Food Purveyor’s PR Dilemma
WATCH WHAT YOU DRINK. Research shows that a chemical widely used as an ingredient in a popular bottled beverage is the primary substance used to make thermonuclear bombs.
The beverage is known as water, and the offending volatile ingredient is known as hydrogen.
As you can see, any garden variety idiot can shine a spotlight on a scary sounding ingredient and spread panic.
There is nothing wrong with using azodicarbonamide to stabilize dough during baking. Valid and repeated tests have shown that it is beneficial to bread and harmless to you and me. Its only problem is that it sounds scary, as do some of its other, nonfood uses.
When paranoia monger “Food Babe” opened her viral yap about azodicarbonamide, she created for Subway a classic PR dilemma. Subway could lose in the long term by arguing, correctly but unsuccessfully, that their use of azodicarbonamide was harmless; or, recognizing that an outraged public does not easily see reason, they could lose in the short term by discontinuing its use, even though that would appear to validate Food Babe’s nonsense.
Pragmatism triumphed over idealism. Subway quit using azodicarbonamide.
Think what Food Babe could accomplish if she went after real instead of imagined abuses. It’s not like there aren’t plenty out there just waiting for someone to take them on.