OLD Media Moves

Covering food recalls

February 4, 2009

Dean Rotbart of NewsBios.com writes Wednesday that the media’s coverage of food recalls, including the latest peanut scare, in recent weeks has been perfunctory recitations of the Food and Drug Administration’s statements and actions.

Rotbart writes, “The Associated Press, collectively, has covered the peanut recall better than any other domestic news organization, using reporters in D.C. and in the afflicted communities to provide in-depth and broad coverage.

“The AP uncovered records in Texas, for example, showing that a local peanut-processing plant run by PCoA was operating without inspections and isn’t licensed, as required.  AP also reported that the U.S. Army was taking action to remove some peanut-butter items from its European warehouses.

“The AP’s reporting was so good that WSJ.com used it instead of its own staff reporters on at least three occasions in late January and early this month.

“The Wall Street Journal looked to Jane Zhang, who covers the FDA for the paper, Julie Jargon, who watches consumer products, and Jennifer Corbett Dooren who covers the agency for Dow Jones Newswires, to handle its self-generated coverage.”

Read more here.

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