House bill OKs white potatoes for WIC program - The Packer

House bill OKs white potatoes for WIC program

06/19/2012 05:35:00 PM
Tom Karst

Greenaway said according to the amendment, no appropriation bill funds could be used to exclude or restrict eligibility of fresh, whole or cut vegetables, except for those with added sugar, fats or oils, from being in WIC.

“It’s a tremendous overreach on the part of Congress,” he said.

In recommendations on the WIC produce vouchers in 2005, the Institutes of Medicine did not include white potatoes because they are the most widely consumed vegetable and participants already consume recommended amounts of them, Greenaway said.

“What the potato industry fails to recognize and what some in the House fail to recognize is that WIC is a supplemental nutrition program,” he said. “We are not offering a full market basket of foods; our job is to provide supplemental nutrition.”

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Joanie Betsinger    
Southern Minnesota  |  June, 28, 2012 at 10:53 AM

When our WIC clients were poled this last week concerning the addition of white potatoes, the most common reply was ," I want fresh fruits and vegetables that I can't get out of the garden or at the local farmer's market. I doubt I will be buying potatoes with that voucher."

August, 25, 2012 at 11:57 PM

This is exactly why Congress cannot be trusted with funds due to special interests this is taxpayer money, while it is silly of course to allow iceberg lettuce but not potatoes this is a specific nutrition program, for instance should white bread be allowed, white potatoes are full of carbs, a little bit it okay, wic also allows sugary fruit juices,

Southern WI  |  August, 26, 2012 at 08:57 AM

My brother is a widower raising an infant alone. The crazy instructional pamphlet he has for the scant amount of WIC food checks he receives reads like stereo instructions. For someone in mourning, trying to feed his daughter correctly, it is very time consuming and frustrating to get in line after carefully choosing items that he thinks are "ok" only to be told at the register he can't buy a bag of potatoes is really discouraging. Potatoes are inexpensive, children will usually eat them, and they are nutritional. From the looks of the brands of juice, cereals and canned goods that are approved, it hints of corporate intervention, in my opinion. I just added perfectly nutritional bags of frozen vegetable meals to his freezer that the baby will actually eat. It's hard enough for parents to get their kids to eat right, why make it even more difficult?

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