The Center for Science in the Public Interest restarted the debate this week over processed meats and a potential link to cancer. Politico’s Morning Agriculture report says the group petitioned the USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service to require cancer warning labels on foods like bacon, ham, hot dogs, and other products. Back in 2015, the World Health Organization’s International Agency for Research on Cancer issued an opinion that eating processed meats raises the risk of cancer. The meat industry immediately responded to that statement, calling it “unsubstantiated.” Some lawmakers even called into the question the funding provided to the IARC by the National Institute of Health. The North American Meat Institute responded to the petition this week, calling it “alarmist” and “sensational.” In a strongly worded response, the organization pointed to studies that showed no correlation between eating meat and cancer. CSPI Executive Director Michael Jacobson isn’t optimistic about the group’s chances after filing the petition, saying “We recognize that the chances of the Trump administration taking advantage of the opportunity to protect public health is slim. At CSPI, we’re used to taking the long view.”
From the National Association of Farm Broadcasting news service.