The American Public Health Association (APHA) is a 150-year-old organization open to "any persons interested in public health", if they are willing to fork over $225.

One thing is certain; the organic industry and its client base has money to burn, so it is little surprise that the APHA is hosting a panel by Big Organic's favorite economist, Chuck Benbrook, PhD. Benbrook is executive director of the shadowy(1) action group calling itself the Heartland Health Research Alliance after having been rousted from Washington State University, where he claimed to be a professor. 

Shilling for Big Organic is good business for him. According to his statement as an "expert" witness in a trial hoping to convince a jury that a weedkiller magically works on human biology, he paid himself $326,324 in two years and his daughter $200,000, and said his non-profit earned $3.7 million, including from attorneys suing over products he criticizes.
And yet charity rating agencies know nothing about his company

Literally, it may as well not exist, And yet he claims $4 million from "foundations" he refuses to disclose. 

If Center for Media and Democracy and its Sourcewatch group were not simply fronts for the Democratic party, they'd launch a Dark Money investigation into his organization, but instead they support him - perhaps because they share the same corporate and litigation funders? Certainly because the political party they endorse are overwhelmingly represented in the anti-science-corporate-conspiracy movement.

Perhaps that applies to APHA also, because there is no scientific reason for this panel. And no scientists on it. Instead they have conspiracy theorist Dr. Phil Landrigan and Daniele Mandrioli of the Ramazzini Institute, "an advocacy forum for their pro-compensation and aggressive regulation views on social and political issues" according to legal watchdogs. Landrigan was their president until last year.

An economist, anti-farming epidemiologists funded by the American version of Ramazzini, the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, and a pediatrician telling an audience they know more about chemistry, biology, and toxicology than scientists makes as much sense as me dancing about architecture for them. All I have to do is a two-step while singing "cohort" and it has a kind of truthiness veneer of science.

But one thing does make sense: Benbrook sends money to Ramazzini. At the time of publication, APHA did not respond to a request for an answer on if Benbrook also paid any fee to have his panel appear at their meeting. 


(1) In actuality he was an adjunct whose position was entirely organic industry funded and only after years of us shaming the university for letting him use their brand to try and create legitimacy was his position removed. But we can't even brag about that, the university only terminated his fake job after Big Organic stopped writing checks to them.