The former president praised the National Restaurant Association's Kids LiveWell program as an example of effective cooperation. Launched by the NRA in collaboration with Healthy Dining last summer, Kids LiveWell helps restaurateurs identify and promote healthy kids' menu options. Since the program's launch the number of participating restaurants companies has more than quadrupled.
"Thank you for all that's being done through your initiatives to help our kids have a healthier future," President Clinton said. "What works is what [restaurateurs] are doing to feed kids and help them eat healthier. What works is cooperation."
He noted that the fight against childhood obesity is a top domestic priority for his Clinton Foundation. The foundation several years ago launched the Alliance for a Healthier Generation with the American Heart Association to tackle rising rates of childhood obesity.
"Childhood obesity is a 30-year problem with no single cause, no single solution and no villain," he said. He praised the voluntary collaborative efforts of soft drink manufacturers to reduce the calorie count of beverages in school vending machines and cafeterias, and work by foodservice manufacturers and distributors to increase the nutrition value of school lunches.