Circulating message purporting to be from the Delhi Police warns people not to drink any product from Frooti because a worker has added HIV contaminated blood to the drinks.
The claims in the message are untrue and it does not originate from Delhi Police. It is just another version of a series of bogus ‘HIV contamination’ rumours that have circulated online for several years. Sharing this warning will help nobody.
NOTE: Important msg from Delhi police to all over India:
For the next few weeks do not drink any product of Frooti, as a worker from the company has added his blood contaminated with HIV (AIDS). It ws shown yesterday on NDTV… Pls forward this msg urgently to people you care… Take Care!!
Share it as Much as U Can.
According to a warning that is currently circulating via social media, people should avoid any Frooti drinks products because a worker has deliberately contaminated the drinks with HIV infected blood. Frooti is a fruit juice drink popular in India and is made and distributed by Parle Agro. The message supposedly comes from Delhi Police.
However, the claims in the message are utter nonsense.
The message is not from Delhi Police as claimed. In fact, it is just another version of a long running hoax that has targeted other drinks companies. As the following example reveals, the message is cut from the same cloth as an earlier hoax that spread false warnings about Pepsi and Coke:
MPORTANT MESSAGE FROM DELHI POLICE…. 4 next NEXT FEW DAY DNT DRINK ANY PRODUCT FROM PEPSI, TROPICANA JUICE SLICE, 7UP, COCA COLA, ETC , AS A WORKER FROM D COMPANY HAS ADDED HIS BLOOD CONTAMINATED WIT AIDS. Watch ND TV. Plez Forward dis mesge to every 1 u care 4 plz
Another version falsely claimed that workers had deliberately contaminated canned fruit in a factory by dripping their blood into the food. Other variants have falsely claimed that HIV infected blood was added to ketchup dispenses in fast food outlets. Alternative versions of the hoax have warned that people have been diagnosed with AIDS after eating contaminated takeaway food prepared by a HIV positive cook. None of the would-be warnings have any validity whatsoever.
Parle Agro has published a statement debunking the warning and assuring consumers that Frooti products are safe. The statement notes in part:
Drawing your attention to the baseless rumour floating around that Frooti contains HIV blood, we assure you that this is a rumour and holds no credibility. Sadly, a lot of renowned beverage brands have been faced with the same unjustified rumour.
The Delhi Police and news channel NDTV have confirmed to Parle Agro that this is not something they have circulated…
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in the US notes that it has never received any reports of HIV infections caused by contaminated food. The CDC also points out that a person would not become infected even if they did consume food that contained HIV infected blood. In its section on HIV transmission, the CDC notes:
Except for rare cases in which children consumed food that was pre-chewed by an HIV-infected caregiver, HIV has not been spread through food. The virus does not live long outside the body. You cannot get it from consuming food handled by an HIV-infected person; even if the food contained small amounts of HIV-infected blood or semen, exposure to the air, heat from cooking, and stomach acid would destroy the virus.
These bogus warnings achieve nothing other than to spread unnecessary alarm in communities. They add to the fear and misinformation surrounding HIV/Aids and sharing them is counterproductive. If you receive one of these bogus HIV contamination warnings, please let the sender know that the information is incorrect and should not be shared.