USDA Gave Domino’s $12 Million Dollars for Cheesier Pizza

A slice of Dominos pepperoni pizza.

Ed. Note: Looks like Consumerist partially debunked the New York Times story that was one of the sources for this one. Thanks to Cody, one of our readers, for the tip! – Becky

You guys have seen the commercials, right? Domino’s Pizza reformulated their recipe to make their pizzas taste better. What those ads don’t tell you is how they improved the flavor and where they got the money to do it.

Domino’s had a reputation for bad pizza, and last year they launched an (expensive) advertising campaign about their new recipe. Here’s a :15 spot for the “Domino’s Turnaround:”

It turns out the USDA Dairy Management organization helped fund the Domino’s turnaround to the tune of $12 million, and for what? The “improved” pizza features 40% more cheese. Planet Green’s Sara Novak reports that, “One slice of the new pie contains as much as two-thirds of a dayโ€™s maximum recommended amount of saturated fat.

We’ve asked before if you thought that special interests have too much influence within the USDA. What are your thoughts on the USDA’s role in Domino’s new pizza?

Looking for a healthier pizza option? You might try your hand at making your own home made pizza!

Image Credit: Creative Commons photo by VirtualEm

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2 thoughts on “USDA Gave Domino’s $12 Million Dollars for Cheesier Pizza”

  1. I think… no, I KNOW you got your facts mixed up.

    When Domino’s did the new recipe, the amount of cheese on a standard Domino’s pizza did not change.

    The marketing money provided by the DMI was for a special line of pizzas called the “American Legends”. That line is comprised of 8 very specific pizzas.

    The DMI exists to market dairy products. It is NOT taxpayer funded, as it states clearly on it’s homepage:
    “The dairy checkoff program was created by farmers, for farmers, and is funded by Americaโ€™s dairy farm families โ€“ and only by dairy farmers. It does not use any government or taxpayer dollars to promote dairy products in the United States.”

    They invested marketing dollars in a program to sell more CHEESE, the very product they produce.

    So, we have farmers spending their own money, marketing their product in order to keep production up and make a living as opposed to having volumes drop and government price supports kick in… in which case tax dollars would be spent.

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