco – claiming that sugar is addictive and that is why our children are getting fatter, faster!!
In response, the USDA stepped in with new and expanded School Lunch Program nutrition requirements that ban forever more those notorious offenders– PTA Bake Sales!
- Requiring more cooking and less catering.
- Forcing schools to choose between building new classrooms and new kitchens.
- Forbidding schools to purchase locally grown produce because it might not conform to the nutritional requirements
- crafted by a bevy of Washington bureaucrats
- who have budgeted $6B for enforcement –
Then, Mayor Michael Bloomberg announced he would ask the New York City Council to approve a ban on all sugary sodas over 16 ounces.
- Under the Mayor’s plan you could still buy two 16 ounce sodas or get free refills –
- Inexplicably, my favorite – chocolate milk shake driven by an extra pump of corn syrup fortified fudge sauce, plopped into high saturated fat ice cream and blended with whole milk – was exempt from the 16 ounce limit.
- As was the similarly slimming Starbucks whip cream topped coffee beverage
- Sadly, members of the NY City Council spotted this inconsistency and dispatched it –
And, then just this week, Congress and the USDA , in a seeming contradiction, supported an amendment to the 2012 Agriculture Bill continuing farm supports to approximately 5,000 “domestic” sugar producers.
Dizzying isn’t it?
The $1.4B proposed sugar subsidy is inconsequential in the overall $500B 2012 Agriculture Bill.
But it underscores once, again, the need for an integrated agricultural strategy for the country – rather than knee jerk Nanny Statism –
- that won’t work
- and we can’t afford
unless Mary Poppins happens to be available!