Public Comment Period Begins on Report of Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee

Public Meeting Slated for Sept. 21

The U.S. Departments of Health and Human Services (HHS) and Agriculture (USDA) today announced that public comments are now being accepted on the Report of the Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee on the Dietary Guidelines for Americans, 2005 to the Secretaries of Health and Human Services and Agriculture. Individuals and organizations are encouraged to provide written comments by Monday, Sept. 27, or provide oral comments at a public meeting on Sept. 21.

"We thank the committee members for their guidance, expertise and hard work to ensure their report reflects the most current and comprehensive nutritional science. This document provides a strong foundation for the 2005 Dietary Guidelines, which will be released by our Departments early next year. We encourage the public to submit comments that will help HHS and USDA translate these recommendations into meaningful policies and messages for Americans," HHS Secretary Tommy G. Thompson and Agriculture Secretary Ann M. Veneman said.

The 13 professionals on the current advisory committee have held five public meetings over the last year. The next step, after a 31-day comment period, will be an internal scientific review of the document. Later this fall, HHS and USDA will consider public comments as they translate the advisory committee's report into the 2005 Dietary Guidelines for Americans. Secretary Thompson and Secretary Veneman will release the 2005 Dietary Guidelines jointly early next year.

First published in 1980, the Dietary Guidelines are reviewed, updated and released by HHS and USDA every five years, and contain the latest nutritional and dietary guidance for the general public.

The report is available in the Aug. 27 edition of the Federal Register. An electronic copy of the advisory committee document is available at or in hard copy for viewing at Suite LL100, 1101 Wootton Parkway, Rockville, Md. 20852. Written comments can be submitted at or mailed to Kathryn McMurry, HHS Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, Office of Public Health and Science, Suite LL100, 1101 Wootton Parkway, Rockville, Md. 20852.

To provide oral comments at the public meeting, you must pre-register by calling 240-453-8280 before 5 p.m. on Sept. 14. The meeting will be held at HHS (200 Independence Ave., SW, Washington, D.C.) on Sept. 21, beginning at 9 a.m.

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