On November 23, five days ago, I was scrolling on Facebook when a post from a popular Vegan Facebook page called Bad Vegans
showed up that immediately piqued my interest. Someone had posted an ad, which, at first glace, looks like genuine ad for a new flavor, Tofurkey of Ruffles Potato Chips.
It seemed to me, that right before the American Thanksgiving, that Ruffles had jumped on the bandwagon of this growing movement towards veganism.
Unfortunately, the whole thing is a joke, poking fun at Vegans and Vegetarians, and at Tofurkey. Upon closer examination of the ad, it says “Limited Time Never”.
Still unconvinced that this could possibly be a real joke by a large, legitimate food brand, I choose to give the company the benefit of the doubt, with the certainty that this whole thing had been an unfortunate joke, that apologies would happen soon and that the joker who had thought this a good idea, would be fired.
It’s now five days later, yet none of that has happened, while the FB page seems silent on the whole matter.
How Facebook Users Reacted
It looks like 15,000 Facebook users have shared the ad, but it’s hard to tell if they shared it because they liked it or because they hated it. However, it’s apparent that this ad is getting far more attention than ads posted since. The two posts that have been added since have resulted in one measly hit of the share button. Comparatively, obviously the joke towards vegan and vegetarian food is getting a huge reaction.
Positive or Negative Reaction?
More than 3200 hit angry face emoticons, while over 880 gave seemingly positive reactions, with a laugh or thumbs up.
Who stuck around to comment on the post? It looks like the amount of posts are in the hundreds and definitely, overwhelmingly, they are negative.
Some Facebook User Quotes
“Today should really be a lesson for your PR team. Your most interacted-with post in a long while was only because you angered and lost thousands of your customers. Your other posts can barely get a few likes most times. This should speak volumes to your company. Veganism is the future.”
“You’re going to have to do some serious groveling to ever get my business back. Mocking me and my dietary choices through your ad campaigns is just inexcusable.”
“Are you getting paid a pile of cash from the dairy or meat industry? That’s the only way this makes any sense.”
The move, in fact, does not make a lot of sense, considering potato chips are certainly fall within the vegan’s diet. While it may not be a healthy choice, the Ruffles brand of chips actually shows up on the Peta website on their list of Top 20 Accidental Vegan Foods. The irony can’t be missed. I have to wonder how long that item shall remain on the list.
In a world where veganism is a growing trend, it’s rather puzzling that a company that vegans spend money on would insult the food choices of vegans.
Many are calling for a boycott of Ruffles.
Whether you are a Vegan, Vegetarian or Omnivore, what is your reaction? Will a boycott ensue?