Bengaluru-based foodtech company iD Fresh Foods, which supplies idli-dosa batter across the country, has refuted a viral WhatsApp message that alleged that the company uses cow bones and calf rennet to increase the volume of its batter.
In a statement, iD Fresh Foods, said: “Some consumers have received a WhatsApp forward message carrying misleading, false and baseless information about iD using animal extracts in its products. Since the intensity of misinformation being spread is high this time around, we thought we should issue an official statement.”
Calling the claim baseless and fake propaganda, the company added: “We would like to clearly specify that iD uses only vegetarian ingredients to make its products, iD Idly Dosa Batter is made from rice, urad dal, fenugreek and RO water only, which are 100% natural and vegetarian agri-commodities. There are no animal extracts used in any of our products.”
— iD Fresh Food (@IDFreshFood) September 6, 2021
The issue also took a communal angle when a Twitter user claimed that the company “only hires Muslims” and is “halal-certified”. The company, however, did not comment on the allegation.
Accompanied by its fundraising news from 2014, the Twitter user [in a now-deleted thread] added that the company claimed to be “the only company adhering to strict Sharia Islamic Law”.
Founded by PC Musthafa (a story of “from rags to riches), Abdul Nazer, Shamsudeen TK, Jafar TK and Noushad TA in 2005, the company is present across over 45 markets including Mumbai, Pune, Hyderabad, Vijayawada and even Dubai and Abu Dhabi, among others.
It has two production plants in Bengaluru and one each in Chennai, Mumbai, Hyderabad, Mangalore and Dubai (Middle East). iD products are also supplied to distribution centres in Mysore and Pune, and the brand is also available with online grocers like BigBasket.
The company is backed by Sequoia Capital India, The Times of India’s parent company Bennett, Coleman and Co Ltd, Helion Venture Partners and Premji Invest.
Other companies that became social media controversies recently due to ads or other content include Zomato’s Ads featuring Hrithik Roshan and Katrina Kaif, WhiteHat Jr for featuring Barack Obama, Bill Gates, Sundar Pichai, Tanishq’s Ekatvam ad, Myntra’s logo, Amazon Prime and its originals, Pepsi’s Kendall Jenner’s ad amid Black Lives Matter movement, Nivea and Fair & Lovely (now changed to Glow & Lovely) over white supremacy, Gillette’s ad generalizing toxic men, Burger King’s Women belong in kitchen tweet, Amul’s Exit the Dragon image, and Mobikwik calling Paytm Chinese app amid Chinese app ban.