The U.S. Conference of Mayors recently wrapped up its 83rdAnnual Meeting in San Francisco, where ABA President and CEO Susan Neely spoke about the partnership between the beverage industry and the U.S. Conference of Mayors (USCM). A big part of this collaboration is aimed at supporting programs that educate children and families on the importance of balancing calories and staying active.

The beverage industry understands that nutrition education is an important step towards learning good lifelong habits on balance. That is why our industry is a proud supporter of the USCM's Childhood Obesity Prevention Program and the American Beverage Foundation for a Healthy America's state association matching grant program.

These programs support obesity prevention and raise awareness about the importance of leading a balanced lifestyle. Programs like this have a lasting impact on recipient communities and exemplify how we are truly an industry that supports the communities in which we live, work and play.

The winners of the 2015 Childhood Obesity Prevention Awards – Green Bay, Wisc.; Jacksonville, Fla.; Lima, Ohio; New Haven, Conn.; North Miami, Fla., and Seattle – have all created innovative programs to fight childhood obesity. The grants will help the mayors of these cities expand programs that, range from teaching teens how to cook healthy meals to creative promotions urging balance.

Our industry believes that public-private partnerships are key to addressing complex societal issues such as obesity. Congratulations to all the winners and all who are working together to create real and impactful solutions.

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