The Importance of Veggies Early and Often

Through Veggies Early & Often, PHA is convening leaders in industry, health professionals and early childhood education to consolidate evidence and outline an action agenda with the goal to raise a generation of veggie lovers.

Most young children fail to meet recommendations for vegetable intake, a regrettable fact given evidence suggesting that the early years are a unique window of opportunity to cultivate healthy taste preferences and dietary patterns.

PHA designed this nutrition education campaign with a cross-sector group of a dozen inaugural partners to align on the evidence that supports why young eaters need vegetables early in life.

Together with our partners, PHA will:

  • Disseminate the science behind why “veggies early and often” matters.

  • Host conversations to discuss innovative approaches to increase and sustain consumption of vegetables among young children.

  • Showcase companies who adopt PHA’s “Veggies Early & Often" icon as a reliable indicator to parents and caregivers of veggie-forward products and approaches.

Only 10% of children consume the daily recommended amounts of vegetables.

Our Members

  • Shibani Baluja, Founder & CEO, lil’gourmets

  • Carolyn (O’Hare) Batyske, Co-founder and President/COO, Tiny Organics

  • Darlena Birch, MBA, RDN, Senior Public Health Nutritionist, National WIC Association

  • Jennifer Chow, Co-Founder, Nurture Life

  • Caree Cotwright, PhD, RDN, LD, Associate Professor, College of Family and Consumer Sciences, Department of Foods and Nutrition, University of Georgia

  • Erin Croom, MS, CEO and Co-founder, Small Bites Adventure Club

  • Carrie Dooyema, MPH, MSN, RN, Team Lead, Early Care and Education Team, Division of Nutrition, Physical Activity and Obesity, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)

  • Heidi DiEugenio, Founding Board Member, The Dr. Yum Project

  • Scott Drattell, Senior Brand Manager, Happy Family Organics

  • Kofi Essel, MD, MPH, FAAP, Community Pediatrician at Children’s National Hospital; Assistant Professor of Pediatrics, Director of GW Culinary Medicine Program, Clinical Public Health Summit on Obesity and Community/Urban Health Scholarly Concentration at The George Washington University School of Medicine and Health Sciences

  • Nimali Fernando, MD, MPH, Founder and Director, The Dr. Yum Project, Owner of Yum Pediatrics

  • Betsy Fore, Co-CEO & Co-Founder, Tiny Organics

  • Stephanie K. Goodwin, PhD, MPH, RD, Senior Manager, Government & Industry Affairs at Danone

  • Kendall Glynn MS, CGC, Co-Founder, COO, Square Baby

  • Diane Harris, PhD, MPH, CHES, Senior Health Scientist and Team Lead, Division of Nutrition, Physical Activity and Obesity, U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)

  • Jodi Kuhn, Director of Nutrition & Wellness, KinderCare Education

  • Lisa Mack, President & CEO, National CACFP Sponsors Association

  • Rupa Mahadevan, MD, FAAP, ABOIM, Assistant Professor of Medicine at LSU/Ochsner Health System Feist Weiller Cancer Center /Director of Culinary Medicine Integrative Medicine Physician

  • Lindsey Miller, MPH, Research Analyst, Healthy Eating Research, a National Program of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, Duke Global Health Institute, Duke University

  • Michael L. Orenstein, SVP Brand Innovation & Special Projects, Yumi

  • Donna A. Pomerson, Senior Director Operational Compliance, Learning Care Group

  • Jennie Shen, Director of Brand Marketing, Serenity Kids

  • Nicole Spain, MS, LDN, RDN, Registered Dietician Nutritionist, Learning Care Group

  • Alexia Thex, MEd, Director of Policy and Partnerships, National CACFP Sponsors Association

  • Katie Thomson, MS, RD, Co-Founder & CEO, Square Baby

Our Partners

  • KinderCare's logo

    KinderCare Learning Companies

  • Logo for Partnership for a Healthier America (PHA) partner Learning Care Group.

    Learning Care Group

  • Tiny Organics Logo

    Tiny Organics

  • Nurture Life Logo

    Nurture Life

  • Lil' Gourmets Logo


  • Good Feeding Logo

    Good Feeding

  • Square Baby logo

    Square Baby

  • Dr. Yum Project logo

    Dr. Yum Project

  • National WIC Association logo

    National WIC Association

  • Happy Family Organics logo

    Happy Family Organics

  • Yumi Logo


  • Logo for Serenity Kids, a Veggies Early & Often partner

    Serenity Kids

  • Small Bites, a PHA Veggies Early & Often partner

    Small Bites Adventure Club

  • National CACFP logo

    National CACFP Sponsors Association

Our Resources

  • Resource

    Yes, Kids CAN Learn to Love Veggies!

    A review of evidence to support why young eaters need veggies ‘early and often.’

    Updated Veggies Early & Often Icon for Paper Cover
  • Resource

    Patient Infographic for Medical Professionals (English & Spanish)

    A resource for medical professionals who are committed to working with families and caregivers to raise a generation of veggies lovers.

    An infographic for medical professionals who are committed to helping families and caregivers raise a generation of veggie lovers.
  • Resource

    Raising Adventurous Eaters with First Foods (English & Spanish)

    Patient education handouts that offer stage-by-stage guidance on nutrition and infant feeding during pregnancy and from 0-24 months of age.

    Cover of the 6-9 months first food handout
  • Resource

    Veggies Early & Often Resource List for Early Childhood Educators

    A resource for child care centers that provides easy steps to develop an organizational commitment to ‘veggies early & often’ during and outside of mealtime.

    A list of resources for ECE's