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Remarks by AIT Public Affairs Section Chief Thomas Hodges at the Launch of the 2008 "5-a-Day" Program April 22, 2008

OT0804E | Date: 2008-04-22

Legislative Yuan Speaker Wang, Dr. Peng-Whang, distinguished guests and representatives from the media,

It is a pleasure for me to be here today to commemorate the launch of the 2008 "5-a-Day" program, which is the second year of a productive partnership between the United States and an increasingly strong and healthy population on Taiwan.

The "5-a-Day" partnership between the Agricultural Trade Office (ATO) and the Formosa Cancer Foundation is truly a win-win situation.  The Formosa Cancer Foundation, which celebrated its ten-year anniversary last year and received a national civic duty award, has been a guiding light in promoting healthy eating to Taiwanese of all ages, but especially to Taiwan's most vulnerable population - elementary school children.  A healthy daily diet that includes at least five full servings of fruit and vegetables is a widely recognized and easy-to-implement way to maintain health and prevent disease.

The Agricultural Trade Office and 13 of its agricultural producer associations - including the Washington Apple Commission, the lead association for this program - have joined together to not only support but to enhance the good work of the Formosa Cancer Foundation in promoting the "5-a-Day" message to elementary school children throughout Taiwan.

In 2008, the Agricultural Trade Office and its agricultural producer associations will provide funding to develop and print new, interactive nutrition education materials that will be distributed to over 50,000 schoolchildren and their families around Taiwan.  These materials are designed to encourage children to not only eat more nutritious meals themselves, but to encourage their entire family to eat the "5-a-Day" way for better health and longer, happier lives.  We are also supporting Formosa Cancer Foundation in training and sending nutritionists to reach schools all over Taiwan.

The Wellcome Supermarket Chain has also joined the program and will offer program participants generous discounts on their purchases of fresh fruits and vegetables.  United Airlines has offered two round-trip tickets to San Francisco as lucky draw grand prizes to reward those children who complete the "5-a-Day" interactive training program.

Again, it is a great pleasure to be here today with you and with such distinguished guests.  Thank you.  I look forward to great things happening with the ATO - Formosa Cancer Foundation "5-a-Day" Partnership!