Press Clips: Food is Having Some Trust Issues

Meagan McGinnes

The food industry is trying to overcome some trust issues that threaten to ruin its healthy relationships with consumers, competitors, and even their own staff.

This week’s Press Clips looks at issues of trust, or lack thereof, within the food industry, including lawsuits and consumers’ views on hot topic subjects.

NPR report finds Americans don’t care what scientists think about GMOS

NPR reports that Americans believe food scientists are more trustworthy than politicians, but still find their messages and beliefs to be just as confusing.

NPR looked at a recent Pew Research Center survey examining consumers’ attitudes “toward genetic modification, organic food and the importance of eating healthfully.” The survey found that 60 percent of the public thinks scientists should play a major role in government policies toward GMO foods.

When it comes to politicians, those surveyed feel less confident in their capabilities. Only 24 percent of Americans want their elected officials to have a major role in such policies.

Researchers also found that 39 percent of those surveyed believe genetically modified foods are worse for your health. However, when researchers asked respondents if they cared about the issue of GMOs, 46 percent said “not too much” or “not at all.”

Survey participants also lacked an understanding of how scientists view GMOs. Only 14 percent believed that “almost all” scientists agree GMO foods are safe to eat, even though, as NPR noted, this statement reflects the belief of the majority of scientists.

Reality TV star Dr. Oz sued for alleged not-so-real product claims

TV personality Dr. Mehmet Oz has found himself in a slippery situation.

According to Reuters, a trade group representing olive oil importers sued Oz under a largely untested Georgia food libel law. The New Jersey-based North American Olive Oil Association is objecting to claims Oz made on his daytime TV show that much of the imported extra virgin olive oil sold in U.S. supermarkets “isn’t the real deal” and “may even be fake.”

During a May 12 episode of “The Doctor Oz Show,” he also allegedly claimed that the Italian government seized 7,000 tons of “fraudulent olive oil” bound for the United States.

Reuters reported that the suit states that none of the seized oil was found to have come from non-olive sources. The North American Olive Oil Association also cited their own study from 2013-2015 which found that 95 percent imported oil met or exceeded quality and purity standards. Oz did not return Reuters request for comment.

Instacart Is Being Sued By Its Workers

Instacart workers are clashing with management yet again.

According to Buzzfeed News, Arns Law Firm has filed a new suit against the grocery delivery company. The company previously filed a class action suit against Instacart, which was thrown out last month.

Now, six new employees who worked as independent contractors for the company are claiming they were doing the same work as full time employees and, as a result, are they’re owed money in lieu of the minimum wage, overtime and benefits.

“The shoppers’ and drivers’ services are fully integrated into Instacart’s business, and without them, Instacart’s business would not exist,” the suit reads.“Instacart voluntarily and knowingly misclassified Plaintiffs and other Instacart shoppers as independent contractors for the purpose of avoiding the significant responsibilities associated with the employer/employee relationship.”

Reader Comments