Washington, D.C. – Congressman Adrian Smith (R-NE) offered an amendment today to H.R. 5293, the Department of Defense Appropriations Act of 2017, to ensure meat remains a dietary option for U.S. troops by prohibiting the Department of Defense from excluding meat from its food service program manual. Both the amendment and H.R. 5293 passed the House.
The U.S. Coast Guard Academy has cut meat consumption among cadets by 10 percent over the last three years, drawing concern about an expansion of anti-meat efforts throughout the Armed Services.
Congressman Smith said:
“Ideologically-motivated activists are working to take meat off the menu in institutions across the country, and they have included the U.S. military on their list of targets. These restrictions would negatively impact the nutrition and morale of the men and women who protect our nation.
“Meat contains vitamins and nutrients not readily available in a plant-based diet. My amendment is not a mandate or a prohibition – it simply ensures there is a meat option available to our troops each day.
Colin Woodall, senior vice president of government affairs for the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association, said:
“Our military personnel should not be subject to radical political agendas like the ‘Meatless Monday’ campaign, which is not based on nutrition or sound science. U.S. military personnel have the right to eat what they want and what is best for their bodies in the execution of their jobs. This campaign is simply an anti-meat and anti-farmer policy agenda disguised as science, and we appreciate Rep. Smith for ensuring our military maintains the right to make the nutrition decisions that are best for them.”
John Weber, president of the National Pork Producers Council, said:
“NPPC applauds Congressman Smith for standing up to misguided attacks against U.S. livestock and poultry producers. Our military members deserve the right to consume high-quality protein, including meat, in their diet. No one should dictate what our military can and cannot eat. We applaud Congressman Smith for standing up to these misguided attacks.”