A few months ago, we posted a link to Marion Nestle’s blog denouncing the potato lobby’s push to get their tuber approved as a part of the Special Supplemental Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) program. Her argument, by the way, is also the opinion of Institute of Medicine’s study showing that WIC eligible folks already get their daily recommended value of potatoes.
What’s the fuss? The potato, though a staple carbohydrate for many, is not that nutritious. As the WIC program is a “supplemental” nutrition program, it might not be the place for a staple carb to be subsidized. Well, it looks like some of that tricky debate may become moot. According to David Rogers, Politico correspondent, a letter written by the potato industry received bi-partisan support last week as it circulated the house and senate, eventually looking to find its way to Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack’s desk. The letter essentially asks for potatoes to be included in the WIC program. Problematic, right? We think so. Rogers writes:
If successful, the industry will gain what it sees as an important marketing tool. But critics charge that the end result will open the door to more special interests and violate a long-standing commitment by Congress to let independent scientists decide what foods are most needed.”
Well said. We’ll keep our eye on this issue and keep you posted.
Potato lobby eyes nutrition program gains via Politico