By Dr. Royal Lee
Summary: In this 1957 article, Dr. Royal Lee reflects on the fiftieth anniversary of the founding of the Food and Drug Administration—originally called the U.S. Bureau of Chemistry—by detailing the corruption that transformed the agency from watchdog of America’s food supply to lapdog of the country’s food manufacturing, medical, and pharmaceutical industries. Dr. Lee recalls the noble vision of the FDA’s founder, Dr. Harvey Wiley, who fought for years to establish federal oversight of food safety and purity in America, only to see the agency he helped create become corrupted, quickly and secretly, by a confluence of commercial and political interests. Dr. Lee writes: “In the midst of public praise for Wiley’s pioneering and public thanksgiving over the (supposed) fact that foods, drugs, and cosmetics are pure and truly labeled, we are likely to overlook the way in which Wiley’s work has been perverted. We may remain ignorant of the way in which the FDA protects the food, drug, and cosmetic industries and the medical monopoly at the expense of the public it is supposed to serve. We may forget that Wiley himself was ousted for trying to stand up against these powerful interests.” This is a rich historical document alerting the American people to a matter on which they had been—and continue to be—intentionally and systematically deceived. From Liberation magazine, 1957. Lee Foundation for Nutritional Research reprint 94.