The controversy about “Lays” turned into a new shape after the recent launch of Junaid Jamshed (JJ)’s new TVC where he is endorsing Lays brand as free from any suspicious ingredients in Islamic Perspective. In TVC he is talking about “vegetable oil” where as issue is entirely different. Pls see that TVC
Before his impressive conversion towards Islamic perspective & lifestyle, JJ was supposed to be a brand ambassador for Pepsi. He has a strong relationship with Tahir Khan who is owner of Interflow, the advertisement agency of Pepsi Pakistan. According to my sources JJ was contacted by Tahir Khan & he pushed him to come up in the TVC. Considering his long relationship with Tahir sb & proofs presented by Pepsi, JJ was convinced that Lays are Halal. Basically he was the person who advised Tahir sb to take the advise from South African National Halaal Authority (SANHA).
But when the TVC went on air someone informed him about daily Ummat researches. So he personally contacted to Ummat office & Saeed Ahmed Abassi (who had done the research),they clarified him about the whole scenario. He was worried & said that he will see what he can do now, but he left for Morocco with tableeghi Jamaat. I don’t know when he will come back & what he will do. But before appearing in any ad he should have consulted with some reputable scholars regarding the issue.
It looks that now it’s the direct unmatched competition between a multinational company (which has huge promotional budgets with a very active advertising agency(Interflow) that has its own radio station & two TV channels , PR agency & many more ) & Daily Ummat (who has the second largest reader base of Karachites only ) who is leading the story against Lays.
In search of reality I came across many websites & blogs. Interestingly most of the websites & specially blogs have the same information which is provided by Pepsi company itself. E.g. http://www.pakfactor.com/lays-halal-certificates.html http://mukalma.blogspot.com/2009/05/no-pig-fat-in-e631.html, http://pakmediablog.net/brands/follow-up-lays-100-halal/ http://www.zaheerspeaks.com/2009/05/19/lays-chips-haraam-propaganda-or-truth/
Here, at one blog I also see the image of Amir Liaquat Hussain in which he is eating Lays in IDP camps
But what is the reality? Is it still controversial? see the following
1) The controversy starts from the code “E631”. Pepsi claims that (Source : http://i41.tinypic.com/20shs5.gif )
“In fact the E-631 used by LAYS Pakistan is derived from TAPIOCA STARCH, a plant based raw material which has been certified Halaal.”
2) But research shows us that,
- Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tapioca “Tapioca is a flavorless, colorless, odorless starch extracted from the root of the plant species Manihot esculenta.” I think we are talking about a flavor enhancer, how come flavor enhancer can be flavorless?
- Source : http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/E631
Disodium Inosinate (E631), chemical formula C10H11N2Na2O8P, is the disodium salt of inosinic acid. It is a food additive often found in instant noodles, potato chips, and a variety of other snacks. It is used as a flavor enhancer, in synergy with monosodium glutamate (also known as MSG; the sodium salt of glutamic acid) to provide the umami taste. It is mainly found in animals like pigs and fish.
C. Please also visit http://www.exploreenumbers.co.uk/E-Numbers-with-Animal-Origins.html
where its clearly mentioned that E631 is extracted from meat , read the following
“E Numbers Purely Derived from Animal Origins
- I. These are the numbers that are derived purely from animal origins:
- E120 Cochineal – This crimson red colour comes from the crushed shell of the cactus insect, Dactylopious coccus.
- E542 Edible bone phosphate – This originates from animal bones.
- E631 Sodium 5’-inosinate – This comes from meat extracts and sardines.
- E901 Beeswax – This comes from the honeycomb produced by bees. Many people may think of it as being naturally produced, but people who are strictly avoiding all animal-derived E numbers may prefer to avoid it completely.”
The problem is clear
- Pepsi (Miss Saima Arshad- R&D Manager) is claiming that E631 (which produces flavors in Lays Chips) is extracted from TAPIOCA STARCH plant.
- Wikipedia is saying that this is a flavorless plant, so how a flavorless product can produce flavor in chips.
- Wikipedia also confirmed that E631 is extracted from bovine sources specially from pigs & fishes.
- So the situation is clear Pepsi management is misguiding the people
3) Pepsi also claims that they get the ingredient from “International flavor & fragrance Inc.” .
I visited their website & failed to find any info about E631 there, You can also visit http://www.iff.com/Internet.nsf/HomePage!OpenForm
I read the word “Kosher” there but not halal. Kosher means
Kosher foods are those that conform to the rules of Jewish religion.
4) According to daily Ummat IFF, Pakistan chapter office which is located in Kashif center – Karachi (near Hockey club of Pakistan) denied any supply of any thing by the name of E631 to Pepsi.
“Central Islamic committee of Thailand” works under the ministry of culture in Thailand. There are three states where Muslims are in majority i.e. Yala, Pattani and Narathiwat. In 2005, muslims in Southern Thailand made up 30.4% of population above the age 15, while less than 3% in other parts of the country.
Muslims in Thailand used the products of Indonesia & Malaysia as the Thailand administration encouraged pig farming. Muslims of Thailand have doubts on the products, so to tackle this issue Thai govt. developed that institute but most of the Muslims don’t trust on that body.
5) Jamia Ashrafia is also refuting from issuing the certificate of Halal products to Lay’s. According to them “A Conditional Certificate had been issued that “If there is no Pig Particle added in the products, then it is Halal otherwise it is Haram and according to Jamia Ashrafia, “Lay’s Company is misusing that conditional certificate. You can see the written clarification issued by their Publication Secretary
6) Company is also giving the reference of “The South African National Halaal Authority (SANHA)”. I am really surprised why Pepsi is not giving any reference of local authority.
So the conclusion is that every thing is not “clear” from LAYS & we have a few ”doubts”. They need to clear their position. As far as I am concerned, PBUH advised us that “leave those things which have doubts” & doubts are clearly open & obvious for LAYS chips.