By Robert Cohen Executive Director Text Only


Today is day #3 of National Dairy month.

We're told it's "news we can use."

U.S. News and World Reports (USN&WR) is helping the dairy
industry promote their product. After all, it's National
Dairy Month!

The 6/11/01 issue is due to appear on the newsstands on
Monday, June 4th, but they've prematurely posted this
article on their website:

Before reading their "facts," U.S. News gives readers the
bottom line:

"Don't sour on milk; the health benefit beats any risks..."

Why read any more?

A tiny breath of fresh air followed by an awful stench.
Reporter Linda Kulman writes:

"In the end, milk is not quite the miracle food the dairy
industry makes it out to be nor the toxic substance the
antidairy groups claim."

Rather than cite the "antidairy groups," this biased
reporter finds a way of interviewing those who work for
organizations financed by the National Fluid Milk

Kulman writes:

"'But it's the standard way our culture has gotten calcium
and nutrients over the years,' says Michael Jacobson,
executive director of the Center for Science in the Public

CSPI receives funding from the milk industry.

Kulman writes:

"Adds Bess Dawson-Hughes, chief of the calcium and bone
laboratory at the U.S. Department of Agriculture nutrition
center at Tufts University: 'There is no evil source of
calcium in the American diet. The problem is people are not
consuming enough calcium-rich foods.'"

Bess Dawson Hughes has a long history of working with the
dairy industry to promote milk.  When the national dairy
council convened their insider "calcium summit," Hughes was
a featured speaker.

Hughes is also a trustee of America's phoniest organization,
the National Osteoporosis Foundation (founded by dairy
industry insiders).

Kulman writes:

"Four years ago, the National Academy of Sciences upped its
calcium recommendations for people ages 9 to 18 from between
800 and 1,200 milligrams a day to 1,300 (an 8-ounce glass of
milk contains about 300 milligrams). Recommendations for
adults went from 800 milligrams to 1,000 milligrams a day
and to 1,200 milligrams for those ages 51 and up. Nine of 10
women and teenage girls, who are at a crucial stage in their
development, fail to meet the guidelines."

What poor investigative reporting.  If USN&WR had done their
job, they would have found that the National Academy of
Sciences committee consists of men and women who work for
the dairy industry. People like David Barbano and Michael
Daughaday. I've previously reported these conflicts of

Kulman writes:

"Other benefits. Besides being an inexpensive and appetizing
source of calcium, milk is dosed with vitamin D, which is
necessary for calcium absorption and protects against
rickets–a vitamin D deficiency that causes bone deformities
in children."

There goes that rickets lie again.  It's clear that USN&WR
has been talking to marketing people, not scientists. There
is no rickets epidemic in America, as dairy industry liars
would have you believe. Apparently, dairy has sold U.S. Moos
and Whirled Retorts on their myths.

The concluding paragraph of Linda Kulman's article reads
more like a dairy press release than an investigative
report. There will be no Pulitzer Prize awarded for this

Here's the opening line of the final paragraph:

"So keep drinking milk–the low-fat kind..."

Happy Dairy Month. Don't say I didn't warn you that this was

Oh yes...

USN&WR is owned by real estate and media mogul Mortimer

Zuckerman is a savvy businessman, and understands how
advertising revenue is generated. He recently sold Atlantic
Monthly and retains control over the New York Daily News and
Fast Company magazine.

Zuckerman enjoys the role of power broker. He writes
political editorials that appear in USN&WR. Mortimer is also
a member of the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR), a
powerful think tank that many feel determines policies for
NATO.  In that role, he also works closely with over a
hundred major companies and industries including corporate
giants such as Chase Manhattan, Exxon,  Shell, Newsweek, and
Time Warner.

Yesterday (June 2, 2001), the New York Times reported that
Mort Zuckerman fired Steven Smith, USN&WR's Editor. The
Times reported that Smith fell out of favor with the
magazine's owner in the past few months because of a decline
in advertising revenue.

The generous article is certain to attract future milk
mustache ads.

It should be no surprise that USN&WR barely nibbled the
pinky of the hand that will help to feed its enormous

Happy Dairy month!

Robert Cohen author of:   MILK A-Z
Executive Director (
Dairy Education Board

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