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Dependent on the Food Industry

Money from the food industry may be tainting the information that is or, more often, isn't released by the US Department of Agriculture. The department, which relies heavily on money from the food industry, has a dual mission to promote American agricultural products like beef and milk and advise Americans on nutrition. Absent from a recent National Nutrition Summit in Washington was the subject of connections between obesity and advertising.

Money from the food industry may be tainting the information that is or, more often, isn't released by the US Department of Agriculture. The department, which relies heavily on money from the food industry, has a dual mission to promote American agricultural products like beef and milk and advise Americans on nutrition. Absent from a recent National Nutrition Summit in Washington was the subject of connections between obesity and advertising.

"It's about partnerships and funding," said nutrition professor Isobel Contento. In the last 30 years, she said, her profession has become "much more reluctant to say anything that will offend food advertisers."

"So many organizations need the funding," she added, "In subtle ways, it influences you in what you criticize and they way you criticize."

The article, entitled "Dependent on the Food Industry" appeared in the June 18th edition of The New York Times.

Published Tuesday, Sep. 18, 2001

Dependent on the Food Industry

Money from the food industry may be tainting the information that is or, more often, isn't released by the US Department of Agriculture. The department, which relies heavily on money from the food industry, has a dual mission to promote American agricultural products like beef and milk and advise Americans on nutrition. Absent from a recent National Nutrition Summit in Washington was the subject of connections between obesity and advertising.

"It's about partnerships and funding," said nutrition professor Isobel Contento. In the last 30 years, she said, her profession has become "much more reluctant to say anything that will offend food advertisers."

"So many organizations need the funding," she added, "In subtle ways, it influences you in what you criticize and they way you criticize."

The article, entitled "Dependent on the Food Industry" appeared in the June 18th edition of The New York Times.

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