In today’s hyper-paced news cycle, it is very easy to miss certain news, and even easier to forget important developments that took place a few months ago (let alone several years ago).
When it comes to the food industry — and its councils and front groups — it is important to recall prior situations that showcased their tendency to mislead the public with their advertising efforts.
In 2007, The National Dairy Council (NDC; one of AND’s closest partners, based on the number of sessions and workshops they sponsor and host at AND’s annual conference) came under fire for a campaign that essentially presented dairy as a weight-loss food. True to form, the NDC relied on industry-funded science and experts to deliver this message (along with highly-recognized celebrities, which is possible when you have a budget like the NDC’s).
“The advertisements, conceived by the promotional arm of the dairy industry and overseen by the Agriculture Department, feature slogans like “Milk your diet. Lose weight!” and suggest that three servings of dairy products a day can help people be slim.
The effort includes a campaign called “Body by Milk” that is aimed at teenagers. It features Alex Rodriguez, the third baseman for the New York Yankees, and Carrie Underwood, an “American Idol” winner.”
This New York Times piece explains why the weight-loss claims were challenged, and how the NDC responded.