Last updated on: 5/9/2011 | Author: ProCon.org

US Department of Agriculture (USDA) Biography

Position:
NC to the question "Should People Become Vegetarian?"
Reasoning:

“In prospective studies of adults, compared to non-vegetarian eating patterns, vegetarian-style eating patterns have been associated with improved health outcomes—lower levels of obesity, a reduced risk of cardiovascular disease, and lower total mortality. Several clinical trials have documented that vegetarian eating patterns lower blood pressure.

On average, vegetarians consume a lower proportion of calories from fat (particularly saturated fatty acids); fewer overall calories; and more fiber, potassium, and vitamin C than do non-vegetarians. Vegetarians generally have a lower body mass index. These characteristics and other lifestyle factors associated with a vegetarian diet may contribute to the positive health outcomes that have been identified among vegetarians…

Although healthy eating patterns around the world are diverse, some common threads exist. They are abundant in vegetables and fruits. Many emphasize whole grains. They include moderate amounts and a variety of foods high in protein (seafood, beans and peas, nuts, seeds, soy products, meat, poultry, and eggs). They include only limited amounts of foods high in added sugars and may include more oils than solid fats. Most are low in full-fat milk and milk products.”

“Dietary Guidelines for Americans 2010,” cnpp.usda.gov, Jan. 31, 2011

Description:

“The Department of Agriculture (USDA) is a diverse and complex organization with programs that touch the lives of every American, every day. More than 100,000 employees deliver more than $96.5 billion in public services through USDA’s more than 300 programs worldwide, leveraging an extensive network of Federal, State, and local cooperators.

Founded by President Abraham Lincoln in 1862, when more than half of the Nation’s population lived and worked on farms, USDA’s role has evolved with the times. Today, USDA makes positive change in the lives of the American people by working to conserve America’s forests and private working lands; to ensure that America leads the world in sustainable crop production that will provide Americans with access to safe, nutritious and balanced meals; and to revitalize rural communities so that they can succeed in the 21st century economy.”

Email to ProCon.org, USDA Office of Communications, Aug. 17, 2009

Mission:

“We provide leadership on food, agriculture, natural resources, and related issues based on sound public policy, the best available science, and efficient management.”

“Mission Statement,” usda.gov (accessed May 9, 2011)

Other:
A cabinet level department of the US federal government
Quoted in:
Pro & Con Quotes: Should People Become Vegetarian?