The New York Times reported on Sunday that recently released emails show how food companies, such as Monsanto and organic Stonyfield Farm, have enlisted academics to fight for them in the GMO food war that is currently raging. With the Senate due to vote this fall on a bill that would prevent states from labeling GMO products, the public relations value of an “impartial” opinion is significant.
From the NYT article: Corporations have poured money into universities to fund research for decades, but now, the debate over bioengineered foods has escalated into a billion-dollar food industry war. Companies like Monsanto are squaring off against major organic firms like Stonyfield Farm, the yogurt company, and both sides have aggressively recruited academic researchers, emails obtained through open records laws show.
The emails provide a rare view into the strategy and tactics of a lobbying campaign that has transformed ivory tower elites into powerful players. The use by both sides of third-party scientists, and their supposedly unbiased research, helps explain why the American public is often confused as it processes the conflicting information.