Propaganda In The Food Industry

1393 Words 6 Pages
The unsweet truth is that in 1822, the average American consumed 45 grams of sugar every five days; we now consume this in just one can of soda. In 2012, Americans consumed 765 grams of sugar every five days, 17 times more than in 1822 (Nursing Your Sweet Tooth). Through lobbying and the use of propaganda, the food industry has been marketing junk food as health food, distorting facts, and deceiving the public as a means to increase sale and profits. At the same time, the obesity epidemic, diabetes, metabolic syndrome and cardiovascular disease are at their highest rates.The ways in which the corporate American food industry communicates information about health and products is highly unethical, leaving consumers misinformed and unaware about …show more content…
In 2002, the World Health Organization, or WHO, was in the process of releasing a document which emphasized the restriction of sugar, directly associating it with chronic metabolic diseases and obesity. The outraged sugar industry went straight to Washington and successfully won governmental support. The US administration stated that such a document was too hard on the industry. Tommy Thompson, Secretary of Health and Human Services at the time, went to the World Health Organization in Geneva and shamelessly told them if the document was published, the United States’ $406 million contribution would be withheld. Subsequently the sugar recommendation was deleted from the published document (Soechtig). The WHO still suggests lowering one’s daily amount of consumed sugar, just in a more polite manner. Participating in actions such as these shows the blatant disregard that the American food industry has for the health of consumers. The goal of food companies is to sell product, and in doing so nutrition is a factor not often taken under …show more content…
“Free sugars refer to monosaccharides (such as glucose, fructose) and disaccharides (such as sucrose or table sugar) added to food and drinks… and sugars naturally present in honey, syrups, fruit juices and fruit concentrates” (WHO). Despite this report, sugar lobbyists recommend 25 percent which is two and half times the scientific recommendation from the WHO. Because these two numbers are largely different from one another and because it is in the best interest of our government to protect the sugar industry, the nutritional label of every product is missing key information. Nutritional labels include the government’s recommended daily amount of various nutrients listed as a percentage, except for in the sugars field (Moss 22). This may seem strange and questionable but the answer is very simple. Processed food products and beverages contain so much sugar that if the consumer knew just one soda exceeds the recommended daily sugar intake, sales would significantly drop. Deterring from the amounts of sugar in products confirms that it must be something worth hiding, yet the issue is continuously swept aside. As these corporations can only push so far within the legislation, the propaganda comes into play to further aide in the manipulation of consumers about products and

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