Pink-Slime Slinger Suing ABC News for Defamation
Beef Products Inc. claims the news station published 'false and misleading and defamatory' information about their product
While we thought the pink slime debacle was a story of the past, it looks like Beef Products, Inc. isn't going down without a fight. After closing three of its four plants this past year due to low demand, the "lean, finely-textured beef" maker is suing ABC News for $1.2 billion in damages.
Huffington Post reports that the South Dakota-based company is suing ABC News for defamation, claiming that the news company "engaged in a monthlong vicious, concerted disinformation campaign against BPI." The company acknowledges that this year's media storm sparked a "substantial" hit on their finances.
The reports, the company's lawyer said, painted the products as "some type of chemical product, that it's not beef. It led people to believe that it's some kind of repulsive, horrible, vile substance that got put into ground beef and hidden from consumers."
Jeffrey W. Schneider, ABC News' senior vice president, said the lawsuit is "without merit" in a statement. "We will contest it vigorously," he said.
BPI's lawsuit also names Gerald Zirnstein, the man who coined "pink slime," and other food scientists, as defendants, as well as Kit Foshee, a former BPI employee who spoke to ABC. We're surprised Jamie Oliver isn't on that list.