Michael F. Jacobson is co-founder and executive director of the Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI), a nonprofit health advocacy organization with more than 900,000 members. CSPI focuses on nutrition, food safety, scientific integrity and alcohol policy. CSPI is a key player in the ongoing battle against obesity in America, advocating nutritious and safe diets and pushing legislators and corporations to take steps to protect the public's health.
Since 1971, Jacobson and CSPI have led efforts to win passage of the Nutrition Labeling and Education Act, which requires nutrition information on most food labels, as well as a law requiring warning notices on alcohol-beverage labels, and an FDA regulation requiring that trans fat be listed on packaged foods labels. CSPI gained worldwide publicity with its studies of the nutritional quality of restaurant meals and caused major chains to add more healthful items to their menus. CSPI also has halted numerous deceptive food labels and ads, through pressure in the media and a new litigation initiative. Jacobson has been especially concerned about junk-food marketing aimed at kids, the nutritional quality of school meals, and the safety of food additives.