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in memoriam
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We recently received the following e-mail from ASEMBA member calling attention to a Proctor & Gamble product.

I know SEMBA beekeepers, as well as MBA and other beekeeper groups and organizations) are interested in protecting honey’s highly respected name and visual image as well as consumers. To that end, I would ask that you consider letting others know of the following information and perhaps they will also call the Michigan Consumer Protection Division at 877-765-8388 (toll free in MI, and opened M-F 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.) to request a complaint/inquiry.

In response to the below article, I contacted Proctor & Gamble (“P&G”) by calling 1-800-568-4035. I was told that although P&G does not include honey in it’s HONEY BUTTER PRINGLES STIX, it uses natural and artificial flavors to give it a honey like taste. Since this also seems like a consumer fraud to me, I called the Michigan Consumer Protection Division at 877-765-8388 and requested a complaint/inquiry. I was told that if more people call the Michigan Consumer Protection Division at 877-765-8388, then it is more likely that the State will act. I pray others will as well. Please consider making the calls and sending along this info.

The following article entitled “Shame on P&G” was published in the Sept/Oct 2008 Newsletter from the University of California, Davis' Department of Entomology, by Eric Mussen, Entomology Extension.

Shame on P&G

The product wrapper is golden with that well-recognized Face (Mr. Pringles) and printed “Pringles,” as well as a honey dipper, dripping some honey near the words “HONEY BUTTER.” The product is Baked Wheat Stix: Crispy Cracker Sticks (Artificially Flavored).

So, where is honey positioned on the detailed ingredients list? Let’s see. “Wheat flour, palm oil, sugar, butter (cream, salt, lethicin), margarine (palm oil, soybean oil, canola oil, corn oil, glyceryl monostearate, carotene, natural flavors, mono- and diglycerides) and salt. Contains 2% or less of: isomeric sugar, yeast, rice starch, natural and artificial flavors, trisodium phosphate, monosodium glutamate, disodium inosinate, egg, disodium guanylate and Sucralose. Contains wheat, milk, soybean and egg ingredients. Distributed by Proctor & Gamble, Cincinnati, Ohio 45202, U.S.A. Product of Thailand. Questions? Comments? 1-800-568-4035.”

Honey is not on the list!

On the “10 Pak” box we learn that each packet of sticks has less than 100 calories [90, actually]. We also see the honey dipper, again, quite large with the words “HONEY BUTTER” next to it. On the back of the box we find the dripping dipper, again, AND a frame of uncapped honey comb. On the comb is written: “Honey. Butter. Sound like a mouth-watering combination? Try the rich and scrumptious, honey butter-flavored PRINGLE STIX and ask yourself: How do they pack so much taste into such skinny Stix? HONEY BUTTER PRINGLES STIX – just one of the deliciously fantastic flavors ready to burst from the box in these all-crunchy, all-crispy, cracker STIX!”

So, does Proctor & Gamble expect sugar, isomeric sugar and Sucralose® to combine to make honey? This is a blatant “rip off” of the consumer, by using honey’s highly respected name and visual image to sell a product, even though honey isn’t even listed as an ingredient. To me, this is consumer fraud. If you agree, they gave us their toll free number to discuss the issue. It might be worth a few minutes to see what they have to say. Once, again, 1-800-568-4035.
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