New York Farm Bureau today criticized billboards posted around the Albany area that knocks people for eating cheese.
The Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine, which has been labeled as an animal-rights group based in Washington D.C., has billboards up with photos of overweight people and the caption “Your Thighs on Cheese” and “Your Abs On Cheese.”
“PCRM has been denounced by the American Medical Association and the National Osteoporosis Organization among others,” said Dean Norton, president of New York Farm Bureau, in a statement. “Dr. Neal Barnard who heads up this group is in fact a psychiatrist, and not a dietician. Considering this fact, they ought to require PCRM to have a disclaimer on all of their ads, similar to ones that actors have to use when making television commercials for medicine — I’m not a dietitian but I pretend to be one on TV.”
The Farm Bureau defended cheese, saying it contributes 21 percent of the calcium, 9 percent of the vitamin A and 9 percent of the protein in the U.S. Food Supply.
“As a dairy farmer, I know how important cheese is to our economy and also how vital it is to a healthy balanced diet for our children,” Norton said.
On its website today, the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine announced the ads. The billboards are near I-787 in Albany.
Barnard wrote: “Typical cheeses are 70 percent fat. And the type of fat they hold is mainly saturated fat -— the kind that increases your risk of heart disease and diabetes. Cheese is also loaded with cholesterol and sodium. Americans eat more than 33 pounds of cheese per person per year —- three times more than they did in 1970 —- and our country is more obese than ever.”