ABC News Senior Vice President Jeffrey Schneider says BPI's lawsuit is, quote "without merit."
Schneider told KTIV that the network will "contest it vigorously." ABC also claims it wasn't the first to use the term "pink slime". He's right. It was a former USDA scientist in an e-mail a decade ago.
Schneider also says ABC wasn't the first to report on LFTB using that two-word, derogatory term. In fact, before ABC's first report, on March 7th, www.msnbc.com, the Washington Post, and USA Today all reported on LFTB.
Lawyers for BPI admit ABC may not have been first to report, but the network has been the loudest. Dan Webb, BPI Attorney, says, "We're not gonna go out and sue everybody under the sun that says something about our product that we don't like. The only reason we we've sued ABC is they made a choice to turn this into this systemic, sustained, long-running, repetitive conduct that decimated the product on the marketplace."
Many of those reports on BPI, and LFTB, were penned by ABC correspondent Jim Avila, who's named in BPI's lawsuit. An ABC spokesperson says Avila won't have any comment.