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Photo: Stocksy/Mosuno
Photo: Stocksy/Mosuno

Can you really trust what brands are telling you when it comes to how healthy their food is? Most people would say no. The sad truth is, what’s on the front of the label isn’t always accurate. It’s something almost everyone has seen firsthand, like when you’re grabbing a “healthy” nutrition bar only to check out the nutrition info and see that it’s loaded with sugar.

One food brand’s CEO has had enough with the deception and is making a bold move toward transparency. Using $25 million of his own money, KIND Healthy Snacks CEO Daniel Lubetzky is launching Feed The Truth, an independent organization that will serve as a non-profit watchdog, ensuring brands are being honest in their labeling.

“In establishing Feed the Truth, my intent is to elevate reputable science, bolster the voices of the nutrition community, and improve the guidance and information offered to Americans,” Lubetzky announced in a press release this morning.

“We’re eager for Feed the Truth to step in and hold all of us in the food community accountable for what we say and claim.”

Though Lubetzky founded the initiative, he wants to ensure it maintains its credibility, so he has removed himself completely from Feed The Truth’s activities and decision-making.

Instead, the board is filled with experts from the wellness world, like former White House staffer Deb Eschmeyer, who ran Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move! initiative; food activist Michael Jacobson, PhD, who founded the Center for Science in the Public Interest in 1971 and is credited with coining the terms “junk food” and “empty calories”; and nutritionist and Food Politics author Marion Nestle, PhD, MPH.

“We’re eager for Feed the Truth to step in and hold all of us in the food community accountable for what we say and claim,” Lubetzky says.

As you may recall, KIND had a run-in with the FDA over transparency: In 2015, the agency made the snack brand remove the word “healthy” from its labels, saying it was a false claim. KIND fought back, and won. (News flash, FDA: Fat isn’t bad.)  But the confrontation clearly had an impact on Lubetzky, and now, he is using what he learned during his fight with the feds to benefit the greater good. Talk about turning lemons into (low sugar) lemonade!

The FDA is also making some positive changes, including revamping food labels and getting real about how sugar affects the body. (Psst, if you’re looking to quit the sweet stuff, here’s how.)

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