News Room

Science Insufficient to Support IARC Finding on Red Meat and Cancer

GMA Press Contact

Brian Kennedy

office: 202-639-5994

(WASHINGTON, D.C.) – The Grocery Manufacturers Association (GMA) issued the following statement in response to a finding by the World Health Organization’s International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) that classified processed meat as carcinogenic and red meat as probably carcinogenic.

“There is simply insufficient scientific evidence to support the IARC’s finding that links the consumption of processed or red meat to cancer.  Cancer is a complex disease and there are many factors that can contribute to its development, however there is broad consensus within the scientific community that no single food causes cancer.

“The findings by the IARC on meat and cancer must also be called into question given that the panel was directed not to consider any of the off-setting nutritional benefits meat provides and the panel also neglected to include in its review evidence from important research such as the Women’s Health Initiative and the Polyp Prevention Trial which does not support a causal link between meat consumption and cancer.”


Based in Washington, D.C., the Grocery Manufacturers Association is the voice of more than 300 leading food, beverage and consumer product companies that sustain and enhance the quality of life for hundreds of millions of people in the United States and around the globe. 

Founded in 1908, GMA is an active, vocal advocate for its member companies and a trusted source of information about the industry and the products consumers rely on and enjoy every day.  The association and its member companies are committed to meeting the needs of consumers through product innovation, responsible business practices and effective public policy solutions developed through a genuine partnership with policymakers and other stakeholders. 

In keeping with its founding principles, GMA helps its members produce safe products through a strong and ongoing commitment to scientific research, testing and evaluation and to providing consumers with the products, tools and information they need to achieve a healthy diet and an active lifestyle.  The food, beverage and consumer packaged goods industry in the United States generates sales of $2.1 trillion annually, employs 14 million workers and contributes $1 trillion in added value to the economy every year.