One of the 750 employees of Beef Products Inc. who lost his job after the “pink slime” controversy is holding Diane Sawyer, Jamie Oliver and others responsible.
Bruce Smith claims ABC News anchor Diane Sawyer, chef Jamie Oliver and others who continuously used the phrase “pink slime” led viewers to believe the product made at BPI was dangerous to consumer and directly resulted in him losing his job.
Smith says an image the media associated with BPI’s product is not lean finely textured beef and is not a product found at a BPI factory.
The Los Angeles Times reports Smith is suing Sawyer, Oliver and food blogger Bettina Siegel among other defendants. Smith, a licensed attorney, is seeking $70,000 in damages. KSFY News reports Smith hopes other former BPI employees follow suit.
“My former employer was maliciously and needlessly maligned and accused of producing a food product that did not exist -- a product derisively, repeatedly, and relentlessly called 'pink slime' by traditional TV broadcast and print media, in concert with social internet media critics, bloggers, politicians, and celebrity entertainers,” Smith said in a statement.
Smith worked for BPI for more than four years before losing his job last May. He was the company’s senior counsel and director of environmental health and safety.
In addition to the lawsuit, Smith is promoting a book about his experiences titled, “Pink Slime Ate My Job.”