June 1, 2009

WTD BPA Spokesmodel: Nice Cans, Pregnant A Plus, Some Travel Req.

Someone leaked the minutes of last Thursday's North American Metal Packaging Alliance BPA Joint Trade Association Meeting on Communications Strategy, or NAMPA BPA PR/BS HQ OMG WTF for short. It's like Treadstone for baby formula cans! Who is Jason Bourne??

Well, since he won't be a scientist, NAMPA hopes he's a mom:

The committee doubts obtaining a scientific spokesperson is attainable. Their "holy grail" spokesperson would be a "pregnant young mother who would be willing to speak around the country about the benefits of BPA."
In fact, except for a few points about the effects of BPA bans on "the union workers," and "on minorities (Hispanic and African American) and poor," the recurring theme was how NAMPA needs to transform itself into the North American Mom-Plastic Can Lining Love Association:
Attendees believe a balance of legislative and grassroots outreach (to young mothers ages 21-35 and students) is imperative to the stability of their industry; however, the association members continue to struggle to initiate research and develop a clear-cut plan to defend their industry.


Attendees suggested using fear tactics (e.g. "Do you want to have access to baby food anymore?")


The committee doubts social media outlets, such as Facebook or Twitter, will work for positive BPA outreach. The committee wants to focus on quality instead of quantity in disseminating messages (e.g. a young kid or pregnant mother providing a positive quote about BPA...


Members noted the industry needs research on how perceptions of BPA are translating into consumer behavior--Is it translating into most moms not buying canned products or just a minority of moms?


The members are focusing on more legislative battles and befriending people that are able to manipulate the legislative process. They believe a grassroots and legislative approach is favorable because the legislators worry about how the moms will react.

Frankly, I don't see what the big deal is. I mean what else should communications strategists and lobbyists for the canned food industry be talking about these days, if not a looming ban of a baby-toxic chemical used in almost everything they produce?

When you sit a bunch of white guys in sports jackets around a table at a private men's club--which, for most of its 130-year history wouldn't allow women to walk through the front door, much less join--you can't pretend to be surprised if all they do is talk about sweet cans on TV and how impossible it is to figure pregnant chicks out.

BPA gets attention from industry spinmeisters (leaked minutes) [scienceblogs.com via boingboing]
BPA industry seeks to polish image [jsonline.com]
NAMPA's motto: metal love is not a crime! [metal-pack.org]


Companies often hide behind blandly named trade associations like this one to mount public relations and lobbying campaigns opposing health and safety legislation like bills banning BPA from food product containers.

So if you're disgusted by these steps, and the idea of a campaign based upon "fear tactics" with a pregnant young mother as a BPA spokesperson, contact the member companies of the North American Metal Packaging Alliance: AkzoNobel, Alcoa, American Beverage Association, Ball Corporation, Can Corporation of America, Can Manufacturers Institute, The Coca-Cola Company, Crown Corporation, The Dow Chemical Company, H. J. Heinz, Hexion Specialty Chemicals, Inc., Huntsman LLC, INX International Ink Co., Novelis, PPG Industries, Inc., Silgan Containers Corporation, Valspar Packaging Americas and Watson Standard Company.

The meeting minutes also indicate that the following companies went to the trouble to attend this meeting: Coca-Cola, Alcoa, Crown, North American Metal Packaging Alliance, Inc., Grocery Manufacturers Association (GMA), American Chemistry Council, Del Monte.

wait, del monte was there? does this mean i can't have my canned mandarin orange segments anymore?

this part is true: "The committee doubts social media outlets, such as Facebook or Twitter, will work for positive BPA outreach."

but those same social media outlets might work for those of us who want this crap gone. Facebook it, dano!

p.s. - i did have a brief fantasy of getting pregnant again, just so that these ass-hats could hire me and i could publicly pull out some sort of hermaphrodite doll and start yelling that BPA did this to my baby. but that would be wrong.

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