Keeping our eyes and ears open…..

The dark side of pink; Buying a sponsoring product doesn’t mean a bonanza for breast cancer research (Abstract Only)


Title: The dark side of pink; Buying a sponsoring product doesn’t mean a bonanza for breast cancer research

Author/Byline: Unknown

Publication: Philadelphia Daily News

Publication Date: October 18, 2006

AREN’T YOU about sick of pink right now?

I love the color. But it’s everywhere. Stores are selling pink vacuum cleaners, pink Peppermint Patties, pink Serta mattresses, pink hammers and evenpink cans of Campbell Soup – all to benefit various breast-cancer-related charities.

There’s even a Pink Ribbon Barbie.

Many products that aren’t completely pink have the pink breast cancer logo or some other designation announcing that a portion of the proceeds from sales will go to benefit breast cancer efforts. Panera Bread, for instance, is selling ribbon-shaped bagels to benefit the Ellie Fund.)

Although I applaud the altruism of corporate America, I can’t help but be a little suspicious. It’s easy to put a pink ribbon on something and claim a product is being sold to benefit a breast-cancer charity.

Often, the companies’ efforts are commendable. The Susan G. Komen Foundation, for instance, lists on its Web site 22 $1 million corporate sponsors.

But activists warn there are some companies whose pink products benefit charities only loosely related to the cause. Some companies promise a lump sum, regardless of how much product they sell.

And then there are all those companies that contribute only a small percentage of the proceeds from the sale of their pink products. In other words, things aren’t always as rosy as they seem in pink land.

“If [consumers] read the small print on these products, for the most part, their individual purchases will raise very little money,” pointed out Samantha King, author of the new book “Pink Ribbons, Inc.: Breast Cancer and the Politics of Philanthropy.”

And as Barbara Brenner of Breast Cancer Action pointed out during a recent conversation, “Somebody has to ask, ‘Where is all this money going?’ ”




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