Posted December 19, 2013
 
On Tuesday, attorneys for ABC and other defendants argued their motions to dismiss in the Beef Products Inc. (BPI) “pink slime” lawsuit, according to a Politico article available here.  For background on the case, a recent post from this blog is available here.
 
Kevin Baine, an attorney for ABC, said the network stated in each broadcast that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) deemed the product safe to eat.  Baine said, “ABC never hinted that this is unsafe” and “ABC never quoted critics saying it is unsafe.”
 
Eric Connolly, an attorney for BPI, argued that “those statements in a series of news reports were coupled with negative context calling the product filler or ‘not meat’ and implying that the FDA was not a credible source because the agency overruled scientists in approving the food product’s use.”
 
Baine argued that the use of the term “pink slime” in the reports is protected by the First Amendment, according to an article by KELO Land available here.  “Our defendants have as much right to use the epithet pink slime as the producer does the euphemism Lean Finely Textured Beef,” said Baine.
 
The judge will consider the arguments and issue a ruling at a later date. 

 

For more information on food law, please visit the National Agricultural Law Center hereand here.