1969 White House Conference on Food, Nutrition and Health
Pictured: Senator Bob Dole and Senator George McGovern, during a meeting of the Select Committee On Nutrition and Human Needs, a major catalyst of the 1969 White House Conference.
In early December 1969, President Richard M. Nixon convened the first and (at the time) only White House Conference on Food, Nutrition and Health to “put an end to hunger in America for all time” and improve the nutritional well-being of all Americans at a time when malnutrition was of urgent national concern. The agenda of the Conference was to draft recommendations that could be implemented by a bipartisan coalition into national nutrition policy.
Pictured: Dr. Jean Mayer presents President Nixon with the final report on the Conference.
President Nixon appointed Dr. Jean Mayer as Special Consultant to the President, and in that role, Dr. Mayer planned and led the Conference. Some 3,000 participants from diverse interest groups were organized into 20 working groups that met simultaneously over three days (December 2-4), and more than 5,000 attendees voted on the final recommendations. The final report, delivered to President Nixon by Dr. Jean Mayer on December 24, 1969, contained over 1,800 recommendations that spurred tremendous progress in federal food and nutrition policy.