As part of Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move initiative the first lady took her campaign to the aisles of Wal-Mart. Her message to the world’s largest retailer: to provide healthier food products with less sugar and salt, and to entirely remove trans-fats from their shelves over the next five years.
Michelle Obama in the news
In this latest televised You Tube news video Michelle Obama orates from the produce section of a Washington Wal-Mart and delivers her speech. She demands that Wal-Mart president Bill Simon pledge that within the next five years Wal-Mart will remove all products containing unhealthy trans-fats from their warehouse, stock their grocery shelves with products containing dramatically lower sugar and salt content and pump up their fresh produce section, all the while maintaining Wal-Mart’s competitively low pricing.
Attributing America’s childhood obesity crisis to the lack of selection of fresh produce in the more poverty-stricken states combined with the escalating costs of nutritious foods, the first lady hopes that this new Wal-Mart measure will encourage parents to make more health-conscious food choices when shopping for their families.
Let’s Move in the White House
Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move project is part of a national attempt to address childhood obesity, which has more than tripled in 30 years; approximately 1 out of 3 children between the ages of 6 and 19 in the US are obese.
Health risks associated with childhood obesity include:
- Heart disease
- Type 2 diabetes
- Sleep apnea
- Social discrimination
- High cholesterol
- High blood pressure
“In the end, as First Lady, this isn’t just a policy issue for me. This is a passion. This is my mission. I am determined to work with folks across this country to change the way a generation of kids thinks about food and nutrition.”
– First Lady Michelle Obama, on Childhood Obesity Task Force report
Wal-Mart CEO Bill Simon heartily accepted the first lady’s challenge, replying, “No family should have to choose between food that is healthier for them and food they can afford.”
Wal-Mart pledges not only to cut their prices on produce and eliminate high sugar and sodium; the retailer will also step up on their charitable support for various healthy food programs aimed at educating the public about health and fitness.