May 23, 2001

Editor
The Dallas Morning News
P.O. Box 655237
Dallas, Texas  75265

Dear Editor:

As authors of the University of Connecticut study, “The Public Interest and Private Economic Power: A Case Study of the Northeast Dairy Compact” we find that your reporting on our work is biased and in violation of the most basic tenets of journalism–the requirements that one consider both sides of an issue and that one corroborate information from a second source.  Other newspapers that have reported on our study have been fair and scrupulous in their reporting.  Does The Dallas Morning News bend the standards for hometown corporations?  In an article on May 4, 2001 reporter, Dianne Soles, attributes Mr. Gregg Engles, the Chairman and CEO of Suiza, Foods, Inc. with the following statement about our study.

“Milk is political and this is political, and anyone who looks at this study will see that this guy came out of the soft social sciences and not the harder sciences of addition and subtraction,” Mr. Engles said.

Ms. Solis did not call us to determine the veracity of Mr. Engles’ attack on our professional integrity.  We challenge Mr. Engles to document explicitly where we have erred in adding and subtracting numbers in our study and to show how such mathematical errors, if indeed they exist, invalidate our economic analysis. We think your paper owes us an apology.  Absent explicit documentation of mathematical errors in addition and subtraction, Mr. Engles should also publish a formal retraction in your paper.  Your readers can access our study and related media stories, including yours, at our website:  http://www.are.uconn.edu/fmktc.html.  Let them judge for themselves the quality of our work and the quality of your reporting compared to other news media.

Sincerely,
 

Ronald W. Cotterill, Director
Food Marketing Policy Center

Andrew W. Franklin, Research Associate
Food Marketing Policy Center

cc: Greg Engles, Chairman and CEO, Suiza Foods
Senator Patrick Leahy
 Albert Foer, Executive Director, American Antitrust Institute
 Michael Stumo, Executive Director, Organization for Competitive Markets