Food companies slashing calories by the trillion

In a voluntary effort to fight obesity, sixteen of the nation’s largest food companies including Coca-Cola and Kraft Foods have pledged to cut calories from their products by 2015.  The program, which began in 2012, has cut more than a trillion calories already, and are continuing to slash even more noticeable amounts in 2014.   This is certain to affect every American who buys food at the grocery store, and it is also sure to impact school lunches and cafeteria foods.

While this effort is certainly a noble one, many are arguing that it’s not up to food companies to make personal choices about food, and it’s not likely to make many differences.  Jillian Garza (11), commented, “I believe that they’re doing too much to cut calories and force kids to be healthier, when in reality kids are going to eat what the want. If the school lunch is so healthy that nobody wants to eat it, they’re going to go buy  pizza and fries.”  This opinion seems to be common, as Claudia Bland (10) also agrees. “If they serve food that doesn’t taste good, kids are just going to eat even more poor food choices.  If you tell a teenager that the food they’re about to eat is super good for them, they’re going to assume that it’s disgusting, and they’re going to go eat something else.”

Furthermore, some are arguing that this is nothing but a publicity stunt.  Anthony Biddle (11) said, “Cutting calories is one thing, and making an effort to get people to eat healthy is another.  If you cut calories on a product that nobody buys and continue selling out hugely unhealthy foods, it’s not making a difference. Ultimately, what someone eats and the way they treat their bodies is their own business.”

No matter what decisions specific Americans make, the effort to cut calories will continue in the hopes that the impact with make the country healthier.