Michele Simon

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Michele Simon

Michele Simon (born 1965) is a public health lawyer who has been researching and writing about food policy since 1996.


Appetite for Profit (2006)[edit]

Appetite for Profit: How the Food Industry Undermines Our Health and How to Fight Back, New York: Nation Books, 2006. ISBN 978-1-56025-932-9
  • Driven by this basic profit-above-all-else directive, corporations are mandated, in effect, to “grow or die,” a rule also called “the growth imperative.” Of course, a food maker is no different from any other corporation operating in a free economy. However, food companies face special challenges when it comes to obeying the market's growth imperative: because there's a limit—in theory, anyway—to the number of calories humans can consume, competition is especially fierce among food makers for the finite pool of money that consumers can spend.
    • p. 5
  • Industry's high powered lobbying effort is actually about much more than just passing bills. A convenient side effect of this lobbying crusade is to apply corporate spin to maximize effect. The rhetoric surrounding the lobbying shapes the broader debate related to who is to blame for obesity and diet-related health problems. Because lawsuits are such a hot-button issue, industry can take full advantage of the popular scapegoating of trial lawyers, while at the same time invoke all-American values and shove the personal responsibility theory down the nation's collective throat.
    • pp. 287-288

Whitewashed (2014)[edit]

Whitewashed: How Industry and Government Promote Dairy Junk Foods, Eat Drink Politics, June 2014. Full text online.
  • At a time when our nation is suffering from an epidemic of diet-related health problems, we cannot allow whitewashing by the dairy industry to continue. The assumption that eating dairy is essential to the diet has obstructed our ability to criticize federal government support for unhealthy forms of dairy. The large and powerful players in the dairy industry are the masters of spin. For decades, lobbyists and marketers have promoted milk as “nature’s perfect food.” But consumption patterns have shifted away from plain fluid milk to highly processed forms of dairy that are little more than vessels for salt, sugar, and fat.
  • The promotion of dairy products in schools is especially troubling, where children are a captive audience and greatly influenced by the foods served there. That’s why the dairy industry wants to maintain its strong presence in schools, despite local and federal efforts to improve the nutritional quality of school food.
  • Federal government administers, oversees, and approves almost every aspect of the dairy checkoff program. These funds are used to promote junk foods, which contribute to the very diseases our federal government is allegedly trying to prevent.

What the Health (2017)[edit]

Interview by Kip Andersen in the documentary-film What the Health, 2017.
  • What's really sad is that we cannot trust information from these leading health organizations like the American Heart Association and the American Diabetes Association because they are taking money from the very industries who are causing the problems that they are supposed to be helping to prevent.
  • Targeting young people, like the tobacco industry had to keep replacing their customers who were dying with new customers. Meat industry knows they have to target young people. That’s why we have these foods in schools and marketing messages at a younger and younger age for kids to get hooked on all the wrong kinds of foods.
  • The meat producers don’t have to pay for the heart disease or the environmental destruction or any of the other externalities, as economists call them, that their products cause.

External links[edit]

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