In this episode of “The Business of Blueberries,” host Kasey Cronquist, president of the U.S. Highbush Blueberry Council (USHBC) and the North American Blueberry Council (NABC), is joined by Mollie Van Lieu, vice president of nutrition and health at the International Fresh Produce Association (IFPA). Her work centers on increasing access and consumption of fruits and vegetables, and improving overall dietary quality through effective public policy. Van Lieu and Cronquist take a look at the current state of nutrition and health in the United States, and discuss the upcoming White House Conference on Hunger, Nutrition and Health.
“Our nutrition challenges have changed dramatically in the last 50 years, with more than three-quarters of the country overweight or obese. We applaud the White House for recognizing the importance and urgency of addressing dietary quality, especially as the consequences of nutritional insecurity are so far reaching. The fresh produce industry has long advocated for increased consumption of fresh fruits and vegetables, but success will require a bold and coordinated strategy and public-private partnership. We look forward to bringing the industry’s expertise and insights to this process as it moves forward.” – Mollie Van Lieu
“We would like to see a dedicated fruit and vegetable benefit in the SNAP program, the way you see in WIC. … We’d be happy to grow more product, but we need people to buy it and to eat it… Everybody knows fruits and vegetables are good for you, but kind of telling our overall story and really showcasing the need for some additional demand creation from the go.” – Mollie Van Lieu
Topics covered include:
- Van Lieu’s role with IFPA.
- An overview of current health and nutritional concerns in the U.S., and the topics and issues that will be covered at the White House Conference on Hunger, Nutrition and Health.
- The role producers and industry stakeholders can play in gaining support through government guidelines, and programs that drive demand creation.
The Blueberry Crop Report is an update on crop conditions and markets throughout important blueberry growing areas. In this episode, you’ll hear from Rex Schultz in Michigan, Juan Soria Morales in Mexico, Doug Krahmer in Oregon and Bryan Sakuma in Washington. This was recorded on July 27, 2022.
Discover the latest data on the blueberry market! USHBC/NABC Director of Business Intelligence Joe Vargas shares the most recent Nielson data on blueberry volumes. And for more category insights, visit the data and insights center on the USHBC website.