A number of industry experts say the Alar scare in 1989 was a major turning point for the public and the media.
"Their halos got tarnished in the Alar scare," says Means.
Bradley is the reporter who kicked off the Alar scare
back in 1989 with his completely unfounded claim that the pesticide was "the most potent cancer-causing agent in our food supply." In the August show, Bradley told viewers the chemical weapons expert for the battalion, former Sgt.
In fact, raising money seems to have been a major purpose of the great Alar scare
, which preceded the Valdez oil spill by about three weeks.
"After the Alar scare
of 1989, supermarkets plopped them onto the produce shelves chainwide, and that approach didn't take into account the right demographic profiles." The result was that many large supermarket chains were burned and backed away from stocking organic produce.
Refreshingly, she is also skeptical of the professional public crusader, and puts the interest groups behind the Alar scare
in their place.
Because saccharine was found to cause cancer in laboratory animals, I switched to natural snacks like apples, only to be terrorized by the Alar scare
. So I switched to organically grown fruits and vegetables.
"It's like the Alar scare
, blown out of proportion," says Ron Frost, spokesman for Fleming Cos., Oklahoma City, Okla.-based wholesaler.
"We made a lot of farmers rich after the Alar scare
. Supermarkets felt they had to carry these products and the farmers were able to get high prices for them," he says.
Take the Alar scare, launched three years ago by the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC), with a nice boost from 60 Minutes and actress Meryl Streep.
Now when you blame technology for making the sky fall you can get your mug on CNN's Larry King Live ABC's 20120 (which did its own cellular-phone scare), or CBS's 60 Minutes (which launched the Alar scare).
Apple juice, the other product lambasted in the Alar scare
also recovered to post a healthy sales gain.