Dole Food Co. Ends Years of Funding Animal Experiments Through Mayo Clinic’s Nutrition Chair

After PETA Appeal, Company Requires Mayo Clinic to Redirect Funding to Researcher Who Doesn't Poison, Electrocute, Starve, and Kill Animals

For Immediate Release:
September 1, 2020

Contact:
Tasgola Bruner 202-483-7382

Charlotte, N.C. – A box of mouse-shaped vegan chocolates is on the way from PETA to the Dole Food Company, which has directed the Mayo Clinic to ensure that the Dole Food Company Chair of Nutrition—which Dole has funded since 1990—no longer supports animal experiments.

This directive followed an appeal from PETA pointing out that Dole’s former nutrition chair, K. Sreekumaran Nair, was using animals in deadly experiments. Dole executives were unaware of the animal studies. The company’s funds will now go to a researcher in the field of nutrition who uses exclusively animal-free, human-relevant research.

“Dole Food Company was quick to agree with PETA that tormenting, killing, and cutting up mice and rats does nothing but waste animal lives and research dollars,” says PETA Vice President Shalin Gala. “By requiring its nutrition chair at the Mayo Clinic to embrace superior, non-animal research methods, Dole can be certain that it’s funding the future of human nutrition science instead of cruel and worthless tests on animals.”

Experiments conducted by Nair and inadvertently funded by Dole involved injecting mice with chemicals to induce diabetes, force-feeding them to induce obesity, electrocuting mice and rats, forcing rats to swim with a weight tied to their tails, starving mice, bleeding mice and rats to death, and dissecting them.

More than 100 mice and rats were killed just for experiments published since 2016 that were not required by law and, because of the vast physiological differences between humans and other animals, produced data that was misleading, irreproducible, and inapplicable to human health.

PETA is leading the effort to end crude and lethal animal tests in the global food and beverage industry, having persuaded dozens of major companies—including PepsiCo, the Kellogg Company, and Barilla—to ban this horrific practice, which does not advance human nutrition science.

PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to experiment on”—opposes speciesism, which is a human-supremacist worldview. For more information, please visit PETA.org.

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 Ingrid E. Newkirk

“Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights?” READ MORE

— Ingrid E. Newkirk, PETA President and co-author of Animalkind