PETA Takes Issue With 'Sesame Street' Sponsor

Group says children's show promoting "Good Egg" project in exchange for sponsorship from the Egg Board

People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals has taken aim at Big Bird and company over Sesame Street producer Sesame Workshop's acceptance of the Egg Board as a corporate sponsor, saying the iconic kids show is "promoting the Good Egg Project in exchange for the egg industry's financial sponsorship." Sesame Workshop counters that accepting the sponsorship is not the same as endorsing the board.

In an action alert posted on its Web site, PETA Monday asked members to write the Workshop to express their displeasure. By "promoting the egg industry's deceptive 'Good Egg Project,' Sesame Street is misleading children and parents into believing that eggs are a wholesome food, when the truth is that eggs are linked to multiple serious health problems and that the egg industry horribly abuses animals," says the form letter on PETA's site. The board was preparing a comment at press time, but it argues that high-protein foods like eggs are a good source of energy and nutrition, and points to the benefits of breakfast for memory, improved grades and test scores.

PETA said it had sent Sesame Street producers "extensive evidence" documenting cruelty to the birds and health risks to kids from eggs, but launched the online campaign after they "refused to end their partnership with the egg industry."

Sesame Workshop says its goal of helping kids remains unchanged by its association with eggs.

“Sesame Workshop’s programming, including Sesame Street, are made available in part due to corporate sponsors, like the American Egg Board," said Ellen Lewis, VP of corporate communications for Sesame Workshop. "As with all sponsors, Sesame Workshop maintains complete editorial independence and control of our messaging and content, free of all corporate endorsement or bias, so we can focus fully on Sesame Street’s underlying mission to provide children with the very best start in life."

“For over 40 years, Sesame Workshop has always put the health and educational needs of children and their families first."