Is hormonally enhanced food necessarily bad food?
Marion Nestle is a consumer activist, nutritionist, and academic who specializes in the politics of food and dietary choice. Nestle received her BA, PhD, and MPH from the University of California, Berkeley. In 1988, Nestle was appointed Chair of New York University’s Steinhardt School of Nutrition, Food Studies, and Public Health. She held that position until 2004, when she became the Paulette Goddard Professor in the same department.
Nestle is the author of numerous books, including "Food Politics," which explored the way corporations influence our nutritional choices, and "What to Eat," an survey of how to navigate the modern American supermarket. Aside from her books and teaching, Nestle writes a popular blog for the Atlantic Food Channel.
Marion Nestle: Well the Food and Drug Administration says that adding bovine growth hormone to cows who are producing milk produces milk that’s identical to cows who haven’t been treated, and that’s why it’s not labeled. I think for a lot of people the idea that cows are being artificially treated in a way that will cause them to produce more milk is not particularly good for the cow. It’s not natural. It’s not what nature intended. They don’t like it. They’re worried about it. It’s very difficult to prove that a food, or a hormone, or an ingredient in a food is perfectly safe. That’s really difficult to prove. It’s also hard to prove that it’s harmful in any way that’s measurable. People eat very complicated diets. Milk is only one portion of the diet that people eat. But they would rather not have it. It’s hard to explain to a consumer why you need to have this hormone in the milk. It doesn’t seem necessary, and so why have it?
It's just not natural, says Nestle.
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- It might seem frivolous, but the cat-lovers commenting on Munt's GoFundMe page would likely disagree.
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