If the American public is looking for balanced reporting on science
issues, they should consider skipping USA Today, which has
consistently chosen to represent selectively the science on potential
health risks from bisphenol A (BPA).
The latest distorted article, "Researchers Raise Concerns About BPA and
Breast Cancer" (October 8, 2013) focused on research from Tufts
University that purportedly showed mammary gland carcinogenic effects in
rats. What USA Today conveniently did not report was that serious
questions regarding the researchers' conclusions were raised by Forbes
contributor Trevor Butterworth. These questions were so significant, in
fact, that the scientific journal publishing the study forced the
researchers to revise their claims of links between BPA and cancer. An
explanation of this reversal was detailed by Butterworth
on September 26th, almost two weeks before the USA Today article
"Journals hat report on science, especially on issues that have a
direct impact on consumer behavior, should be held to the highest
professional standard," said Dr. John Rost, Chair of the North American
Metal Packaging Alliance. "Unfortunately, USA Today's reporting
on BPA is just as notable for what it leaves out as for what is actually
reported. What readers are left with is little more than statistical
spin cloaked behind the assumed integrity of the paper's masthead."
It is irresponsible for a widely cited national newspaper to confuse the
public rather than to educate. It is telling that USA Today's
reporting ignores the results of decades of research conducted by
scientists at regulatory bodies throughout the world demonstrating the
human body's ability to metabolize and eliminate effectively BPA from
the body. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has researched BPA
exhaustively and makes clear on their public-facing website that BPA is safe
in the levels of human exposure we come into contact with on a daily
basis from canned food and drinks.
Furthermore, the article essentially skips the vital role that BPA epoxy
resin lining in metal food packaging has in protecting public health.
According to FDA records, there has not been a food-borne illness from
the failure of a metal can in over 35 years. With the current news of
yet-another salmonella outbreak impacting the American public, why would USA
Today not include this type of relevant information?
"Perhaps it is time for USA Today to recognize its readers want
the full story and provide articles that appropriately consider all the
research on BPA, not just that which supports the advocacy agenda of one
organization," Rost added.
The North American Metal Packaging Alliance, Inc., and its members
support sound science and trust the scientific review process that has
protected our food supply for decades. For further information, visit www.metal-pack.org.
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