The corporate capture of the nutrition profession in the USA: the case of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics

Angela Carriedo, Ilana Pinsky, Eric Crosbie, Gary Ruskin, Melissa Mialon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Objective: The involvement of unhealthy commodity corporations in health policy and research has been identified as an important commercial determinant contributing to the rise of non-communicable diseases. In the USA, health professional associations have been subject to corporate influence. This study explores the interactions between corporations and the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (AND), and their implications for the profession in the USA and globally. Design: We conducted an inductive analysis of documents (2014-2020) obtained through freedom of information requests, to assess key AND actors' dealings with food, pharmaceutical and agribusiness corporations. We also triangulated this information with publicly available data. Setting: The USA. Participants: Not applicable. Results: The AND, AND Foundation (ANDF) and its key leaders have ongoing interactions with corporations. These include AND's leaders holding key positions in multinational food, pharmaceutical or agribusiness corporations, and AND accepting corporate financial contributions. We found the AND has invested funds in corporations such as Nestlé, PepsiCo and pharmaceutical companies, has discussed internal policies to fit industry needs and has had public positions favouring corporations. Conclusion: The documents reveal a symbiotic relationship between the AND, its Foundation and corporations. Corporations assist the AND and ANDF with financial contributions. AND acts as a pro-industry voice in some policy venues, and with public positions that clash with AND's mission to improve health globally.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3568-3582
Number of pages15
JournalPublic Health Nutrition
Volume25
Issue number12
Early online date24 Oct 2022
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 24 Dec 2022
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics
  • Corporate influence
  • Health policy
  • Nutrition profession

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Nutrition and Dietetics
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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