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Public Statements

Interagency Working Group (IWG) Guidelines

Floor Speech

Location: Washington, DC

* Mr. GOODLATTE. Mr. Speaker, I rise today to express my deep concern over the draft guidelines by the Interagency Working Group (IWG) on Food Marketed to Children. These guidelines would state that food must meet certain nutritional standards to be marketed to children. Quite frankly, these guidelines are so draconian that the advertising of nearly all foods to children and adolescents would be banned. This ban would include thousands of healthy products that could no longer be marketed to children, including most soups, cereals, yogurt, bread, and cheese--all foods determined beneficial for participants in the Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC). It is shocking that the Federal Government would be working to limit the advertising of foods like low fat and fat free dairy products which play a vital role in the diets of children and adolescents.

* While I have strong concerns about nutritional products that would be affected by the IWG's marketing guidelines, it is important to note how far reaching these guidelines are. The IWG defined marketing to include packaging, point of sale displays, text messages, sponsorships, philanthropic activity, and even the shape of food. These guidelines would limit the ability of companies to sponsor a sporting event or to partner in a charitable activity because it could be seen as marketing to children. Does the Federal Government really want to be telling a company that they can't be involved in their communities in these ways? This will be harmful to the communities while doing little to benefit children's nutritional health.

* The IWG guidelines are just another example of excessive government red tape. I urge the IWG to withdraw this proposal.

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