January 7, 2004

C. Manly Molpus
President and Chief Executive Officer
Grocery Manufacturers of America (GMA)
2401 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW Second Floor
Washington, DC 20037

James M. Kilts
Chair of the GMA Board of Directors
Chairman and CEO The Gillette Company
Prudential Tower Building
Boston, MA 02199

Subject: Open Letter Regarding GMA's Recent Request for my Biographical Information

Dear Gentlemen:

On December 15, I received an email from a Grocery Manufacturers of America (GMA) employee requesting a copy of my biography for our sources.  I found the request unusual, and replied asking for further details. To my great surprise, the following day I received a message from her that was clearly intended for someone else. It contained our brief email exchange, but at the top the employee had written the

I don't know what to tell this woman! "Well, actually we're trying to see if you have a juicy past that we could use
against you."

The implications of this message are obviously unsettling. While I am open to a dialog with GMA and its member companies about the many consumer privacy issues CASPIAN has raised in recent years (including RFID technology, customer loyalty  cards, and grocery industry CRM practices), I find it disturbing that your organization, its employees, and/or its member organizations would resort to attacking me personally rather than addressing the issues.

I hope this incident simply reflects poor judgment on the part of a few individuals within GMA and does not represent a standard practice of your organization. I would like assurance that character assassination does not receive the support of GMA or its member and associate member companies, which include such known RFID supporters as Gillette, Procter and Gamble, Unilever, Accenture, Checkpoint Systems, and SAP, along with some surprising members like media giant Time Warner.

To aid in your investigation of this incident, I have attached a copy of both email messages, including header information. A follow-up phone call to the employee confirmed that she works in your communications department, overseen by Richard Martin, Vice President of Communications.

I look forward to receiving your reply via email at kma@nocards.org.


Katherine Albrecht, Founder and Director
CASPIAN - Consumers Against Supermarket Privacy Invasion and Numbering

cc: Richard Martin, GMA Vice President of Communications,
      Beverly Rheinhardt, Executive Assistant to Mr. Molpus
      web sites: http://www.spychips.com and http://www.nocards.org

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