Since 2007, 16 of the nations leading food and beverage companies have cut 6.4 trillion calories out of the American diet-equivalent to 78 daily calories per person. Thats the conclusion of a report by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, which worked with the companies to help combat childhood obesity. The firms had originally pledged to slash 1 trillion calories by 2010, and a foundation spokesman said he was encouraged by the progress beyond that goal: Now we hope that others see the success these companies have had and make the same commitment. Participating producers account for more than a third of all packaged food and beverage sales, by total calories.
It wasnt clear, however, how much of the calorie reduction was due to consumers simply buying less during the recession, rather than manufacturers reformulation of their products.