The USDA’s grocery list - The Packer

The USDA’s grocery list

05/30/2014 10:25:00 AM
The Packer Editorial Board

The produce industry has found much of the Obama administration’s nutrition policy to its liking.

Along those lines comes the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s new “Healthy Eating on a Budget” tips at choosemyplate.gov.

Aimed particularly at takers of federal food aid, the tips provide some worthwhile guidance that any price-conscious shopper would be wise to employ, such as making a list and sticking to it.

Some of their suggestions do seem to contradict each other.

Among its “10 tips for affordable fruits and vegetables,” tip No. 5 advises “buy small amounts more often to ensure you can eat the foods without throwing any away,” while tip No. 6 urges buying fresh fruits and vegetables in bulk when they are on sale — and then presumably winding up throwing some of it away.

On the bright side, either way the tips emphasize making produce purchases a priority.

The list’s creators clearly made a point of suggesting a varied and healthful diet including foods from all the food groups, with options to fit a variety of tastes and culinary traditions.

A sample grocery list on the site includes more welcome news for fruit and vegetable marketers, mapping out a wide range of 16 fresh produce items — 8 pounds of white potatoes among them.

Another small criticism: For recommendations aimed at budget-conscious, low-income folks, they include some items — hummus and walnuts, for example — that while nutritious and delicious, aren’t typically the best bang for the buck for those aiming to stretch their food dollar.

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