The Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI) is a consumer advocacy organization whose twin missions are to conduct innovative research and advocacy programs in health and nutrition, and to provide consumers with current, useful information about their health and well-being.
In general, CSPI's three main goals are:
To provide useful, objective information to the public and policymakers and to conduct research on food, alcohol, health, the environment, and other issues related to science and technology;
To represent the citizen's interests before regulatory, judicial and legislative bodies on food, alcohol, health, the environment, and other issues; and
To ensure that science and technology are used for the public good and to encourage scientists to engage in public-interest activities.
Some of the accomplishments the CSPI has attained for the health and safety of the public pertaining to the restaurant industry over the past 40 years have been:
1974 CSPI publishes Nutrition Scoreboard poster and distributes more than two million copies over the next 20 years. Nutrition Action Healthletter makes its debut.
1989 CSPI campaign spurs major hamburger chains to stop cooking french fries in beef fat.
1993 CSPI launches a series of landmark investigative reports (beginning with Chinese-restaurant food), revealing for the first time the nutritional value of restaurant foods.
2003 After a ten-year CSPI-led drive, the FDA finalizes a rule requiring food manufacturers to list artery-clogging Trans fats on Nutrition Facts labels. CSPI launches efforts in several states to require nutrition labeling on fast-food chain restaurant menu boards and menus. CSPI prods the FDA to test a wide range of brand-name foods for cancer-causing acrylamide.
2007 Helped pass menu labeling requirements in New York City and King County (Seattle), WA — and introduced similar legislation in many other cities, counties, and states. Convinced a number of restaurant chains and...