CENTENNIAL, Colo. – Count the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA) among the industry organizations that are pleased with the decision by the US Dept. of Agriculture (USDA) and US Dept. of Health and Human Services (USHHS) not to let the 2015 Dietary Guidelines for Americans (DGAs) be influenced by sustainability.

The guidelines are expected to be finalized in the next three months. Philip Ellis, president of NCBA, said cattle producers commend USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack and USHHS Secretary Sylvia Burwell on the open process in crafting the Dietary Guidelines for Americans and appreciate Congress’ continued oversight throughout the process.

“We were pleased the secretaries announced the guidelines will not include topics beyond the scope of nutrition and diet and also support their recognition of fruits and vegetables, low-fat dairy, whole grains, lean meats and other proteins as part of a healthy diet,” Ellis said in a statement.

Ellis noted that cattle farmers and ranchers have made significant investments in nutrition research to understand beef’s role in a healthy diet.

“Since the inception of the Dietary Guidelines in 1980, this research has been shared and it’s important for federal policies, like the 2015 Dietary Guidelines for Americans, to incorporate the latest nutrition evidence and recognize the role today’s lean beef plays in a healthy diet,” he said. “We recognize there is still work to be done as the recommendations are being finalized.”