- Posted September 13, 2012 by
South Sioux City, Nebraska
BPI files lawsuit against ABC over "pink slime" defamation.
False and Disparaging Statements about Lean Finely Textured Beef Cause More Than 700
Americans to Lose Jobs, Three Facilities to Close and More Than $1 Billion in Claimed Damages
DAKOTA DUNES, SD (Sept. 13, 2012) – BPI Technology, Inc., Beef Products, Inc., and Freezing
Machines, Inc. (collectively, “BPI”) filed a suit against the American Broadcast Companies, Inc.
(ABC), ABC News, Inc., three ABC News reporters, and others for knowingly and intentionally
publishing false and disparaging statements regarding BPI and its product, lean finely textured
beef (LFTB). BPI alleges that ABC and others launched a concerted disinformation campaign
against the companies, which had a significant adverse affect on BPI’s reputation, as well as a
significant negative financial impact on the companies.
“For more than 30 years, our family has built and operated companies that are committed to
providing consumers with wholesome, safe and nutritious lean beef. We’ve created thousands
of good jobs for Americans and our lean finely textured beef has made the leaner ground beef
that consumers desire more affordable,” said Eldon Roth, founder and CEO of BPI. “The
blatantly false and disparaging statements made about our lean beef have done more than hurt
my family and our companies; they have jeopardized the future of our employees and their
In their complaint, filed Thursday in Circuit Court in Union County, South Dakota, BPI alleges
that ABC and the individuals named in the suit knowingly made false, defamatory and
disparaging statements regarding BPI and LFTB during a disinformation campaign this spring.
These statements were made even after BPI and others sent ABC factual information about
LFTB, including conclusions from USDA, FDA, food safety organizations and numerous beef
industry experts that LFTB is a safe, nutritious lean beef. As a result of the disinformation
campaign, BPI sales declined from approximately five million pounds of LFTB per week to less
than two million pounds per week, three BPI facilities closed and more than 700 employees lost
their jobs. “Through nearly 200 false, misleading and defamatory statements, repeated continuously
during a month‐long disinformation campaign, ABC and other individuals knowingly misled
consumers into believing that LFTB was not beef and not safe for public consumption, which is
completely false,” said Dan Webb, Chairman, Winston & Strawn LLP. “BPI has filed suit because
their business has been severely damaged by this conduct. As a result, we will be asking a jury
to award BPI more than $1 billion in compensatory and statutory damages, plus punitive
damages.” BPI seeks to recover damages for defamation, product and food disparagement, and
tortious interference with business relationships.
BPI continues their ongoing efforts to correct the disinformation published about its companies
and LFTB and to share factual information about LFTB. A copy of the complaint and facts about
LFTB are available at www.beefisbeef.com.
About BPI: Headquartered in Dakota Dunes, South Dakota, BPI is a family‐owned set of
companies that were founded beginning in 1976 by Eldon Roth and his wife, Regina. For more
than 30 years, BPI has provided consumers with safe, wholesome, and nutritious lean beef –
some of the leanest beef in the market. BPI’s lean beef has been a part of ground beef sold in
the United States since 1993.
Since their inception, BPI has been recognized as a meat industry leader for food safety
innovations and their commitment to making the highest‐quality lean beef. The International
Association for Food Protection honored BPI with its most prestigious award, the Black Pearl
Award, for BPI’s efforts in advancing food safety and quality through consumer programs,
employee relations, educational activities and adherence to standards. BPI was also recognized
with the National Cattlemen’s Foundation’s Beef Industry Vision Award, the National Meat
Association’s E. Floyd Forbes Award and the Food Quality Award