| Appetite for Profit Updates |
April 6, 2010
April, 2010- Vol 1, Issue 2
|Special Action Alert Issue |
For this update, I am asking you to support two important campaigns to fight the influence of Big Food. The first is to ask Ronald McDonald to retire (yes, it's about time), while the other is to get Yale School of Medicine to end its affiliation with PepsiCo. Make your voice heard.
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- Michele Simon
|Time to Retire Ronald McDonald |
| On March 31, Corporate Accountability International launched a brilliant campaign to ask McDonald's to retire its child-exploiting mascot, Ronald, who for almost 50 years has been getting kids hooked on fast food. I spoke at the press conference in San Francisco. You can read more about how to join the campaign at RetireRonald.org, and see poll results that show almost half of Americans agree that it's time to retire Ronald. You can also read my entire press statement here. |
|Yale / PepsiCo Deal Gets Bad PR in Wall Street Journal and Yale Daily News |
| A few weeks ago I wrote about how the soda and snack-food giant PepsiCo had bought a piece of the Yale School of Medicine (my alma mater, public health) by funding a "lab" and a fellowship program. A short while later, I was interviewed by the Yale Daily News. That article was then picked by an opinion writer with the Wall Street Journal. You can read parts of that piece here. I hadn't realized that my speaking out would cause such a stir. There's even a petition you can sign over at Change.org. While the deal is already inked, it's not too late to email medical school Dean Robert J. Alpern and tell him to end the joint venture, or else risk continued bad press and more disappointed alumni. |
| Do You Know Any Victims of Mixing Red Bull with Alcohol? |
| Red Bull energy drink is heavily marketed as a mixer for alcohol, with the result that people frequently drink Red Bull in cocktails mixed at home, restaurants and bars. However, Red Bull is not a safe mixer in alcoholic drinks. In fact, it is potentially fatal. Research shows that, compared to drinkers who consume alcohol alone, drinkers who mix energy drinks such as Red Bull with alcohol are twice as likely to require hospitalization, to drive drunk, to ride with a drunk driver, to assault someone sexually, or to be a victim of a sexual assault. |
The Center for Science in the Public Interest is investigating this problem, and they can use your help.
If you know of someone who suffered a negative experience because of Red Bull mixed with alcohol, they would appreciate your contacting Carol Walsh at CSPI. You can also ask the person to complete a short form on CSPI's website here. Your Information will be very helpful in determining the extent of the problems caused by mixing Red Bull with alcohol and in protecting other consumers.
| Upcoming Speaking Engagements in Boston and New York |
|If you are in the Boston area, come see me speak at the Consuming Kids Summit, hosted by the Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood. My talk on April 10 will be: "There is No Free Speech Right to Market to Kids: Corporate Myths and Policy Solutions." The event features many other great speakers and will honor Annie Leonard, producer of the fantastic documentary, The Story of Stuff. |
On April 15, I will be a guest speaker New York University in the course Food Policy, with Ellen Fried.
Michele Simon, JD, MPH
author, Appetite for Profit: How the Food Industry Undermines Our Health and How to Fight Back