Last week, it came to my attention, via Twitter, that I had indirectlyendorsed Kraft Singles as a healthy food choice for children. Yes, you know, the sliced rubbery “pasteurized prepared cheese product” individually wrapped for your convenience and used to make a shiny food blanket after a few seconds in the microwave.
The New York Times reported on Tuesday that the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (AND), formerly the American Dietetic Association, had licensed its Kids Eat Right seal to the Kraft Singles cheese product:
Getting permission to use the academy’s new Kids Eat Right label, derived from the logo for the Kids Eat Right nutrition education program run by the academy’s foundation arm, is a major coup for the Kraft Foods Group, the company behind Claussen pickles, Capri Sun juices, Breakstone’s dairy products and other staples of the American grocery store. The label is approved to appear on the packaging for the regular and 2 percent milk versions of Kraft Singles, which account for roughly 95 percent of the Singles brand.
The label is the first piece of what is to be a three-year collaboration between the academy and Kraft. Kari Ryan, director of nutrition, science and regulatory affairs at Kraft, noted that 80 percent of girls and 75 percent of boys ages 4 to 18 do not get enough calcium, while almost half of all children’s diets lack adequate vitamin D.