Alliance rebuts pesticide shouts with whispers - The Packer

Alliance rebuts pesticide shouts with whispers

07/23/2010 09:52:51 AM
Amelia Freidline

A headline on the website Planet Green (which describes itself as an “eco-lifestyle television network” owned by Discovery) says “Pesticide Lobby Blames Organics for Americans Not Eating More Veggies.” The article never quotes the alliance directly, instead referring to the EWG for what the alliance said during the call.

Change.org’s story declares “Pesticide Lobby Launches Three-Year Campaign Against Organics,” before launching into a series of sarcastic conspiracy theories about the alliance.

And while Huffington Post, the self-proclaimed Internet newspaper, teasingly headlined its article “Hold the Mayo, Extra Pesticides,” the seemingly innocuous piece was written by none other than EWG senior policy and communications adviser Donald Carr.

How’s that for bias?

Of course, none of these groups makes an outright claim to being unbiased, but on the Internet, where reputations and common courtesy go to die, it’s more a game of who can shout the loudest and the longest than who is more logical or, heaven forbid, more accurate.

Perhaps the alliance will shout louder in future efforts.

It’s strange that multiple news outlets would slam the alliance as a “pesticide lobby,” but the alliance doesn’t do much to help itself on this charge: No list of member organizations is available on the group’s website.

Dolan said it is alliance policy not to publish the list. She called it not uncommon for non-profit groups to refrain from publishing member lists.

She stressed the point, however, that the alliance was not anti-organics, representing conventional and organic growers. And on one point she was perfectly clear.

“We absolutely do not have any funding at all from chemical and pesticide groups.”

The alliance is not a lobbying group, she said.

Fair enough, but if you don’t have anything to hide, give yourself some credit and don’t make it look like you do. Otherwise, this debate will go nowhere, and fast.

E-mail afreidline@thepacker.com

What's your take on the alliance's consumer education efforts? Leave a comment and tell us your opinion.


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