USDA begins hunt for agency to tout new food pyramid

WASHINGTON: The US Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Center for Policy and Promotion is looking for an agency to help launch its revised Food Guide Pyramid early next year.

WASHINGTON: The US Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Center for Policy and Promotion is looking for an agency to help launch its revised Food Guide Pyramid early next year.

The three-year campaign is budgeted at $1.6 million annually. Porter Novelli handled a similar campaign for the USDA in 1992, the last time the pyramid was revised.

The pyramid is a commonly used educational tool that recommends what foods should be eaten in what proportions each day. The latest revisions are expected to focus on obesity issues in the US.

The RFP calls for a mostly media-relations campaign to explain the pyramid to the public and educators. Schools and food and nutrition experts are listed as target audiences.

Whoever wins the business will have their work cut out for them. Earlier this month, the USDA came under fire for re-classifying french fries as a "fresh vegetable." And a bill in Congress would move the pyramid from the USDA to an independent agency.

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