Academic journal article Human Ecology

Food CHOICES: Keating Leads Nutrition at Consumer Reports

Academic journal article Human Ecology

Food CHOICES: Keating Leads Nutrition at Consumer Reports

Article excerpt

Amy Keating '86 thought she was doing consumers a favor by compiling nutrition labels for a major food company.

In fact, she was keeping her employer in check with the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), right about the time she went to work at Kraft General Foods and the 1990 Nutrition Labeling and Education Act went into effect.

It took eight years in the prepared-foods industry to see the light. Now, Keating is a Program Leader and Nutritionist at Consumer Reports (CR), the independent, nonprofit organization with a mission to work "side by side with consumers to create a fairer, safer, and healthier world."

After Ithaca, Keating earned her registered dietitian credentials at Emory University. She served three years as clinical nutritionist at St. Luke's-Roosevelt Hospital, until a better-paying job came along. There was plenty of work at Kraft for a nutritionist who was good with numbers.

Twelve grams of fat per serving of macaroni and cheese, with 470 mg of sodium and zero dietary fiber. You can thank Amy Keating for that--the numbers, not the recipe--and in 1997, her diligence won a promotion to senior research scientist. Jell-O desserts were one of her specialties, but within a year, Keating was dissatisfied.

"I wanted my background in nutritional science to help people make better choices," she says now about her move to CR in 1998. "Mass marketing of packaged foods was not helping consumers make the best decisions for their health and well-being."

Now, with nearly 20 years of service at CR, Keating enjoys her role in what the organization does best: evidence-based product testing and ratings, rigorous research, public education, and "steadfast policy action on behalf of consumers' interests."

Like consumers' trending interest in Greek yogurt, for instance. …

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