Grim reaper brings anti-cheese message to Wisconsin
A billboard warning of the dangers of cheese consumption went up in Wisconsin on Tuesday, funded by a nonprofit.
September 27th, 2011
11:01 PM ET

Grim reaper brings anti-cheese message to Wisconsin

Cheese lovers, brace yourselves: “Cheese can sack your health.”

That’s the message on a billboard near Wisconsin’s Lambeau Field, home of the NFL’s Green Bay Packers. And yes, that is the same state that leads the United States in cheese production.

A nonprofit based in Washington, Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine, posted the anti-cheese billboard on Tuesday after conquering some legal issues.

The poster was initially going to depict the grim reaper wearing a cheesehead hat, with the words “Warning: Cheese can sack your health,” to alert passersby who saw the billboard – who would ideally be football fans, according to PCRM.org. However, Foamation Inc., the company that manufactures cheesehead hats, threatened a copyright lawsuit, forcing the organization to remove the cheesehead from its poster, according to the nonprofit’s website.

The PCRM billboard had the grim reaper wearing a cheesehead hat before manufacturers insisted it be removed from the poster.

“We’re happy,” Foamation’s office manager Denise Kaminski told “The Chippewa Herald,” a newspaper based in Wisconsin. “The cheesehead is a fun thing, so we’re glad that has happened.”

Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine said the focus is on health issues.

“The key message is that cheese can hurt your health,” Neal Barnard, the organization's president, said in a press release. “Cheese is the No. 1 source of saturated fat in the American diet. Parents often have no idea that this high-fat product could be causing their children’s weight problems.”

“It ought to come with a warning label so consumers understand the health risk,”
Susan Levin, nutrition education director for the physicians committee, said in the release.

But registered dietitian Roxanne Denneau told affiliate WLUK-TV, "Cheese is not going to sack your health alone. No food by itself is potentially going to sack your health.” The key, she said, is moderation.

"I think most consumers understand this for what it is,” said Wisconsin Milk Marketing Board member Patrick Geoghegan, according to affiliate WBAY. “It's misinformation - it’s typical of what PCRM does."

Green Bay Mayor Jim Schmitt doesn’t seem impressed with the tactic either.

“I think this is kind of silly,” the mayor said, according to WBAY. “I think it’s attacking something - more for PR. There are so many other things that they could be working on.”

But the nonprofit wants the billboard to be visible to fans driving via Route 41 to Sunday’s football game at Lambeau Field, as the Packers face the Denver Broncos, in hopes of influencing a lifestyle change.

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Filed under: Food • Health • U.S. • Wisconsin
soundoff (31 Responses)
  1. bigwilliestyles

    Is there anything left that adds to the taste of food that doesn't pose a risk to one's health? Salt, sugar, salad dressing, mayo, and now my beloved cheese. Why don't we all just eat cardboard and sawdust sandwiches?

    September 27, 2011 at 11:36 pm | Report abuse |
  2. THE ONE AND ONLY DRAKOREX1

    I'LL HAVE ONE CARDBOARD SANDWICH WITH CHEESE PLEASE!

    September 28, 2011 at 12:13 am | Report abuse |
  3. RUFFNUTT ( PEOPLE FOR FREE AIR ON MARS & MUNTANT RIGHTS ACTIVIST )

    i like macaroni and cheese , cheese whiz n cheese puffs, tacos with cheese , cheese doodles , cheese is awesome..

    September 28, 2011 at 12:43 am | Report abuse |
  4. citizen

    The packers will win anyways.

    September 28, 2011 at 2:39 am | Report abuse |
    • van who

      Darn right they will!

      September 28, 2011 at 1:54 pm | Report abuse |
  5. citizen

    This is also very typical of American business. Hire a bunch of retards and over pay them to do nothing.
    Same with our political system. Elect a bunch of retards and overpay them to take campaign contributions from wealthy multinational corporations. And make sure they have excellent health care benefits.

    September 28, 2011 at 2:54 am | Report abuse |
  6. Touchdown!

    one time at bandcamp i got stoned and had the munchies then slept.

    the end

    September 28, 2011 at 3:04 am | Report abuse |
  7. justathought

    Ever heard of the RAVE diet? 1) No R efined foods.......2) No A nimal products.........3) No V egetable (processed) oil.....4) No E xceptions ( or exersie ) This is a diet promoted and followed by Hollywood producer: Mike Anderson I'm not going to say that I follow his suggested diet 100%, but I will say it helped me lose weight and improve my blood pressure. 150lbs 122/64bp not bad for an old man who may be old enough to be your grandfather. It is a hard diet to follow, you need to be serious about your health.

    September 28, 2011 at 3:10 am | Report abuse |
  8. citizen

    You can't keep printing money and handing it to the fat cats. They just save it.
    Eventually someone, somewhere has to do some work.
    This is why we need a good immigration policy.
    You where lucky to have that band camp experience my friend. Many school districts can no longer afford music.
    I think.
    At least that's what I read in the paper, once.

    September 28, 2011 at 3:16 am | Report abuse |
  9. citizen

    But cheese is good. Right up there with duck tape for popular consumer products.

    September 28, 2011 at 3:21 am | Report abuse |
  10. Ahaaaah!

    Just one more bit of proof that our bodies were not designed by anyone or anything.

    September 28, 2011 at 5:00 am | Report abuse |
  11. Weston Phil

    Just another fear tactic by idiots who can't see any other way of controlling people.

    September 28, 2011 at 5:06 am | Report abuse |
  12. Andreas Moser

    I love cheese.

    September 28, 2011 at 5:09 am | Report abuse |
  13. citizen

    Election cycles are good for fear tactics. And nothing scarier than realizing u can no longer afford to eat at kfc or shop at wall mart every day.
    Ah well, life goes on and there is always the garden.

    September 28, 2011 at 5:53 am | Report abuse |
  14. Jazzzzzzzz

    cheese is my Achilles heel, mmmmm
    And where is JIF , Joey

    September 28, 2011 at 6:35 am | Report abuse |
  15. Jazzzzzzzz

    Opps, sorry forgot to give you all a
    HABBA NA DA!!!! lol

    September 28, 2011 at 6:36 am | Report abuse |
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