Last week, The New York Times weighed in on food and climate change in a big way. They devoted an entire section of page one to Dr. Frank Mitloehner, the head of an agricultural research institute at the University of California, Davis. The headline? “He’s an Outspoken Defender of Meat. Industry Funds His Research, Files Show.”
The implication of the story was that Mitloehner takes meat industry money and expresses meat industry views. But The Times article admitted it didn’t actually find anything unclean about the money, so it felt more like a smear campaign to some. Or just a bad journalistic call.
But the article raised a bigger question for Mike and Tamar: How should we think about industry-funded research, particularly when so much research about the links between agriculture and climate is driven by private-sector support? They also ask how we should think about scientists who moonlight as advocates as well as how pseudo-scandals like the one in The New York Times affect the larger conversation around food and climate change.
The New York Times He’s an Outspoken Defender of Meat. Industry Funds His Research, Files Show.
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