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Agribusiness’s beef with Michael Pollan, plus a side of academic freedom?

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Harris Ranch Beef Co. chairman David E. Wood pledged $150,000 for a new meat processing plant on Cal Poly San Luis Obispo’s campus, but threatened to “rethink” his “continued financial support” after the university booked a lecture by sustainable food guru Michael Pollan, which took place today. Wood’s also unhappy about an animal science professor who called conventional feedlots (like Harris Ranch) unsustainable. Pollan still spoke—albeit as part of a panel—and the money remains pledged, but how do universities navigate academic freedom in tight financial times?


David Wehner, dean at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo

Robert C. Post, dean and Sol & Lilliam Goldman professor of law, Yale Law School; he was instrumental in crafting the UC system’s academic freedom policy while at UC Berkeley’s Bolt Hall