Dairy Industry is Sustainable… Apparently
The National Dairy Council discusses the rising concern of how to eat sustainably. The meat of the article (excuse the pun) covers suggested criteria by which we can measure and judge the sustainability of food and eating patterns. Generally speaking, I did not have a problem with the factuality of the article. Rather it is the context surrounding the article and the way it dances around the main issue at hand, which is the environmental impacts of the dairy industry. I am not refuting the facts stated but rather I’m bringing light the bias present in this article.
Gregory Miller, PH.D., FACN
Taking a look at the author’s name and photo placed at the left side of the article, it says Gregory Miller, PH.D., FACN, this title demonstrates his academic merit but does not say much more about the author. It is not until you click his name that Gregory Miller is the Chief Science Officer at NDC, Executive Vice President of Research, Regulatory and Scientific Affairs for Dairy Management Inc. and Global Dairy Sector Lead for Nutritional Security for Global Dairy Platform. While his extensive resume is impressive, a more thorough look at the author reveals that there may be some bias present as he has a large stake in the dairy industry.
Filtering the Bull
A key element in critically viewing media as the author’s background, it may be a tell tale sign that there is bias present in the article. In addition, it is not until the concluding paragraph of the article that the author mentions how this relates to the dairy industry. The author states that dairy farmers are the “original environmentalists” because they use land and provide products to consumers in the “most sustainable way possible” and that the dairy industry has made huge improvements to their carbon footprint in the last 7 decades. My view on the issue is that the dairy industry has proven to have serious consequences on the environment: methane production, water usage, and land erosion, among other things the dairy industry is also known for inhumane treatment of cattle. The presence of this article on a website titled “DairyGood” is so obviously an attempt to avert people’s eyes from all the “DairyBad” being shown in other media outlets.