For Immediate Release:
December 12, 2023
Tasgola Bruner 202-483-7382
Washington – PETA’s first-ever JunkSci Award is on its way to Clóvis Milton Duval Wannmacher, a lead experimenter at the Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul in Porto Alegre, Brazil, for his institution’s deadly junk science bankrolled by Japanese food conglomerate Ajinomoto Co. Inc.
The award—which depicts a gleaming golden garbage can with a dangling, bloody rat’s tail and paw—encapsulates the school’s vicious test, in which experimenters immobilized rats to induce muscle loss by crudely taping them to splints stretching their back legs wide apart for weeks, repeatedly force-fed them Ajinomoto’s glutamine and other amino acids, then decapitated them in a “guillotine” and dissected them.
Rats were crudely duct-taped to splints for two weeks to induce muscle loss in a study conducted by the Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul. Credit: Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul
“The Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul only succeeded in tarnishing its reputation by conducting medieval and irrelevant experiments on animals, and Ajinomoto should be ashamed that it funds such barbaric testing,” says PETA Vice President Shalin Gala. “PETA asks supporters to join us in calling on Ajinomoto stop funding gruesome experiments and junk science.”
Ajinomoto—the world’s largest manufacturer of monosodium glutamate (MSG) and the owner of popular packaged frozen-food brands Tai Pei, Ling Ling, and José Olé—has tormented animals for over 70 years. The experiments, which aren’t required by law, are used to make dubious marketing claims about the human health benefits of its products despite the fact that these tests fail to reliably translate to humans.
To date, more than 336,000 PETA supporters have urged Ajinomoto to stop conducting and funding these tests. Some of the largest food and drink manufacturing companies in the world, including Barilla, Heineken, and Monde Nissin, have already banned animal experiments following discussions with PETA.
PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to experiment on”—opposes speciesism, a human-supremacist worldview. For more information on PETA’s investigative newsgathering and reporting, please visit PETA.org, listen to The PETA Podcast, or follow the group on X (formerly Twitter), Facebook, or Instagram.