In case you haven’t heard, this past week has been an exciting one for our industry.  On Tuesday, President Clinton announced a groundbreaking new partnership we formed with the Alliance for a Healthier Generation to reduce calories from beverages consumed in the American diet by 20 percent by 2025.   Over the next 10 years, The Coca-Cola Company, Dr Pepper Snapple Group and PepsiCo will leverage their marketing and distribution strengths to reduce beverage calories consumed while continuing to bring consumers the wide range of beverage options they know and love – and by sweetener, product and package innovation. Accomplishing this goal will not be easy, but we will transform the beverage landscape and help fight obesity.

Promoting calorie awareness and calorie balance has always been important to our industry and will continue to be at the center of our work.  Calorie counts and point-of-purchase messages also will help consumers make the choice that’s right for them, and with our National Calorie Awareness Program, we will be doing just that on the more than 3 million company-controlled vending machines, self-serve fountain equipment, and retail coolers in convenience stores, restaurants and other locations nationwide.  At a local level we will also be creating special community programs for areas that have lesser interest in and access to choices that can help consumers reduce calories.  These programs with start within Little Rock and Los Angeles.

As an industry, we are proud to continue to do our part in the fight against obesity, and just as proud to be continuing our partnership with The Alliance for a Healthier Generation.