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This article is part of the Center for Media & Democracy's spotlight on front groups and corporate spin. is one of the many projects of Rick Berman's Center for Consumer Freedom, a front group for the restaurant, alcohol and tobacco industries. [1] argues that the safe level of mercury in fish is the EPA's Base Dose Lower Limit (BDLL) not the "reference dose." The reference dose is calculated on the lowest dosage of mercury that may cause nerve damage and is set at one-tenth of the BDLL to account for variables such as body size and allow a margin of safety.

Where groups campaigning for stricter limits, testing and advice on mercury in fish have set web-based calulators based on the reference dose,'s equivalent calculator is based on the BDLL.

The director of food policy at the nonprofit Consumers Union, Jean Halloran, told Village Voice that FishScam's campaign was irresponsible. "What Berman is essentially saying is that there's no need to have a margin of error. It's really extraordinary and extremely irresponsible. Many people have educated themselves about this issue, but I'm concerned that less-educated women who don't realize he is industry-funded will take his advice." [2]

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Contact Information

Fish Scam
Center for Consumer Freedom
1775 Pennsylvania Avenue NW Suite 1200
Washington, DC 20006

Phone: 202-463-7112
Website: [Fish Scam]

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