Space Cow

Weirdly Offending Everyone

Chipotle HealthyIn oddly twisted news from Washington, a lobbyist for restaurant, food, and tobacco interests is attacking Chipotle with offensive ads about obesity. In the process, the Center for Consumer Freedom (CCF) seems to be finding a way of weirdly offending everyone.

The CCF is an odd and secretive nonprofit organization led by Rick Berman, a Washington lawyer and lobbyist known as an advocate for the interests of fast food, tobacco, alcohol, and meat industries. One of CCF’s initiatives that gained notoriety was a campaign to question government statistics about the health impact of obesity, suggesting that the problem had been exaggerated by “nanny-state” bureaucrats.

Now CCF is attacking a successful fast food company — Chipotle — for causing obesity. And they are using offensive ads mocking people with obesity to do it. You can’t make this stuff up.

Asked about the source of funding for this campaign, a CCF spokesperson denied that any specific company was funding this work. “It’s just a project of ours,” said Will Coggin. The website CCF has created for this campaign disparages Chipotle’s commitment to sustainability, antibiotic-free meat, and GMO-free food. They call it “food with hypocrisy,” mocking Chipotle’s tagline of “food with integrity.”

Health advocates, including ConscienHealth, have long noted that the high caloric load of an average meal at Chipotle is an issue that stands in contrast to the company’s commitment to sustainable food production. Throw a restaurant lobbyist into the mix, attacking a successful restaurant chain, and the whole scene gets more than a little weird.

Chipotle dismissed the campaign as “infantile.”

Click here to read more from the Washington Post and here to read more from Reuters.

Space Cow, photograph © Mark Roy / flickr

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September 4, 2015

2 Responses to “Weirdly Offending Everyone”

  1. September 07, 2015 at 6:29 pm, Joanne Ikeda said:

    Actually, if all this person ate was 2 burritos every week for a year, he would die of starvation before the year was up!

    • September 07, 2015 at 6:38 pm, Ted said:

      Thanks, Joanne. That’s yet another way that this ad is simply and weirdly dumb.