Corn Commentary

Conspiracy Theorists Justified

You can’t get the whole story unless you subscribe or work on Capitol Hill, but the Washington daily Roll Call has a story on the Grocery Manufacturers Association’s paid effort to smack down corn farmers in a bid to justify the high cost of processed foods at the grocery store.

Scott Faber, a former environmental activist who is now VP of Federal Affairs for GMA, was quoted thusly:

“We think that America has only heard one side of this debate for too long. The food industry is just adding its voice to the anti-poverty, environmental and consumer groups that have been ringing the alarm bells about diverting so much of our food to our fuel supplies.”

More from the story:

In its RFP, the GMA outlined a four-part approach: building “a global center-left coalition,” which includes environmental, hunger, food aid, poverty, development, senior, children, business, nutrition, farm consumer and labor groups; taking advantage of the “extraordinary earned media opportunities” caused by rising food prices; mobilizing local food banks and “other local opinion leaders in key states and districts”; and hiring “trusted third-party experts” to document the effect of fuel mandates on, among other things, global hunger and poverty, job losses in the food industry, and inflation.

In its 21-page answer, a copy of which was also obtained by Roll Call, Glover Park laid out a hard-hitting plan with two main goals for the campaign.

“First, we must obliterate whatever intellectual justification might still exist for corn-based ethanol among policy elites. … Second, we must demonstrate to policy makers at the state and federal level that there is a political price to allowing ethanol policy to drive up the cost of food,” Glover Park wrote.