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General interest items edited by Janice Flahiff

[Reblog] (USDA) Pulled in Two Directions

From the 29 November 2012 post at BonAppeTERP :Terps talk about eating and living sustainably at UMD

November 29, 2012 by evabein

The USDA is charged with promoting the interests of U.S agriculture while simultaneously educating the public about proper eating habits. As American’s consume more meat than ever before and health concerns begin to surface about the advisability of this consumption, the two roles of the USDA have come into conflict. Advising more moderate meat consumption would not be in the interest of the meat industry, yet promoting it would not be in the interest of public health. Since these stakeholders often hold opposing views, the USDA can often only promote one of their interests at a time; and, pressure from either side can determine which interest is promoted.
For example, this summer, the USDA posted a statement on its website encouraging its employees to avoid meat on Meatless Monday  (a campaign to improve personal and environmental health). But after objections from the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association, it was removed from the website. Given the competing interests, how should we know when the USDA’s actions are benefiting us or when they are aimed to benefit another interest?


December 13, 2012 Posted by | Consumer Health, Nutrition | , , , | Leave a comment


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