Monosodium Glutamate - OAWHealth

Monosodium Glutamate

December 12th, 2012 by Loretta Lanphier, NP, CN, CH, HHP

Monosodium Glutamate

Produced under the banner of the University of Nebraska by one of the glutamate industry’s foremost spokespersons.

Designed and used to convince the public to use foods that contain processed free glutamic acid (MSG) and, apparently, to encourage food producers to mislabel products that contain processed free glutamic acid (MSG).

The Truth in Labeling Campaign has known of the work of the industry-sponsored International Food Information Council (IFIC) for a long time.  We have long known of Steve Taylor’s work as a spokesperson for The Glutamate Association and the International Glutamate Technical Committee. We have known of  Steve Taylor’s role in the Food Allergy & Anaphylaxis Network, which itself has strong ties to the glutamate industry.  But until very recently, we didn’t know about Steve Taylor’s Institute of Agriculture and Natural Resources, Food Allergy Research & Resource Program, at the University of Nebraska, which produced the Taylor/Hefle EXPERT OPINION: MONOSODIUM GLUTAMATE.

We invite you to read the Taylor/Hefle EXPERT OPINION: MONOSODIUM GLUTAMATE and then use your browser’s back arrow to return to this page for our commentary.

The Truth in Labeling Campaign’s comments on “Expert Opinion: Monosodium Glutamate:”

The “Expert Opinion: Monosodium Glutamate,” by Steve Taylor and Sue Hefle is a classic example of glutamate industry propaganda designed and used to convince the public to use foods that contain processed free glutamic acid (MSG) and, apparently, to encourage food producers to mislabel products that contain processed free glutamic acid (MSG).  It comes from Taylor’s Institute of Agriculture and Natural Resources, Food Allergy Research & Resource Program (FARRP) at the University of Nebraska.  According to FARRP’s Web site, FARRP’s purpose is to  “…help the food industry address one of its most daunting challenges.”  Membership is open to “food processors, food manufacturers, ingredient manufacturers, equipment manufacturers and other companies involved in the food processing industry.”

Steve Taylor has been speaking out on the “safety” of MSG for many years. In the early 1990s, he claimed to be “just passing through” San Francisco when he stopped in to a City/County hearing to testify to the “safety” of MSG. Jack Samuels testified to the toxic effects of MSG at that hearing.

A number of years ago, Taylor appeared with Samuels on a small market television program discussing MSG.  That was the only time Samuels heard him admit to being a spokesperson for the glutamate industry.  We have to chuckle when we remember how Taylor left the studio very quickly after the show, possibly because he had looked so bad on the show. In fact, the moderator asked him toward the end of the show if he wanted Samuels dead. Since that time, the glutamate industry has never again asked to debate Samuels, nor have they denied that Samuels is MSG sensitive.

To the best of our knowledge, neither Steve Taylor nor his associate, Sue Hefle, has ever conducted any research on MSG. They do, however, appear at meetings and produce papers, such as the Expert Opinion, to claim that MSG is safe. Interestingly, they are always introduced as being at the University of Nebraska in some capacity – never exposed as spokespersons for the International Glutamate Technical Committee or some other arm of the glutamate industry – which they are.

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