MACON, Ga. (AP) - A doctors' group that promotes plant-based eating and animal rights is makin' a fuss over the Macon Bacon baseball team.
The Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine has sent a letter urging the Georgia summer collegiate team to change its name, WMAZ-TV reported. The group has also sponsored a billboard imploring Macon fans to "keep bacon off your plate."
"Macon Bacon’s glorification of bacon, a processed meat that raises the risk of colorectal cancer and other diseases, sends the wrong message to fans," Anna Herby, the group's nutrition education program manager, wrote to the team's president.
The Macon Bacon had its first season with the Coastal Plains League in 2018 after the name was chosen in a vote by fans. The team's mascot, Kevin, won over "Footloose" actor Kevin Bacon, who once wore a Macon Bacon hat in an Instagram post.
And it's not just a name. The ballpark concession menu includes bacon-wrapped bacon, steak-cut bacon, bacon-loaded cheese fries and bacon chips.
The Washington-based Physicians Committee advocates for plant-based diets and scientific research without animal testing. Herby's letter dated June 1 suggests the team change its name to "Macon Facon Bacon," referring to a plant-based bacon.
Team President Brandon Raphael said the Macon Bacon name and brand have been embraced by fans for their "lighthearted and playful nature." He also noted ballpark concessions include "a plant-based option."
"The Macon Bacon do not view ourselves as a glorification of an unhealthy lifestyle," Raphael's statement said. "Rather, we pride ourselves on being a fun-natured organization focused on bringing families and communities together of Middle Georgia and beyond."