None of these accusations stand up to scrutiny. As with all their draft reports, the SACN published it in full on their website with an invitation to the scientific community to comment on the conclusions. We, meanwhile, drew attention to the report via our website. But the fact that it is a draft report, which still needs to go through a consultation process, means we are not yet in a position to give advice as a result of it. We need to see what the final report says, then give it careful consideration.
Any 'spin' on this story came not from us, but from the media. Both SACN and the FSA made it clear that the revised figures on energy did not mean people should increase their calorie intake. Yet this did not prevent irresponsible messages in the media (promulgated by The Grocer) prompting people to think about how they would eat an extra 400 calories. By appearing on the BBC, we tried to make it clear that our advice on maintaining a healthy body weight had not changed.
The FSA bases its decisions and advice on the best scientific evidence available. Sometimes the evidence is complicated and the implications require thought and debate, as in this case. We do not shy away from difficult reports like this we publish them, consult on them and review the responses. Then, and only then, do we decide on a course of action.
Dr Alison Tedstone, head of nutrition science, Food Standards Agency