Susan Neely, president and CEO of the American Beverage Association, recently spoke to Beverage Industry, about the importance of moderation and health policies that encourage education instead of demonizing certain foods or ingredients.

“USDA guidelines say that when water just won’t do, you should have a treat, have a soft drink in moderation,” she says. “That’s exactly what I think about as a mom and that’s what I say to my kids. That’s spot on.”

People do not like heavy-handed policies that tell them what they can and cannot drink - that’s why proposals to tax beverages have been rejected more than forty times. The way to bring about real and lasting change is to provide people with the information and options they need to make informed choices that best fit their lifestyle.

And that’s what America’s beverage companies are working to do. We are providing our customers with more choices, in smaller portion sizes with less sugar or no sugar at all to support their efforts to reduce calories and sugar from beverages. These are efforts that will make a lasting difference as we all work to help improve the health of individual and communities.