- The Center for Science in the Public Interest has asked the U.S. Department of Agriculture to mandate a warning label on packages of bacon, ham, hot dogs, and other processed meat and poultry products, according to a news release.
- The organization claims eating certain processed meats could lead to an increased risk of colorectal cancer.
- Reducing intake of processed meats could also lower consumers' risk of cardiovascular disease and diabetes, experts claim.
This isn't the first time a major organization has spoken out against processed meats. The World Health Organization said that processed meats cause cancer, as well as red meat in general, just last year. The meat industry, including processors and industry trade groups like the North American Meat Institute, pushed back against the WHO's claims, calling them a "dramatic and alarmist overreach," according to a statement from the organization.
Since the WHO made those claims, researchers have called into question the organization's data and research methods. In a journal article last month, industry experts called WHO's methods "outmoded hazard-based schemes" that lead to unnecessary health scares.
The question is whether industry experts will doubt CSPI's methods, if they are at all different from WHO's techniques. Yelling "cancer" is making a bold claim about an entire product segment and part of the food industry, so it's unlikely companies will remain quiet about these accusations, especially if they deem CSPI to be a respected organization that could potentially guide consumer sentiment.