Veggies Early & Often
2022 Progress Report
During the critical early years, kids need real vegetables, and parents and caregivers need the techniques to introduce them in a way that encourages healthy, adventurous eating for a lifetime.
Unfortunately, for too many kids, they may get little - or no - vegetables on a daily basis.
PHA’s Veggies Early & Often campaign is on a mission to change that. Serving as the backbone of a coalition of retailers, manufacturers, nonprofits and associations, we’ve built the foundation to support better health through better food and created the first veggie-forward criteria and product icon for baby and toddler food offerings.
Here are just a few ways that this coalition made an impact in 2022:
1. Market ResearchIn the fall of 2022, we surveyed a representative sample of adults with children 5 years old and under residing in their household, asking them about their shopping and eating habits, and how they selected healthier products for the children in their lives. Two key takeaways: parents want more choices to help raise adventurous eaters; and parents want it to be easier to identify those healthier choices.
2. Resources for Raising Adventurous Eaters with First FoodsWith pediatricians in mind, and working with the Dr. Yum Project and a multidisciplinary team of child experts, PHA created these free resources that provide proactive tips and practical activities to boost feeding development and build healthy habits at every stage of a child’s feeding journey.
Since 2020, PHA has been working collaboratively with a coalition of medical professionals, early childhood educators, food industry leaders and researchers to bring our shared vision of Veggies Early & Often to life across diverse sectors. This coalition includes leadership from Square Baby, Lil'Gourmets, Tiny Organics, Nurture Life, Small Bites Adventure Club, Happy Family Organics, Yumi, Serenity Kids, Learning Care Group, KinderCare Education, the Dr. Yum Project, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the National WIC Association, the National CACFP Association, and Healthy Eating Research, a National Program of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, as well as Caree Cotwright, PhD, RDN, LD, Kofi Essel, MD, MPH, FAAP, Nimali Fernando, MD, MPH, FAAP, and Rupa Mahadevan, MD, FAAP, ABOIM. Collectively, PHA’s Veggies Early & Often partners have added more than 200 veggie-forward products, menus and recipes to the marketplace and contributed valuable time, expertise and resources to develop a growing movement that prioritizes vegetable consumption among young children during their most formative years.
OUR VEGGIES EARLY & OFTEN PARTNERS
PHA is proud to partner with companies and early childhood education centers to introduce a new standard for vegetable offerings in the baby and toddler marketplace using PHA’s Veggies Early & Often guidelines.