- Associated Press - Wednesday, June 28, 2017

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (AP) - The Latest on the settlement between Beef Products Inc. and ABC over the meat producer’s “pink slime” defamation lawsuit (all times local):

9:45 a.m.

Beef Products Inc. says the settlement reached with ABC News in a $1.9 billion defamation lawsuit over the network’s reports on its lean, finely textured beef product provides a strong foundation on which to grow the business.

The terms of the settlement announced Wednesday are confidential. BPI and its family owners say that the lawsuit was difficult, but necessary to start rectifying the harm suffered as a result of ABC’s reports on their product, which critics dubbed “pink slime.”

Dakota Dunes-based Beef Products Inc. sued the television network in 2012, saying ABC’s coverage misled consumers into believing the product is unsafe and led to the closure of three plants and layoffs of roughly 700 workers.

ABC spokeswoman Julie Townsend says the network throughout the case has maintained its reports accurately presented the facts and views of knowledgeable people about the product.

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9:05 a.m.

ABC says it has reached a settlement with a South Dakota meat producer that filed a more than $1 billion lawsuit against the network over its reports on the company’s lean, finely textured beef product that critics dubbed “pink slime.”

ABC spokeswoman Julie Townsend says in a statement that the network has “reached an amicable resolution of its dispute with the makers” of the product. Dakota Dunes-based Beef Products Inc. sued the television network in 2012, saying ABC’s coverage was a “disinformation campaign” that misled consumers into believing the product is unsafe, is not beef and isn’t nutritious.

The defamation trial against ABC and correspondent Jim Avila started in June. Neither Townsend nor BPI immediately responded to telephone messages requesting comment.

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This item has been corrected to show that Jim Avila is a correspondent for ABC, not a producer.

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