click image to zoom In a new marketing tagline that almost screams irony, Chobani, the New York-based yogurt company, managed to anger many of the people that are responsible for the company’s existence: scientists.
Chobani paired their new “Simply 100” (to promote 100-calorie yogurt cups) slogan with wording under their foil lids (note: foil is not found in nature) with the saying “Nature got us to 100 calories, not scientists.”
It should not be a surprise that a yogurt (note: the bacteria Chobani uses in its yogurt was most likely isolated by scientists) company is touting its nutritional values. After all, dairy products provide 9 essential nutrients and minerals per serving. However, its “not scientists” marketing approach is much different than the approach taken by Chipotle and Panera that angered agriculturalists.
Instead of infuriating just the 50,000 or so U.S. dairy farmers and their families (many of whom hold 2- and 4-year science degrees and use science to grow and produce our food every day) , Chobani decided to take on the 6.2 million scientists and engineers in the U.S., world leaders in technology and advancement.
Like a page from the Revenge of the Nerds script, the evil and mad scientists of the world fought back. Popular Science, the magazine for those wicked beings, profiled the hypocrisy in Chobani’s approach and noted that the yogurt cup’s ingredients for the black cherry version are:
Nonfat Yogurt (Cultured Pasteurized Nonfat Milk), Live and Active Cultures: S. Thermophilus, L. Bulgaricus, L. Acidophilus, Bifidus and L. Casei, Chicory Root Fiber, Black Cherries, Water, Cherry Juice Concentrate, Evaporated Cane Juice, Pectin, Natural Flavors, Locust Bean Gum, Monkfruit Extract, Stevia Leaf Extract.
By our standards, it would appear that every ingredient on the list has been improved or created with the help of science.
Using Chobani’s own Twitter hashtag #howmatters, (note: hashtags were invented by Twitter, which is on the internet, a platform invented by scientists) scientists said, in creative ways, that “how” does matter, and that “how” is science.
#howmatters Calories exist in nature and are natural except for the fact that they are units invented by scientists to measure energy— Sith Lotus (@upulie) June 4, 2014
Granted, on its website, Chobani shows that their real point is that the sweeteners used in its yogurt aren’t artificial, unlike their competitors. That’s similar, but less direct, to the approach the dairy industry makes with our product being all-natural.