By February 7, 2014 1 Comments Read More →

ABC News Is Being Sued for $1.2 Billion After Airing ‘Pink Slime’ Beef Footage


The “Pink Slime” manufacture Beef Products Inc. (BPI) is pressing on with their attempts to sue ABC News for exposing their product. The South Dakota-based “boneless-lean-beef” giant filed suit against ABC News for $1.2 billion after they aired reports and footage on “pink slime” that allegedly caused the company serious financial loss.

“Pink slime” is the common name of the controversial “lean finely textured beef” product that has been mocked by some as “Soylent Pink.” The product commonly contains cheap scraps, which many claim are essentially no different than those used in dog food. Ground up and mixed together with ammonia gas or citric acide to kill bacteria, the resulting product looks far from appetizing to most who see it being manufactured. Perhaps it is only natural then that BPI would want to keep such footage out of the public eye.

The case against ABC began back in 2012, but the media giant hoped to see it dismissed last year. But last December, against ABC’s opposition, and protests that this case was a threat to free speech, a federal judge remanded the case to South Dakota state court, rather than dismissing the defamation action.

The original report was run with Diane Sawyer and several correspondents informing the public of the use of fillers and trimmings in meat products. BPI alleges that this exposes had hundreds of “false and misleading and defamatory” statements about their “pink slime” products. The result was a huge backlash by consumer who feared that the product is unhealthy and unsafe. Demands for boycotts of “pink slime” were raised all over the United States.

Hamburger chef Jamie Oliver ran a special that focused on the byproduct and effectively proved that McDonald’s pink slime products were not fit for human consumption, thus forcing the hamburger giant to change their recipe. Instead of changing their approach to manufacturing the product, BPI said that they had no choice but to to close three plants and lay off 650 workers.

BPI is now claiming that ABC News, and specifically anchor Diane Sawyer and correspondents Jim Avila and David Kerley, all of whom delivered the story, somehow defamed and libeled its product, for which $1.2 billion in damages is being sought.

ABC News continues to challenge the suit, but they suffered a major set back with the December dismissal of their claims that the entire suit violated their rights of free speech. The Center for Science in the Public Interest, a public advocacy group, has now joined ABC, saying that the case should be dismissed on the grounds that ABC News was merely exercising its First Amendment rights.

(Article by Ari Simeon; image via PBSpot)

1 Comment on "ABC News Is Being Sued for $1.2 Billion After Airing ‘Pink Slime’ Beef Footage"

Trackback | Comments RSS Feed

  1. Momo7000 says:

    Sounds like BPI lost their biggest contract…the one with McD’s.

Post a Comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.